Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 study trips won't be operating. Study trips will resume as soon as the situation allows. Thank you for your loyalty to the Wine Scholar Guild Study Trips, and please stay in good health!
Embark on our October 2020 Loire Wine Study Tour with professional-level instruction on site coupled with a certificate program!
Loire Wine Tour and Study Trip Highlights:
Become one of the few to understand and master the wines of this authentic part of France! Don’t miss this unique opportunity to travel through all the key appellations of this authentic wine region of France with a true expert and fabulous instructor.
By nature and nurture the Loire is an aristocratic place. Even the wines manifest this inherent equilibrium of structure and precision and grace. Over 300 castles and/or châteaux, plus gardens, vineyards and broad expanses of cropland, flank the Loire River. It is because of this exquisitely pastoral yet cultured landscape that the region is known as “Le Jardin de la France”, France’s Garden. It is the home of some of the most delicious, delectable, enjoyable French wines.
- Enjoy guidance and instruction from Loire Valley native and Master Sommelier Pascaline Lepeltier
- Travel to most of the region’s wine appellations including: Sancerre, Vouvray, Chinon, Saumur-Champigny, Savennières
- Taste rare and distinctive wines including racy whites, refreshing rosés, reds that favor fruit over force, and sumptuous sweet and sparkling wines made from the versatile grape Chenin Blanc
- Visit Sancerre, the most famous ambassador for crafting Sauvignon Blanc in the world.
- Get access to some of the most prestigious and sought-after small wine producers
- Enjoy the gorgeous scenery of the Loire river, including world-famous castles and cathedrals
- Indulge in the renowned, authentic cuisine of the Loire…cave-cultivated button mushrooms, goat cheeses, black truffles, saffron, artichokes and all manner of tree and berry fruits.
Your Tour Instructor & Guide: Pascaline Lepeltier MS, MOF, 2018 Best French Sommelier
- Loire Valley native
- Master Sommelier and Meilleur Ouvrier de France (MOF) Sommelier Lauréate
- Highly qualified and experienced speaker and presenter
- Managing Partner, Racines NY and Former Beverage Director, Rouge Tomate, New York, NY
There aren’t enough superlatives to describe Pascaline Lepeltier. She is a true force of nature! I have never met anyone with her combination of a near-photographic memory for wines and wine knowledge, world-class wine and food pairing ability, deep personal relationships with the vignerons we visited, passion for the wine regions we visited, generosity in answering all our questions, humility, and a wonderful sense of humor. Pascaline is an absolute treasure and this world is a better place because of her."
Pascaline is terrific. I have never met ANYONE who knows more about every single aspect of wine that does she! She answers all questions thoroughly and without any hint of condescension. I loved spending the week with her!"
For me personally, the trip was incroyable! The selection and variety of estates, the deep dive into terroir, the wines we had the opportunity to taste, the education we received was all first rate.[...] It is impossible not to love Pascaline. She has such boundless enthusiasm and energy. She has such incredible knowledge of this region that she is eager to share."
Your Tour Manager: Mary Kirk
Assisting the instructor and making sure logistics run smoothly and that your needs are answered will be Mary Kirk, Sommelière-Conseil. Mary has been leading wine tours in the Loire Valley for over 10 years, and teaches wine in the Paris area. A graduate of France’s Université du Vin, she has earned the prestigious degree of Sommelier-conseil.
Sunday, October 11
- Participants arrive independently to the beautiful medieval town of Amboise* and check in to the lovely 4-star Hotel Le Choiseul.
- Enjoy an evening on your own to discover the beautiful city of Amboise and its great restaurants with our suggestions (including the hotel’s fine restaurant, Le 36).
*It’s easy to get from Paris to Amboise. You can take a direct high-speed TGV train from Paris Gare d’Austerlitz station to Gare d’Amboise station; trains with one connection (TGV and then local TER train) are available at Paris Gare Montparnasse.
