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2020 Vin de France Rouge Cabernet Franc “Huguette”

Grange Saint Sauveur
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Huguette is a silky, peppery Cabernet Franc from vines over a century in age. Alice and Antoine Pouponneau now farm this small clos, which they have begun working biodynamically to ensure the old vines send their roots deep into the chalky subsoil. The tuffeau, as this spongy white stone is called in the Loire, provides depth and structure to the wine, while the sandy topsoil lends a lovely silkiness to the texture. This stellar new cuvée can be enjoyed now—preferably decanted—or better yet, aged for several years before consumption.

Anthony Lynch

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Technical Information
Wine Type: red
Vintage: 2020
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Cabernet Franc
Appellation: Vin de France
Country: France
Region: Loire
Producer: Grange Saint-Sauveur
Winemaker: Alice Gitton-Pouponneau and Antoine Pouponneau
Vineyard: 70 years average
Soil: Sand, limestone
Aging: Élevage for 18 months in demi-muids (400-600 liter) before aging 12 months in bottle
Farming: Biodynamic (practicing)
Alcohol: 12%

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About The Region

Loire

map of Loire

The defining feature of the Loire Valley, not surprisingly, is the Loire River. As the longest river in France, spanning more than 600 miles, this river connects seemingly disparate wine regions. Why else would Sancerre, with its Kimmeridgian limestone terroir be connected to Muscadet, an appellation that is 250 miles away?

Secondary in relevance to the historical, climatic, environmental, and cultural importance of the river are the wines and châteaux of the Jardin de la France. The kings and nobility of France built many hundreds of châteaux in the Loire but wine preceded the arrival of the noblesse and has since out-lived them as well.

Diversity abounds in the Loire. The aforementioned Kimmderidgian limestone of Sancerre is also found in Chablis. Chinon, Bourgueil, and Saumur boast the presence of tuffeau, a type of limestone unique to the Loire that has a yellowish tinge and a chalky texture. Savennières has schist, while Muscadet has volcanic, granite, and serpentinite based soils. In addition to geologic diversity, many, grape varieties are grown there too: Cabernet Franc, Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, and Melon de Bourgogne are most prevalent, but (to name a few) Pinot Gris, Grolleau, Pinot Noir, Pineau d’Aunis, and Folle Blanche are also planted. These myriad of viticultural influences leads to the high quality production of every type of wine: red, white, rosé, sparkling, and dessert.

Like the Rhône and Provence, some of Kermit’s first imports came from the Loire, most notably the wines of Charles Joguet and Château d’Epiré—two producers who are featured in Kermit’s book Adventures on the Wine Route and with whom we still work today.

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Inspiring Thirst

A good doctor prescribed the wine of Nuits-Saint-Georges to the Sun King, Louis XIV, when he suffered an unknown maladie. When the king’s health was restored the tasty remedy enjoyed a vogue at court. Lord, send me a doctor like that!

Inspiring Thirst, page 117

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