The Loire Valley continues to be the epicenter of modern of French winemaking. As other regions struggle with unusually warm summers, the Loire has become a reliable place for freshness and balance, a result of a cooler climate and a dedicated organic viticulture.
Winemakers Celine and Didier Sanzay are fifth generation growers in Saumur-Champigny.. Their wines are pure Cabernet Franc, and fit modern style — small batch, organic, limited oak, concerned with balance and freshness rather than extraction and muscle. They use all wild yeasts, neither fine nor filter, and produce subtle, natural expressions of the charming central Loire.
Sanzay’s regular cuvée of Saumur-Champigny is terrific — well priced and bursting with vibrant Cab Franc fruit. Today we’re suggesting their old-vine cuvée, a step up in intensity, longevity, and depth. It’s made from vines aged 50-110 years, and spends a year in oak barrels (none new).
The nose is delicate and pretty, with violets, plums, and red currants. The mouth is dense and very refined, with added notes of plum, allspice and black pepper. This is expertly made Cabernet Franc, with enough intensity to carry it for at least another five years. Serve today after an hour in a decanter — it’s a vibrant, affordable break from your Rhône red fallbacks.
Sanzay Saumur-Champigny VV 2018
bottle price: $28
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