Before you start reading, don’t worry yourself. It’s not going to be another geography lesson. I’ll keep it mercifully short (hopefully). You might have to put up with a bit of geology, but sod it, you’ll just have to live with that. Today’s post is about why the Loire is a great place for Cabernet Franc to grow.
The Loire is that little bit higher up France, so further from the heat round the equator. As we saw yesterday, Cabernet Franc is a cold climate grape, so there we go. The weather and climate tends to suit this early budding, early ripening red.
The other thing is obviously the TERROIR. Why did I stick that in capitals? Cos I want you to learn this word. Mostly cos it’s a pain in the arse to explain each time I use it, but also to highlight its importance. Terroir is effectively everything specific to where the grapes are grown. The weather, the soil, the slope, the…well you get the picture. It’s why one wine from one plot tastes different to the plot over the other side of the valley.
In the Loire, and in particular the AOCs (controlled areas) in the middle of the Loire of Saumur, Chinon, and Bourgueil, you get lots of places that Cabernet Franc is the best grape to show off all the differences. The soft sandy banks known as tuffeau all the way to hillside limestone, it’s about as perfect as it gets. It means you can get anything from fresh early drinkers to more serious ageable efforts.
I think I’ve plumped for an early drinker this week.
Other Posts in #NWTW Week 29: