Because we visit small and medium sized wineries it is often possible to meet the winemaker. Wineries in the Loire Valley tend to be family run, often involving multiple generations and sometimes hundreds of years. The winemakers come to the role already imbued with a sense of what their wine should be like, full of passion for their craft and fiercely proud of their background. But these days they all go to college too, to learn the latest scientific principles of winemaking and about the wine industry in general. Many of them take a year out and work in wineries overseas.
Joe and Caryn, from Washington DC, got to meet Alexandre Monmousseau at the Château Gaudrelle cave, who gave them a personal tour of the winemaking facilities and took them through a tasting afterwards. Here you see them engaged in a lively discussion about why Vouvray wine is made according to very strict rules, and why vintage and terroir matter so much in France. They came away with a genuine appreciation for the dedication, knowledge and skill of people like Alexandre, and they 'really liked the guy'.
If you are interested in wine and would like to meet small producers in the Loire Valley, email us.