Anjou > Coteaux du Layon
Coteaux du Layon
AOP/AOC by decree dated 18th February 1950, amended 23rd November 2011
Location: The Coteaux du Layon appellation covers an area of 20 communes in Maine et Loire along the banks of the Layon, a small tributary of the Loire.
Vineyard Area: Approximately: 1,640 ha.
History and Soil: From around 1579, the vineyards along the banks of the Layon were developed mainly by Dutch merchants, The local wines had high alcohol levels (16-17%) which meant they travelled well; high The wines were well-suited to Dutch tastes, and their high quality (and therefore price) meant they were able to bear the export tax levied by Brittany. The process of harvesting the grapes affected by noble rot in successive passes was already in use here in the 18th century.
Climate: Temperate oceanic and particularly dry. The appellation vineyards grow on slopes with good sun exposure and ventilation, encouraging early plant growth (this is a microclimate in which Mediterranean plants thrive) and reliably overripe harvests.
Average annual production over the last 5 years: 43,000 hl including 38,100 for AOP Coteaux du Layon
Base yields: 35 hl/ha.
Grape Variety: Chenin Blanc.
Minimum planting density: 4,000 vines per hectare Pruning: Double guyot to 2×3 bud or gobelet to 3×2 bud.
Manual harvests in successive passes, selecting only overripe grapes with good concentration, with or without noble rot.
- Appearance: Deep golden colour with hints of green, developing into old gold with amber highlights.
- Nose: Intense and complex: acacia honey with overtones of lemongrass; candied fruit including pineapple, apricot and quince.
- Palate: Full and rounded, succulent at times, but always balanced by a crisp, refreshing vibrancy. Good aromatic persistence, lifted by notes of fresh fruit.
- To serve: Decant into a carafe and serve well chilled at 8° to experience the wine as it evolves.
A classic perfect partner for foie gras, blue cheeses and desserts: foie gras on toast, pan-fried foie gras with fruit, Roquefort, warm plum tart, desserts with frangipane or almond paste.
From 5 years to several decades. Even up to a century for a particularly good vintage.