Region in Focus: The Loire Valley
When you think of the Loire Valley, it immediately conjures up images of magnificently opulent 15th century châteaux, links to historical royalty, and the multitude of immaculate gardens. It should therefore come as no surprise that the entire 280km of the Loire Valley is designated as a World Heritage site by UNESCO.
But beyond the grand architecture and stunning landscapes is the Loire Valley’s wine region, offering an extensive variety of red, white, rosé, and sparkling wines of the highest quality.
The Loire Valley is split into four sub-regions:
- The Pays Nantais occupies the westernmost of the four regions and lies close to the Atlantic Ocean and the ancient city of Nantes. This region has been producing wine for hundreds of years, earning itself an excellent reputation for its production of Muscadet, made from the Melon de Bourgogne grape. Here, the flat landscape and proximity to the ocean helps to moderate the climate, allowing for light and fresh wines; the perfect accompaniment to oysters or grilled fish. Why not try…Muscadet Sevre et Maine Sur Lie 2019, Domaine Des Cognettes
- The Anjou-Saumur region is the largest of the four sub-regions, with a reputation for producing exceptional dry white wines made from the high-acid Chenin grape variety, as well as delivering outstanding reds from the Cabernet Franc variety. A slightly warmer climate in this area (thanks to protection by the Mauges hills) encourages hot summers and small variations in temperature, leading to the production of wines that are entirely unique in their style. Why not try…Saumur Champigny Les Lizières 2018, Clotide Legrand. Perhaps the best treasure of the Saumur sub-region is the production of sparkling wine, known as Crémant de Loire. Vineyards that are planted on limestone soils give the grapes a bright acidity that is needed to produce outstanding sparkling wines made in the ‘traditional’ method.
- The Touraine region is famed for its red, white, and rosé wines. The varied soil types (from flint to clay to limestone) and increasingly continental climate allow for a diverse range of later-ripening grapes to be planted, increasing the range of styles of wine that are produced. Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for nearly 80% of the whites produced here, whilst the thin-skinned Gamay red grape accounts for over 60% of the red grape harvest, producing fruity, early-drinking wines. Why not try…Touraine Sauvignon Blanc 2018, Domainer Plouzeau.
- The Centre Loire vineyards in fact occupy the exact geographical centre of France, and this area is without doubt the heartland of Sauvignon Blanc territory. The origins of this variety can also be traced to this region of the country, and to this date continues to produce outstanding examples of crisp, aromatic wines with high acidity including Sancerre. Meanwhile, other highly revered appellations of Centre Loire vineyards include Pouilly-Fumé and Menetou-Salon which both benefit from the sub-region’s cool, continental climate. Why not try…Sancerre 2019, Gerard et Pierre Morin
Roberson Wine we are delighted to showcase the incredible wines of Gerard et Pierre Morin from their winery in the prestigious Sancerre region of the Loire Valley.