Anjou-Saumur Vineyard - Appellations - Loire
Anjou-Saumur Vineyard - 18 AOC
Anjou-Saumur Vineyard is one of the 5 wine-making areas of the Loire Valley Wine Region.
It unfolds on 20,000ha in the departments of Deux-Sèvres, Maine-et-Loire and Vienne.
It produces 31% of reds, 35% of rosés, 18% of whites, 16% of fizzy and was granted an AOC in 1936.
The vines grow on chalk (tufa-tuffeau), sand, clay and silica.
They benefit from an oceanic climate with fluctuating continental influences.
The Anjou-Saumur Vineyard is a trusted name for its superb dry, sweet and sparkling white wines and its excellent red wines.
The white wines are mainly produced from Chenin Blanc.
The Romans introduced this grape variety to the Loire Valley some 2000 years ago.
This emblematic regional grape variety is locally known as Pineau de la Loire Blanc or Pineau de Loire.
It has always been highly valued for its superb aromatic qualities.
The plots located along the rivers Layon and Aubance, west of the vineyard, benefit from a micro climate (moisture and heat).
This promotes the appearance of the Noble Rot - Botrytis cinerea.
This fungus coats and dehydrates the grapes and subsequently increases their sugar concentration.
The association Noble Rot - Pineau de la Loire performs miracles in terms of quality and aroma.
Some whites are also produced from Melon de Bourgogne and Sauvignon Blanc.
One of the other celebrity wines of the Anjou-Saumur Vineyard is the Saumur-Champigny.
This wine is obtained from the blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, two grape varieties that thrive on the chalky soil of the region.
Some reds are also produced from Gamay and Grolleau.
The Anjou-Saumur Vineyard has 18 AOC:
Anjou, Anjou Villages, Anjou Villages Brissac, Anjou Côteaux de la Loire, Bonnezeaux, Cabernet d’Anjou, Cabernet de Saumur, Côteaux de l’Aubance, Côteaux de Saumur, Côteaux du Layon, Crémant de Loire, Haut Poitou, Quarts de Chaume, Rosé d’Anjou, Rosé de Loire, Saumur, Saumur Champigny and Savennières
Anjou - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The AOC Anjou produces red, white, sparkling white and sparkling rosé wines
The 2500ha vineyard unfolds in 126 municipalities in Maine-et-Loir, 14 in Deux-Sèvres and 9 in Vienne.
1- Anjou rouge is produced mainly from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon with an addition of Pineau d'Aunis and Grolleau (30% maxi).
This wine has a glowing ruby colour; it is refreshing, delicate and well balanced with fine tannins and aromas of red fruit and floral notes.
It should be served at 14°C with charcuterie, grilled meats, poultry and white meat.
It keeps from 3 to 5 years.
2- Anjou Gamay is a red wine produced exclusively from Gamay - as its name suggests.
It's a simple, pleasant and fruity wine that should be drunk in the year of production and served at 13°C.
2- Anjou rouge mousseux (red sparkling) represents a modest part of production.
It is an aperitif wine with pleasant aromas of red fruits.
3- Anjou Blanc is produced from Pineau de la Loire with an addition of Chardonnay and Sauvignon (20% maxi).
It has a nice a pale yellow colour with green hues.
It is a refreshing, round wine with a good balance acidity-alcohol and aromatic finesse composed of white fruit and citrus.
It should be served at 8°C with seafood, river-fish and white meats.
It can keep up t0 10 years.
4- Anjou blanc mousseux (sparkling white) is obtained with the traditional Méthode Champenoise.
It is produced from Chenin, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnnay (20% max), Gamay, Grolleau Grey and Pineau d'Aunis.
It has delicious aromas of white fruit; it is an excellent aperitif wine that can easily replace an expensive champagne.
It should be served at 8°C and keeps surprisingly well!
5- Anjou rosé is a semi-dry wine produced from Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec-Côt, Gamay, Grolleau, Grolleau Gray and Pineau d'Aunis; it keeps 2 years.
6- Anjou rosé mousseux (sparkling) is produced from the same grape varieties but without Malbec-Cot.
Anjou Villages - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Anjou Villages is a dry red wine.
It was granted an AOC in 1991.
