Laurent Charrier and his mother run Domaine du Pas St Martin, a small property in Saumur that also has holdings in Anjou and Coteaux du Layon. Laurent took over production in 1994 from his grandfather (winemaking skipped a generation, as his father wasn’t interested). Laurent immediately set out to receive organic certification, which he acquired in 1997. The domaine itself is set among troglodyte caves formed out of ancient fossilized marine life that covered the region 10 million years ago. During the middle ages the caves served the Protestants as secret places of worship.
Grolleau (Noir) is generally a grape for rosé or blending in the Loire as it tends to make high acid, kind of lean wine all on its own. But when done correctly, it can make a fresh, fruity, and spicy little number like Sous le Tilleul (translates to: under the lime tree). This wine is fermented whole cluster in stainless steel. Put a little chill on it; it’s versatile and will take you from the beach to the fall table.
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