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2020 Domaine Sauvète Sauvignon Touraine AOC, Loire Valley, France (750ml)

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Founded in 1905, Domaine Sauvète boasts four generations of artisan winemakers in Touraine. The family farms its 40 acres of vineyard land according to organic principles, and is certified organic by Ecocert. In recent years, they have incorporated more biodynamic practices, such as using plant-based teas and preparations to help combat vine maladies, and working according to the lunar calendar.

The family vineyards in Monthou-sur-Cher are exactly what you would expect in terms of great terroir—their hand-tended plots are found on a south-facing, stony plateau overlooking the river Cher, and are chock-full of older vines. Half of the estate’s vineyard holdings is dedicated to white grapes, located on a higher-altitude plateau, the red grapes grow on south-facing hillsides that are very rocky. Touraine’s claim to fame in ancient days was the mining of gunflint, and this legacy is what gives its local Sauvignon Blanc its raciness and minerality. In some areas, flint stones are everywhere—pick up two rocks, bash them together, and it’s just like firing a cap gun!

Most work is performed by hand, with the goal of keeping the land and the vine in balance. Harvest each year is performed also by hand. Each vineyard parcel is vinified separately to preserve and track its distinctive character. This wine is 100% Sauvignon Blanc from 20-40-year-old vines. The grapes were immediately pressed then fermented on indigenous yeasts in temperature-controlled tanks. The resulting wine was aged briefly in tank, with regular lees stirring, and was lightly filtered before bottling.

Aromas of fresh citrus and crushed oyster shell. Fresh and light on the palate with flinty minerality and a classic Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc flavor profile. The finish is long, juicy, lemony and gracefully balanced. This bright and racy bottle is sure to give many a Sancerre a run for its money!

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