The 200ha vineyard unfolds in 43 municipalities in Maine-et-Loire and 3 in Deux Sèvres.
Anjou Villages is essentially produced from a blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
It has a deep red colour, with aromas of black fruit.
It is quite rich in tannins.
It keeps between 5 and 6 years.
It should be served at 16°C with grilled white meats.
Anjou Villages Brissac - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The 104ha vineyard Anjou Villages Brissac was granted an AOC in 1998.
It unfolds in 10 municipalities located around the Château of Brissac in Maine-et-Loire.
This dry red wine is produced from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
It is more complex than the Anjou Villages because of the characteristic of its soil, which consists of schist, sandstone and marl.
It has a deep red colour and floral aromas.
It should be served at 16°C with grilled meats and game.
The best vintages will keep 10 years.
Anjou Côteaux de la Loire - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The 120ha vineyard stretches on the sunny slopes of 10 municipalities located near Angers.
It was granted an AOC in 1946.
The Anjou Côteaux de la Loire is a sweet white wine produced from Chenin.
Its production is limited as it is subject to weather conditions responsible for the formation of the Noble Rot.
The fungus coats and dehydrates the grapes and therefore enhances the sugar level.
Anjou Côteaux de la Loire is a pale yellow wine with green and golden hues that evolve in slate and amber colours as it matures.
This aromatic wine is soft and light, yet captures the aromatic intensity of the Chenin Blanc.
It keeps from 2 to 10 years; the great vintages up to 15 years!
It should be served at 8°C with foie gras, however, it is also an excellent dessert wine.
Bonnezeaux - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Bonnezeaux is a splendid sweet white wine produced exclusively from Chenin Blanc.
This 120 hectares vineyard is located in the town of Thouarcé on the banks of the Layon in Maine-et-Loire.
Documents dated from 1055 already referred to its quality.
The presence of the river triggers the necessary moisture level that triggers the appearance of the Noble Rot.
The fungus dehydrates the grapes and promotes sugar concentration.
The grapes, selected individually, produce wines with rich aromas of fruit jellies.
The 'standard' Bonnezeaux is golden yellow with green hues when young.
It turns deep yellow with orangish hues if the grapes were affected by the Noble Rot.
It is extremely fine, delicate yet powerful and tasty with splendid aromas of dried fruits and white fruits with floral notes.
It is ideal with foie gras and dessert and should be served at 8°C; it keeps indefinitely!
Cabernet d'Anjou - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Cabernet d'Anjou Rosé is exclusively produced from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Cabernet d'Anjou vineyard spreads on 4000 hectares.
It produces a very round sometimes even sweet (moelleux) pink wine with superb salmon hues.
It has a nice balance sugar-alcohol.
It is a dense, yet velvety wine, with hints of fresh mint and English sweet.
It is a delicious aperitif and dessert wine.
It should be drunk within two years of production and served at 8°C.
It's refreshing and very enjoyable on a warm summer evening!
Cabernet de Saumur - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Cabernet de Saumur is a dry rosé wine produced from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet d'Anjou - as its name suggests.
It has a beautiful and bright raspberry colour with pink hues.
This wine with aromas of red fruit is refreshing; it is a great aperitif wine that should be served at 12°C and drunk within 2 years of production.
Côteaux de l'Aubance - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Côteaux de l'Aubance is a 160ha vineyard that spreads over 10 communities to the south of Angers in Maine-et-Loire.
It was granted its AOC in 1950.
The slopes of the river Aubance were planted with Chenin Blanc.
This grape variety produces a sweet white with a deep yellow colour enhanced with golden hues.
This fresh and fine wine associates beautiful aromas of ripe white fruit, candied orange with floral hints.
It has a superb balance sugar-alcohol-acidity.
It is perfect for aperitif and should served at 8°C and keeps 10 years.
The grapes develop the Noble Rot or botrytis cintrea, a fungus that promotes sugar concentration, when harvested late.
The best grapes are individually selected.
They give the wine its golden colour with ambre hues and rich aromas of candied fruit and honey.
It is excellent with foie gras and desserts and keeps up to 15 years!
Côteaux de Saumur - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Côteaux de Saumur is a small vineyard of 50ha that unfolds in 20 communities in Maine-et-Loire, 2 in Deux-Sèvres and 9 in Vienne.
