The Loire is a vast wine area beginning in the Massif Central extending to the city of Nantes on the Atlantic coast. The Loire wines can be split into 5 main groups.
Mainly white and roses which are light and fruity and some light red.
Pouilly sur Loire and Sancerre
Then we find the wines from Pouilly
sur Loire on the righthand bank of the river. The Pouilly Fume using the
Sauvignon grape and the Pouilly with Chasselas. On
the other side of the river is Sancerre, with its famous Sancerre white
using Sauvignon and some Pinot Noir. There is also a little Sancerre red.
Before arriving in the Touraine region there is also some more dry white Sauvignon wines from Reuilly, Quincy and Menetou-Salon.
One finds the following grapes in this region: Cabernet
franc, Sauvignon, Gamay, Cot, Grolleau Pineau d'Aunis and Pineau de la
Loire also known as Chenin Blanc. High quality reds and white are produced
and also some excellent roses.
At Vouvray and Montlouis, very good white wine which should be kept. You'll fin dry, medium and sweet and some effervescent. The latter produced in the same manner as Champagne.
At Chinon & Bourgueil a highly violet perfumed red wine using the Cabernet fanc grape for the Chinon and raspberry flavour for the Bourgueil, these wines can be drunk young or aged.
Within the Touraine appelation there are two principle wines a dry white from Sauvignon and a fresh and fruity red Gamay.
Touraine - Amboise produces red roses and white.
Touraine Azay le Rideau traditionally produces white, there is also a young appelation giving some rosé.
Rosés de Loire is a very dry rosé.
Produces red white and rosé. The grapes used for the red
and rosé are the Cabernet franc, cabernet Sauvignon, Gamay, Pineau d'Aunis,
le Cot and le Grolleau. For the whites it is the Chenin blanc and
in certain cases for some cuvee there is some Chardonnay and Sauvignon.
The rosé production is the most important for this region with the Rosé d'Anjou generally using the Grolleau, it is a medium dry fruity and is drunk young and fresh.
The Cabernet de Saumur is dry and light, Cabernet de Anjou medium dry.
From here we have the famous Muscadet
a light and fruity wine made from the Muscadet grape, the grape is picked
young and has a slow fermentation, very often the wine is bottled straight
after the fermentation which makes the wine slightly "bubbly".
There are three main appelations Muscadet, Muscadet des Coteaux de la Loire, le Muscadet de Sèvre et Maine.