Savoie – France’s Prominent Alpine Wine Region.



Most consumers in other parts of the world hardly ever see a bottle of Savoie wine since the majority of the production is consumed by tourists from Switzerland, Germany, Benelux states, Scandinavia and locals.

This mountainous region south and west of Geneva has less than 1700 hectares of vineyards. The majority of Savoie wines (66 per cent) are white. The vineyards are widely dispersed; in the flatter more sheltered parts of the region.

Savoie wines display aromatic characteristics, are medium bodied, relatively low in alcohol and meant for food. They are acid-driven mainly because of the altitude of vineyards and cool climate.

Appellation d’origine controllee was granted in the 11940’s.
The prolific jaquere is the most popular grape variety followed by rousette (a.k.a altesse), chardonnay, and roussanne (a.k.a Bergeron).
For red wines, growers prefer pinot noire, and mondeuse, which is said to be related to refosco in northern Italy. Mondeuse goes best with local, flavourful semi-hard cheeses.

Crepy, Seyssel, Roussette de Savoie, Abymes, Apremont, Arbin, Chignin, Cruet and Montmelian are appreciated by those like to enjoy fine, nuanced and light wines.

Savoie was originally comprised of parts in Italy, and Switzerland; today treh region is within France. The history of Savoie is turbulent and goes back to the Frankish Kingdom of Burgundy, int eh 10th century. After the collapse of this kingdom, Rudolph III, King of Burgundy, created the House of Savoy, in 1003. It has become the longest surviving dynasty in Europe.

It is a beautiful, rugged region and relies mostly on agriculture and tourism.

Regardless, France occupied Savoie in 1792 and again in 1815. After many small battles between Italy and France, the Treaty of 1860 was signed to annex the region to either country, pending the results of a plebiscite. France won and now administers it.

It is a tourist region in winter for skiers, and in the summer for hikers and those who enjoy the purity of mountain air.

Chambery, just south of Savoie is famous for its flavourful vermouths.
In addition to wines mentioned above, Mousseux de Savoie and Pettilant de Savoie are produced as specialties based on chardonnay.

Small amounts fo Abymes, Seyssel, ansd Crepy are exported to Switzerland, the U k, and the U S A.


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