> IGP Loire Valley

IGP Loire Valley

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Protected Geographical Indication (IGP) since August 2009

Vineyards

Location
Production of Loire Valley  IGP wines is permitted across 14 Departments in the  Loire Valley  winegrowing region, namely Loire  Atlantique, Vendée, Maine-et-Loire, Deux- Sèvres, Sarthe, Indre-et-Loire, Vienne, Loir- et-Cher, Indre, Loiret, Cher, Nièvre, Allier and Puy de Dôme.

Regulations specify that the following geographical names may be  added  to  the Loire Valley IGP descriptor  where applicable: Allier, Cher,  Indre,  Indre-et-  Loire,  Loir-et-Cher,   Loire-Atlantique,  Loiret, Maine-et-Loire, Nièvre, Sarthe, Vendée, Vienne, Marches de Bretagne and Pays de Retz.

Vineyard Area
4,230 ha.

History
The Vins de Pays classification came into being  in  1968;  on  16th  November  a new name was created for designated wines made in the Loire Valley – Vin de Pays du Jardin de la France. A further decree, dated 11th May 2007, replaced this  name;  wines were henceforth known as Vin de Pays de Val de Loire.

However, since August 2009, Vins de Pays wines  have  a  new quality  marker   recognised at European level: Indication Géographique Protégée, or IGP (Protected Geographical Indication).

Although  there  are   no   legal   barriers   to   its   use,   the   Vin    de    Pays    name    is slowly  disappearing  as  wines   adopt   the  new Val de Loire IGP label.

Production of IGP wines is governed by French and EU regulations setting out production conditions.  The  rules  are   less   stringent  than AOC regulations, and give winemakers and négociants more flexibility to be creative and produce a range of distinctive wines.

Soils
The Loire and its tributaries flow  through  a  variety  of   geological   landscapes ranging from the Massif  Armoricain   in   the   Nantais   and   Anjou    to the limestone of Saumur and Touraine and volcanic rock of Auvergne.

 

Climate
In general, the Loire climate is temperate, with oceanic influences in the Nantes and Anjou regions. In Touraine these influences gradually become more continental, so that by the time we reach Centre-Loire, the climate is semi- continental. Precipitation is even throughout  the year (between 600 and 700 mm) and  temperatures  are  mild, showing no extremes. Despite a very broad range  of  climate  and  soil conditions, the Loire Valley shows good degree of consistency by virtue of their northerly location.

Wine
Average annual production over the last 5 years: 243,000 hl.
White: 139,400 hl,
Red: 52,400 hl,
Rosé: 51,200 hl.
Maximum yield: 90 hl/ha.

Varietals
Whites: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Grolleau Gris, Chenin, Pinot Gris, Folle Blanche,   Melon,   Orbois,   Pinot   Blanc, Sacy, Sauvignon Gris.
Reds and rosés: Gamay, Cabernet Franc, Grolleau noir, Grolleau Gris, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Merlot, Pineau d’Aunis, Abouriou, Cabernet Sauvignon, Côt (or Malbec), Egiodola, Gamay de Bouze, Gamay de Chaudenay, Négrette.

Growing Practices
These vary according to grape variety and region.

TASTING NOTES
White wines are largely dry with a distinctive vibrancy and delicate floral and fruity flavors. Rosés are light, bright and refreshing, while reds can be light or robust in structure, but always with a distinctive suppleness.

There are three more IGPs covering a more limited geographical area; these are IGP Côtes de la Charité and Coteaux de Tannay in Nièvre, IGP Coteaux du Cher et de l’Arnon in Cher and Indre and one further IGP, IGP Calvados – in the same administrative area.

 
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