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Loire

Praised for its stately Renaissance-era chateaux ...

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Praised for its stately Renaissance-era chateaux, the picturesque Loire valley produces pleasant wines of just about every style. Just south of Paris, the appellation lies along the river of the same name and stretches from the Atlantic coast to the center of France.

The Loire can be divided into three main growing areas, from west to east: the Lower Loire, Middle Loire, and Upper/Central Loire. The Pay Nantais region of the Lower Loire—farthest west and closest to the Atlantic—has a maritime climate and focuses on the Melon de Bourgogne variety, which makes refreshing, crisp, aromatic whites.

The Middle Loire contains Anjou, Saumur and Touraine. In Anjou, Chenin Blanc produces some of, if not the most, outstanding dry and sweet wines with a sleek, mineral edge and characteristics of crisp apple, pear and honeysuckle. Cabernet Franc dominates red and rosé production here, supported often by Grolleau and Cabernet Sauvignon. Sparkling Crémant de Loire is a specialty of Saumur. Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc are common in Touraine as well, along with Sauvignon Blanc, Gamay and Malbec (known locally as Côt).

The Upper Loire, with a warm, continental climate, is Sauvignon Blanc country, home to the world-renowned appellations of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. Pinot Noir and Gamay produce bright, easy-drinking red wines here.

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  • Clau de Nell Grolleau 2013 Front Label
    Clau de Nell Grolleau 2013
    Other Red Wine from Loire, France
    • W&S90
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    Currently Unavailable $64.99
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    64 99
    64 99
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  • Nicolas Joly Savennieres Les Vieux Clos 2013 Front Label
    Nicolas Joly Savennieres Les Vieux Clos 2013
    Chenin Blanc from Anjou, Loire, France
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    Currently Unavailable $41.99
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    41 99
    41 99
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  • Domaine Vincent Careme Vouvray Le Peu Morier 2013 Front Label
    Domaine Vincent Careme Vouvray Le Peu Morier 2013
    Chenin Blanc from Vouvray, Touraine, Loire, France
    • W&S93
    • WE91
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    Currently Unavailable $41.99
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    41 99
    41 99
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  • Clau de Nell Cuvee Violette 2013 Front Label
    Clau de Nell Cuvee Violette 2013
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Loire, France
    • W&S90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $49.99
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    52
    49 99
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