Saumur was the capital of the Huguenots under King Henri IV (16th cent.) but had already been an important trading place since the 12th century. The first Cabernet Franc grapevine was planted in the 17th century by order of Cardinal de Richelieu.
In the Saumur appellation area, the Champigny name is added to the quality label for the red wines: “Saumur Champigny”. The vineyards are located around 9 villages close to Saumur: Montsoreau, Turquant, Parnay, Souzay-Champigny, Dampierre-sur-Loire, Saumur, Varrains, Chacé and Saint-Cyr-en-Bourg. The Saumur-Champigny AOC was created in 1957 and covers an area of 1,580 hectares.
The vineyard is scattered into islets, on tuffeau (chalk local name) slopes and Senonian or Eocene outcrops. The Saumur-Champigny vines are usually located on the Turonian chalky plateaus or on the ones covering the tuffeau subsoil.
Saumur-Champigny Wines, only made from Cabernet Franc, display a bright, garnet red color. Light and structured on the palate, they have fine and velvety tannins as well as a fresh and balanced finish.