Saint Laurent – An unknown grape variety

Saint Laurent is a grape variety with a somewhat forgotten origin. In the past, it would have been cultivated in the south-west of France or in Alsace. However, it has disappeared from the French landscape but it has survived in Germany (Rheinhessen and Pfalz), Austria, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Luxembourg!

 

This grape variety is very popular in Austria but in terms of area, the Czech Republic has the largest cultivation. In 1911, the last parcel of St. Laurent in Luxembourg was replaced by more productive grape varieties such as Elbling. It came back in force in the early 2000s. In Germany, it also almost disappeared in the 1960s, but a winegrower in the Palatinate succeeded in producing new vines after conservative selections.

 

The origin of its name would be in connection with its date of maturation (veraison) that is to say August 10 and which also corresponds to Saint Laurent, the patron saint of cooks.

 

As for his genealogy or rather his genetic profile, it is not clear either. It was long believed to be a cousin of Pinot Noir, sharing some of its organoleptic characteristics. However, it would have obtained lately its letters of nobility by acquiring an independent status.

 

The grapes have thick skins with medium-sized berries. These are red wines colored (garnet red), fresh and full-bodied that can be vinified with ease. This early maturing variety is sensitive to millerandage or coulure but also to spring frosts. It only requires terroirs with average temperatures, such as those in northern regions, because it ripens early and offers good yields. It also appreciates clay-limestone soils like those of Luxembourg.

 

It gives crisp aromas, with a nice acidity and marked tannins. It offers fruity notes of morello cherry, elderberry, black currant and cocoa. Vinified in oak barrels, it becomes more rounded in terms of tannins and improves its aromatic complexity.

 

Wines made from this grape variety will perfectly complement your Sunday meals. It goes well with both light and strong dishes, game or matured cheese, depending on the body and aromas of your bottles.

Sparkle and Wine offers you a small selection.

 

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