Winery: Progressive winemaker Frantz Saumon is the man behind the negociant label of “Un Saumon Dans la Loire,” or a “Salmon in the Loire”. His own small estate [6 hectares] located in Montlouis in the Loire, was established in 2002. Un Saumon Dans la Loire has allowed him to buy 3 to 4 hectares of additional grapes each year. He is known for his pure flavours, “always looking for clean wines and thriving for dryness”. His Petillant Naturels [Pét-Nat] are recognized as some of the best in the Loire region.
Winemaking: Frantz Saumon has always practiced organic and biodynamic farming. He uses only indigenous yeasts for fermentation and never fines or filters. Wines are aged in a stainless steel tanks and wood barrels of different sizes.
Tasting Notes: Brilliant cherry red in colour, with aromas of chocolate covered cherries dusted with crushed pink peppercorn. Cherry, blackberry, a slice of red apple, and dry minerals sprightly zip along on solid, frothy bubbles. Chocolate covered cherries return on the dry finish, along with a slight hint of white truffle. Elegant and cheery, fantastic on its own or a fun companion with a wide variety of dishes.
Côt [Malbec], Gamay, and Grolleau blend [percentages vary depending on vintage]
Vin de France
Bottling information not listed
Naturally sparkling Cabernet Franc; fruity & fizzy, delightfully different.
Estate: Located in the historic village of Oiron in the Loire region of southern France, Domaine des Terres is headed by Benoit and Celine Blet. The couple had met an older gentleman who was considering the sale of his vineyards, and after living with him on his property for 6 months; he considered them to be the right caretakers of his vineyards.
Winemaking: “Benoit is a passionate believer in minimalist natural wine making.” Vineyards are farmed biodynamically, only native yeasts are used, and the only additive ever used is minimal amounts of sulphur. Crafted using the pét-nat [pétillant naturel] or Ancestral Méthod.
Tasting Notes: Garnet in colour with pink frothy bubbles, aromas of cranberry, cherry and chocolate. Fruit driven with cherry, blackberry and a hint of red apple buoyed by compact, small bubbles. Rich chocolate and a hint of funk comprise the dry, fizzy finish.
Pairing Suggestions from the Winemaker: As an aperitif, or with a chocolate dessert (Black Forest). To be enjoyed young between 6 and 8 ° C [43-47 ° F].
100% Cabernet Franc
Estate: Le Sot de l’Ange translates to “Idiot Angel” of Azay-Le-Rideau, and refers to the decision “energetic and young” winemaker Quentin Bourse made when he took over a friend’s domaine in a tiny, off the radar appellation. Azay-Le-Rideau is located within the Touraine AOC, in the Loire Valley and has a winemaking history that dates back to the Romans. The 12 hectare estate has been certified biodynamic for over 10 years; Quentin’s first vintage was 2013.
Winemaking: Quentin manages the entire estate himself, by hand; his friends give help with harvest. Vineyard soil is predominately clay over silica. Crafted in the Pét-nat [pétillant naturel] manner, an ancient method of making sparkling wines.
Tasting Notes: Venetian red* in colour with aromas of strawberry, cherry, minerals and a hint of sweet funk. Packed with tart cherry andblackberry flavours with a streak of lemony acidity. Fine, light bubbles are the foil to a shake of nutmeg and sprinkle of funk on the dry finish. Refreshing and gluggable, this is a wonderfully distinctive wine well worth seeking out.
*[Yes, at the risk of sounding pretentious I used Venetian. I could have said cherry red, but I felt Venetian really is the better descriptor. Ahhh, art school.]
As to be expected with such an engaging, esoteric wine, details such as vintage year, varietal percentage, alcohol content and bottling info are at times a bit enigmatic. I do believe this is the 2014 vintage, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
100% Gamay or a blend of Gamay and Grolleau