The Wines Of Touraine cont 2
White, red and rosé wines from the same grape varieties as Touraine, but grown
These wines must have one more degree of alcohol than the Touraine tout court,
hence more concentration of flavour.
The whites are generally dry, with a pale greeny-gold colour, soft fruit and
They can age well and are at their best with hors d'ouvres, especially pâtés,
fish, white meats and goat's cheese.
The rosés are attractive and fruity and the reds are slightly rough and acidic,
but go well with food.
Touraine Azay Le Rideau
A small production of white and rosé wines.
The wines are made from the Pineau de Ia Loire, and the rosés must have a
minimum of 60% Grolleau (or Groslot) in their make-up, with 40% coming from
other varieties. Both wines may be very slightly sweet, and are excellent for
picnics, light lunches and everyday drinking.
Red and rosé wines principally from the Cabernet Franc (with the Cabernet
Sauvignon tolerated to a maximum of 20%) covering 900 hectares on the right bank
of the Loire between Tours and Saumur.
The most important communes are Bourgueil, Restigné, Ingrandes and Benais, where
the marked difference in the soil produces quite different styles of wine.
The gravelly-alluvial soil on the plain (Restigné, Ingrandes) produces
quick-maturing wines with much bouquet and finesse; the coteaux (Benais,
Bourgueil), where the topsoil is gravel with a clay-limestone base (le tuffeau),
produces deeper-coloured, meatier wines that need more time.
A good Bourgueil (often a blend of the two styles) will have a lovely
garnet-ruby colour, a bouquet reminiscent of raspberries, with a lively,
sometimes rustic fruit and clean, dry finish.
In poor years they tend to be rather thin, while in very sunny vintages (1976,
1985) they can have a huge colour and intensity of fruit that puts them in the
category of fine wines.
Red Bourgueil can be drunk (served cool) the year or two after the vintage,
while the best wines last 10 years or more.
The rosé has a delightfully pale, violetty-pink colour and is the perfect summer
wine. Production, from a maximum yield of 40 hi/ha, is around 5 million bottles