Sancerre is a wine region on the banks of the Loire. In this region there are numerous hills full of vineyards that form a great landscape. In Sancerre different soils and microclimates enables the cultivation of different varieties for wine production. From 250-400 meters above sea level, this area is characterized by dry winters, reliable rainfall for the months of May and July, and heat in the months of August and September.
The vineyards of Sancerre were created in the Middle Ages. King Henry IV was a lover of good wine. According to the legend, King Henry IV used to say that the local wine was so good, that wars would not have existed if his enemies had tried it. During the nineteenth century the wines of Sancerre, Beaujolais and Côtes-du-rhône were the closest and best-selling wines in Paris. At this time the wine had soft colors and poor concentration, as they were very exhausted to offer larger quantities. This technique led to booming sales of white wines.
The grapes most commonly used to make wines of Sancerre are Sauvignon Blanc for whites and Pinot Noir for reds. In the late nineteenth century were grown Pinot Noir and Gamay for reds and for whites Meslier and Sauvignon. But it was not until after the First World War that the wine country truly developed, replanting the area with Sauvignon.
Until the late 80s and early 90s all Sancerre white wines were fermented and aged bypassing or oak wood barrels. They were carried out in steel tanks without lees for approximately six months before bottling. In recent years, many producers use wood for the fermentation process, producing the best cuvées in the oldest vines. Producers Thomas-Labaille Crochet create late harvest during favorable vintages.
The reds are not very colorful, but they are very aromatic with red fruit, licorice, cinnamon and flower tastes. The pink ones have opened color, aromas of fruit, mint, and pepper.
Want to try wines from Sancerre? We recommend:
Sancerre Saget Rouge 375ml 2009
Sancerre Pierre Archambaut Rosé 2009