Dry, crisp Sauvignon Blanc is the trademark of Reuilly. Though the appellation also grows Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris, creating fruity red and dry rosé wines.
Southeast of Bourges, Reuilly covers over 288 hectares (712 acres) from the banks of the Arnon River to the Cher River. The appellation is located in the Indre and Cher departments and extends over seven villages: Reuilly, Diou, Lazenay, Chéry, Lury, Cerbois and Preuilly. Grapes are grown on moderately steep chalky-marly slopes and on high sandy-gravelly terraces.
Reuilly vineyards are traced back to the early 7th century. King of the Franks, Dagobert I, gave the land that is now known as Reuilly to the Abbey of Saint-Denis. These vineyards supplied wine to the medieval towns of Bourges and Vierzon. The wine was transported by way of the Cher River to the Loire River, where it was shipped as far away as England and Flanders.
In 1365, the Duke of Berry, son of the King of France, issued a charter governing wine production in Reuilly. The king’s charter fixed the harvesting dates and established a levy on all wines sold. At the end of the 19th century, after the devastated phylloxera vines were replanted, the first producers’ syndicates were created. After a lull, a winemaking revival occurred in the 1980s.
The grapevines are planted on moderately sloping hillsides of calcareous marl and on elevated sand and gravel terraces.
The Vendanges (grape harvest) in Centre-Loire begin between the last week of September and the first week of October, ending the last two weeks of October. It starts with the Pinot Gris harvest in Reuilly and continues with Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc. Some grapes are still harvested by hand, particularly red grapes, though most are picked with mechanical grape harvesters. The grapes are sent to the modern wine storehouses for processing. In the Centre-Loire, three winemaking methods are employed.
White Reuilly wines are fresh and fruity. They reveal floral aromas melting into a round mouthfeel. The reds are full, luscious and light. They are decidedly fruit-forward. As for the rosés, or “gris”, they are soft and delicate.
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