Savennières has a terroir known for its exceptional dry white wines. They are also known as "grands crus" of the Loire Valley, which gives these wines a very special reputation. But even if the Savennières wines are mostly dry, they can also be vinified as semi-dry or sweet.
Part of the Loire Valley vineyards, the Savennières appellation area is located not far from Angers. It is greatly appreciated for its range of dry white wines. Moreover, its drinks are categorized among the great vintages of the Loire Valley.
The Savennières appellation, a vineyard developed by the monks
The AOC Savennières is located north of the Loire, 15 km south-west of Angers. It covers an area of 350 hectares and includes 3 communes: Savennières, Bouchemaine and La Possonnière. If it is very extensive, the appellation only exploits 150 hectares for the cultivation of grapes giving dry, semi-dry and sweet wines.
Historically, wine-growing activities in this part of France began in Roman times. However, it was not until the 12th century, under the impetus of the abbeys, that they really began to expand.
Later, around the 19th century, they continued to develop. The production area obtained the title of AOC thanks to a decree of December 8, 1952. Les Savennières then became one of the 3 Grands Crus of Anjou, along with Bonnezeaux and Quart-de-Chaume.
Planted on sheltered slopes, the AOC is spread over schist soils with volcanic veins and aeolian sands. In order to obtain quality Savennières wines, the winegrowers rely on the semi-oceanic climate of the area. It is ideal for the production of the dry white wines for which the appellation is known for.
How to recognize the Savennières appellation
To produce this grand cru, the winegrowers use the Chenin Blanc grape variety. In the production area, the winegrowers favour organic farming and biodynamics. They harvest the grapes by hand to carry out a sorting process. Thus, they can pick the bunches of grapes that have the desired maturity.
Usually, the Savennières wines have a pale yellow colour. It can be nuanced by hints of green for young wines and gold for wines produced in a hot year. If you smell these wines, you will notice aromas of white flowers such as acacia.
Add to that fragrances of linden, chamomile and mineral touches. Once the whites are well aerated, they develop ripe fruit or dried fruit scents.
When tasted, the wines of Les Savennières are harmonious. You will be surprised by their structure and delicacy, as well as by the balance they offer between freshness and smoothness. A strong mineral taste will also intrigue you.
The Savennières appellation, a visit to the estates to get to know it better
Would you like to know more about the Savennières appellation? Take a tour of the estates near the production area. You will get all the answers to your questions while purchasing various Savennières wines.
Start with the Château Soucherie located near Angers. Here you will learn valuable information about the production of the different appellations.
Then go to Martigné-Briand, 30 km from Angers. You will find there the Domaine des Deux Arcs. The owner of the place will show you his vineyard and show you the transformation methods of the grape varieties, including Chenin.
After these visits and the purchase of Savennières wines, you will have to find the best food and wine pairings in order to appreciate them.
The white wines of the appellation make a good companion for an aperitif, various fish, a crayfish gratin or white meat. Reveal all the flavours and scents of these drinks by preparing a blanquette of monkfish in cassolette or a matelote with Riesling.
The dry Savennières is to be served with sweetbreads with artichoke or veal blanquette with mushrooms. For semi-dry or sweet wines, choose a duck with yellow peaches.