It produces a sweet white that was granted an AOC 1962.
Late harvesting promotes the appearance of the Noble rot.
The desiccated grapes are selected by hand and produce a wine with beautiful aromas of honey.
Its deep golden colour with beautiful amber hues becomes deeper if the grapes were affected by the Noble Rot.
This elegant wine then develops a superb balance sugar-alcohol-acidity and beautifully combines amazing aromas of honey and candied fruit.
It should be served at 10°C with foie gras and desserts.
The best vintages keep at least 15 years.
Côteaux du Layon - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Côteaux du Layon is a 1,400ha vineyard that unfolds in 27 municipalities in southwestern of Angers in Maine-et-Loire.
This excellent sweet white wine is produced essentially from Chenin Blanc.
It is one of the most sought after Anjou-Saumur AOC.
The vineyards are located on the slopes of the river Layon, where the ambient humidity and mild climate favour the appearance of the Noble Rot.
The fungus coats and dehydrates the grapes, which are manually harvested once ripe.
The AOC Côteaux du Layon includes specific geographical denominations that correspond to terroirs that favour a high sugar yield.
These small vineyards which can add their name after the appellation Côteaux-du-Layon are:
Beaulieu-sur-Layon, Chaume, Faye d’anjou, Rablay-sur-Layon, Rochefort sur-Loire, Saint-Aubin-de-Luigné and Saint-Lambert-du-Lattay.
Some wines are also labelled with the words 'selection de grains nobles’ if the grapes were affected by botrytis.
The Côteaux du Layon 'standard' has a nice yellow colour with gold or green hues.
It is a beautiful soft, light, elegant and refreshing wine with a nice acidity and great aromas of honey.
The Côteaux du Layon that are produced with grapes that have been coated with the Noble Rot are even more structured and refined.
They have beautiful aromas of candied fruits that fluctuate depending of the soils and that develop floral notes as they mature.
The Côteaux du Layon were granted an AOC in 1950 and are perfect with foie gras or as aperitif.
They keep a long time, and the great vintages forever!
Crémant de Loire - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Discover the Crémant de Loire, a fizzy white or rosé wine produced in Anjou-Saumur and Touraine regions.
Haut Poitou - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Discover the Haut Poitou, a wine produced in Anjou-Saumur and Touraine regions.
Quarts de Chaume - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Quarts de Chaume is a wonderful sweet white.
This 50ha vineyard located in Rochefort in the southwest of Angers (Maine-et-Loire) is the star wine of the Loire Valley!
The vines grow on the sunny slopes between the Loire and Layon rivers.
They benefit from the moisture and mild climate that triggers the appearance of the Noble Rot that dehydrates the grapes and promotes the concentration of sugar and aromas of honey.
This wine was granted an AOC in 1950, however, has been known since the 11th century.
Local legend has it that the Seigneur de Chaume obtained the right to retain a quarter - quart - of the production of his vineyard while the rest went to his lord.
This wonderful sweet wine has emerald hues that turn deep gold with amber hues during the maturation process.
It is soft and elegant yet lively; it has a superb balance sugar-alcohol-acidity and amazing aromas of honey, spices and exotic fruits.
It should be served at 9°C with foie gras and gourmet fruit desserts.
The great vintages keep at least 20 years, the other 5 years easily.
Rosé d'Anjou - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Rosé d'Anjou was created in the late 19th century, when the French vineyard was entirely replanted after the epidemics of phylloxera.
It is produced mainly from Grolleau with Cabernets, Gamay, Cot and Pineau d'Aunis.
It is a simple, fun and sweet wine.
Winemakers indeed have the right to leave between 7g and 20g of residual sugar per liter.
The area of production of the Rosé d'Anjou amounts to 2500ha, which are distributed all over the AOC Anjou area.
The Rosé d'Anjou is a pale to medium pink colour wine.
It is a round, fresh and easy to drink wine with aromas of red and black fruit and a good balance acidity-alcohol-sugar.
It is ideal with desserts made from red fruits or as aperitif; it should be drunk young and served at 10°C.
Rosé de Loire - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Discover the Rosé de Loire, a light and dry rosé wine produced in Anjou-Saumur and Touraine regions.
