Discover the Saumur wine appellation
The Saumur vineyard, in the Loire Valley, was planted in 515, according to historical texts. Some linguistics professors suggest that the former name of Saumur used to be "Salmurus", from the Latin expression "Salva Murus". This described a fortified city, whose walls protected its inhabitants. Over the years, as was the case in many other French regions (Bordeaux, Burgundy, Alsace, Jura…), the city and its vineyard expanded greatly thanks to the work of the local monks. During the Middle Ages, the Saumur vineyard entered its golden age.
The Loire Valley was placed under the protection of the County of Anjou in the early 11th century. Safe from the Hundred Years' War and its destruction, peasants and bourgeois alike chose to make their own wine instead of letting the Church and the local lords have all the fun and reap all the benefits. The main grape varieties they planted were the Cabernet Franc (a red grape) and the Chenin (a white one). Plenty of wine merchants became rich thanks to the wine business, turning the city of Saumur into a thriving wine capital.
Sadly, the Saumur vineyard also had its share of crises. The 1789 French Revolution, the Vendée Wars, the 19th century phylloxera invasion… The grapevines took dozens of years to come back from the brink of destruction, but the vineyard became ever stronger as a result. Today, the Saumur vineyard represents 1,400 hectares of land (1,000 for white grapes, and 400 for red grapes), divided into 6 parts corresponding to as many sub-appellations. As for the main Saumur appellation, it has officially existed since 1936. The vineyard can produce 300,000 hectoliters of wine per year (which makes 28 millions of bottles in total).
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