The first sparking wine of France (before Champagne)

From the Oxford Companion to Wine:


Small town and appellation in the eastern Pyrenean foothills in southern France. For centuries it has been devoted to the production of white wines that would sparkle naturally after a second fermentation during the spring. They became known as Blanquette de Limoux, Blanquette meaning simply ‘white’ in Occitan. Locals claim that fermentation in bottle was developed here long before it was consciously practised in champagne, dating the production of cork-stoppered sparkling wines at the Abbey of St-Hilaire from 1531. (Limoux is just north of Cataluña.)

“Blanquette de Limoux is considered to be the first sparkling white wine produced in France, created long before the Champagne region became world renowned for the sparkling wine Champagne. The first textual mention of “blanquette”, from the Occitan expression for “the small white”, appeared in 1531 in papers written by Benedictine monks at an abbey in Saint-Hilaire. They detail the production and distribution of Saint-Hilaire’s blanquette in cork-stoppered flasks. The region’s location, north of the Cork Oak forest of Cataluña, gave Limoux producers easy access to the material needed to produce secondary fermentation in the flask, which produces the bubbles necessary for sparkling wine.” (from the Wiki.)

At Vino Vino we are very stoked to be pouring the Antech Limoux “Cuvée Eugénie”.

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