Tucked away in the village of Rochefort-sur-Loire, just south of the town of Savennieres is Domaine des Baumard. The property has been in the Baumard family since 1634, but was revitalized by Jean Baumard in the mid-1950s. Now managed by Jean’s son Florent, the Domaine is considered one of the top producers in the Loire Valley and a reference point for Savennieres and the sweet wines of Coteaux du Layon. The estate is farmed according to organic principles. Florent believes in using as little intervention as possible in the vineyard and in the cellar. Yields are low (generally 1.5 -2.5 tons per acre), and the grapes are always hand-harvested and pressed as quickly as possible to preserve freshness and aroma. Starting with the 2005 vintage, Baumard began bottling 100% of their production (excepting only Cremant) with Stelvin closures, becoming one of the pioneers of this technology in France. “Florent Baumard is a brilliant winemaker. If he had been born a Californian, Burgundian or Bordelais, wealthy vineyard owners would be standing in line to employ his services as a consultant…a young, handsome, ever-smiling sort, Baumard quietly fashions some of the world’s most complex dry and sweet wines in the sleepy village of Rochefort-sur-Loire. ~ Pierre Rovani, Wine Advocate
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