Loire, of all colors

Loire, in all colors


The Loire is a long (rather) quiet river. Its shores, on the other hand, teem with life, bubbling with dynamism. Because from its source, in the Massif Central, to the Atlantic Ocean, the Loire Valley is home to the most diversified vineyard in France. A paradise for the enlightened and eclectic connoisseur, where wine comes in all colors, in all styles and with a multitude of personalities, all driven by both a centuries-old history and the ardor of a new generation. of winegrowers who push the boundaries of the terroir.

My thirst is less than before, but my affection for the wines of the Loire remains unchanged. I always succumb easily to the delicate salinity of a Muscadet or the elegant sobriety of a good Cabernet Franc from Chinon or Saumur-Champigny, or even to the restrained intensity of a Savennières or the timeless grace of an old Vouvray. . The temptation is all the greater as the prices, in general, remain affordable and the wines age admirably well. So many reasons to stock up on it for the cellar – I will come back to this in a future column. Until then, five red and white wines to enjoy now.


Henry Marionnet, Touraine 2020, Gamay, Domaine de La Charmoise

France 12 % | 2.3 g/L | ★★1/2 | $1/2 | $18.05


SAQ code: 329532

In the early 2000s, this red wine from Touraine was one of the good Gamays (almost) always available in outlets. It had then become a staple of my improvised picnics. The offer of supple and light red wines at the SAQ has since exploded, but the Marionnet Gamay has remained dear to my heart. Especially since the wine has not changed: juicy, fruity and delicately peppery, with lovely grainy tannins. Simple and good, for any occasion. 

Coralie and Damien Delecheneau, Touraine 2021, Ad Libitum

France 14 % | 1,2 g/L | ★★★1/2 | $$1/2 | $25.80


SAQ code: 14093228

Coralie and Damien Delecheneau lead their vineyard in biodynamics and sign a very good Touraine red, drinkable and satiating with freshness. The 2021 blend is dominated by Côt (Malbec), complemented by Gamay and Cabernet Franc, and the wine is bottled unfiltered. The nose reveals very pretty aromas of sour red fruits; the palate is initially juicy on the attack, but it does not lack chewiness. A real treat with grilled meats and roasted peppers. 

Vincent Carême, Vouvray 2020, Spring

France 12% | 3.8g/L | ★★★ | $$ | $19.90


SAQ code: 13594899

Vincent Carême is a master of Chenin Blanc and of developing the terroirs of Vouvray. This cuvée resulting from the purchase of grapes is vinified and aged without woody input and inevitably charms with its vitality and its delicate flavors of white fruits and white flowers. The fresh acidity is coated by careful aging on the lees. Well named and perfect for spring. 

Nicolas Grosbois, Chinon 2021, My mother's kitchen

France 12.5 % | 1.2 g/L – Organic | ★★★ | $$ | $19.50


SAQ code: 12782441

Nicolas Grosbois watches with his brother on a multipurpose agricultural land in the town of Panzoult, near Chinon. At the same time, he has also developed a small trading business, for which he buys organic grapes from local winegrowers. His 2021 is as fresh as a spring morning, without lacking substance; built around fine tannins that support the fruit until the end of the mouth. A very good tonic and vibrant Cabernet Franc. 

La Pépière, Muscadet-Sèvre Et Maine 2019, Clisson

France 12.5 % | 2.8 g/L – Biodynamic | ★★★★ | $$$ | $32.75


SAQ code: 14915877

The little Muscadet revolution continues. And the winegrowers of the Muscadet-Sèvre et Maine appellation continue to deepen their knowledge of their terroirs, which are expressed in many ways, through the melon de bourgogne grape variety. Here, in the granitic soils of Clisson (the southernmost of Muscadet's 10 communal crus), Marc Ollivier and Rémi Branger have produced an intense and vinous, but above all incredibly energetic white wine. An abundance of fruit, ripe, deep flavors, drawn on the finish by mouth-watering bitterness. If you haven't tasted muscadet in a while, you'll have enough to lose your bearings. And you will want more!

Adequate ★
Good ★★
Very good ★★★
Excellent ★★★★
Exceptional ★★★★★

< p>More stars than dollars: worth the price
As many stars as dollars: worth the price
Fewer stars than dollars: the wine is expensive