Saumur - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
1- The Saumur rouge is produced from Cabernet Franc with 30% or less of Cabernet Sauvignon and Pineau d'Aunis.
It has a glowing ruby colour with violet hues and aromas of red and black fruit.
Rich in fine tannins, it is a dense, aromatic and elegant wine.
'Standard' wines should be drunk young, however, some great vintages keep more than 10 years!
They are excellent served at 16°C with red meats.
2- The appellation Saumur Puy-Notre-Dame was recognized in 2006.
This dry red wine with a rich colour is robust, powerful and strong with fine tannins, and aromas of red and black fruits.
It is essentially produced from Cabernet Franc noir with 15% (maxi) of Cabernet Sauvignon.
It should be served at 15°C with grilled red meats; it keeps at least 15 years.
3- The Saumur blanc is pale yellow.
It is an excellent fine, fresh, mineral and well balanced wine with aromas of white fruits with floral and mineral notes.
It should be served at 13°C with seafood and fish; the great vintages keep more than 10 years.
4- The Saumur mousseux blanc is a sparkling white with an attractive pale yellow colour enhanced with golden hues.
It is a wine with fine bubbles, light and dense foam with aromas of white fruit.
It is fresh and lively and should be served at 8°C as aperitif.
5- The Saumur mousseux rosé (sparkling) has a lovely salmon pink colour.
It is a powerful wine with tannins and aromas of red fruit; it should be served at 8°C with unusual dishes and desserts.
Saumur Champigny - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
The Saumur Champigny is another great wine of the Loire Valley!
This 1580ha vineyard spreads over 9 municipalities located between Saumur and Montsoreau in Maine-et-Loire.
It produces a superb red wine that was granted its AOC in 1936.
The name Champigny comes from the Latin campus igni - hot lands, as this region undergoes hot summers.
The Saumur Champigny is produced from Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.
These grape varieties extract their nutrients from gravel, sand and clay over limestone.
This delicious deep ruby colour with purple hues wine has aromas of red and black fruits, with flowery and sometimes spicy notes.
It is a soft, supple and dense wine with deep tannins, yet light and refreshing.
It keeps 10 years and should be served at 16°C with lamb and andouillette.
Savennières - Anjou-Saumur Vineyard
Savennières is a dry, semi-dry or sweet white wine produced with Chenin Blanc.
This 300ha vineyard is located in Savennières, La Possonnière and Bouchemaine, southwest of Angers in Maine-et-Loire.
Its two outstanding vintages, La Coulée de Serrant and La Roche aux Moines, turn it into a star wine of the Loire Valley!
The vineyard benefits from a unique terroir consisting of schist, sandstone and sand.
Two thousands years ago the Romans planted the vines on the south facing slopes of the small river Loir.
The Benedictine monks developed the vineyard during the Middle Ages.
Savennières produces mostly dry and semi-dry white wine; the sweet Savennières is indeed very rare.
The Savennières has a beautiful straw yellow colour with green hues, and aromas of flowers, citrus, white fruits and minerals.
It is a versatile wine, very fresh, very refined and harmonious which can keep 15 years, and is ideal with fish and white meat and that should be served at 11°C .
La Coulée de Serrant
The Cistercian monks planted La Coulée de Serrant vineyard in the 12th century.
This exceptional wine has a lovely pale yellow colour enhanced with straw hues and aromas of yellow fruit and exotic flowers.
This is a complex wine, dense, noble and very lively.
It has a great balance in minerals and persistent aromas.
This ‘divine nectar’ as wine experts like to call it, keeps for 15 years.
It should be served at 11°C with sea or river fish.
La Coulée de Serrant doux (sweet) is rare, as it is produced with grapes affected by the Noble Rot.
It has an amazing array of candied fruit, white flowers and exotic fruits aromas.
La Roche aux Moines
La Roche aux Moines has a pale bright yellow colour enhanced with green hues and aromas of white flowers and candied fruit.
This is a wine that combines great texture, nice freshness and superb aromatic!
It should be served at 11°C with crayfish.
The great vintages keep at least 10 years.
Photos Wikimedia Commons: Noble Rot - Vineyard around Savennières - Resource and map - Please remember to drink responsibly www.drinkaware.co.uk – L'abus d'alcool est dangereux pour la santé, à consommer avec modération - Resource and map Vin-Vigne