Monday, October 12 | Saumur | B, L, D
- Meet your instructor, Master Sommelier and Loire native Pascaline Lepeltier, and travel to the Montlouis appellation.
- Visit one of the star producers of the appellation, Francois Chidaine.
- Go on to Vouvray and enjoy a stellar visit with the top estate of the appellation, Domaine Huet.
- Have lunch in a great wine bistro in the center of Tours and then travel on to Saumur.
- As you travel, Pascaline will give you an overview of this subregion and its wines.
- Enjoy the afternoon at the Paulée de Saumur, a great opportunity to meet and taste with a number of different producers from this region.
- Travel back to your hotel and enjoy a delicious welcome dinner paired with great Loire wines at the hotel’s great Restaurant Le 36.
Tuesday, October 13 | Sancerre | B, L, D
- Travel to the Centre subregion. As you travel, Pascaline will give you an overview of this subregion and its wines.
- Go to the emblematic appellation of this area, Sancerre, and enjoy a visit at fine estate Domaine Gerard Boulay in the village of Chavignol.
- Enjoy lunch at gourmet restaurant Memento in the nearby village of Bue.
- Go on to the biodynamic producer like Domaine Vincent Gaudry.
- Travel to the Cour Cheverny appellation and round out the afternoon with a visit at Domaine Villemade
- Travel back to the hotel for another fine gastronomic dinner at Restaurant Le 36.
Wednesday, October 14 | Chinon, Bourgueil, Saumur-Champigny | B, L
- Today’s visits concentrate on Cabernet Franc-based wines, beginning in Chinon with a great winemaker like Bernard Baudry, Olga Raffault or Charles Joguet.
- You’ll taste a variety of full-bodied, long-ageing Bourgueil wines at a top producer like Domaine Breton or Domaine de la Chevalerie.
- Enjoy lunch at great wine-bar La Cabane à Vin in Chinon.
- Visit a highly-rated estate in Saumur-Champigny, like Domaine Guiberteau or Château de Fosse-Sèche.
- Check in to the historic 4-star Hotel d’Anjou in Angers and enjoy dinner on your own with our restaurant suggestions.
Thursday, October 15 | Anjou, Côteaux de Layon, Bonnezeaux, Savennières | B, L, D
- In the morning, discover the minerality and ageability of great Savennières wines at two of its best producers, like La Coulée de Serrant, Domaine aux Moines or Domaine du Closel.
- Enjoy a gourmet bistrot lunch at Le Chenin in the village of Savennières.
- In the afternoon, discover the fine red, white and rosé wines of AOP Anjou and Anjou Villages, as well as the vins moelleux et liquoreux of AOPs like Côteaux de Layon, Bonnezeaux, Quart de Chaume or Côteaux d’Aubance, at two highly-rated producers like Domaine Patrick Baudouin, Domaine les Grandes Vignes, Domaine Mosse or Domaine Delesvaux.
- Your farewell dinner is at the lovely Michelin 1-star restaurant Une Ile in Angers, paired with great Loire wines.
Friday, October 16 | Muscadet | B, L
- Travel west to the Atlantic coast and visit two fine producers in the maritime vineyards of Muscadet like Domaine de l’Écu, Domaine de la Pepière or Domaine de la Louvetrie.
- Lunch is at gourmet restaurant Auberge La Gallotière.
- Your study trip ends after lunch with a group transfer to the Gare SNCF in Nantes.
- You may wish to extend your stay to visit Nantes, a beautiful city with many cultural sites of interest.
Legend for meals included in your tour: B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner
* Itinerary subject to change: wineries indicated above are those visited during the 2019 Loire Study Trip and are noted here as examples only. The Instructor will be choosing other top wineries in the region for inclusion in the Itinerary. Wine Scholar Guild will announce confirmed wineries in 2020 as they are confirmed. The wineries visited during this Study Trip will all be of the highest quality.
- Instruction throughout by Master Sommelier and Loire native Pascaline Lepeltier
- The services of a Tour Manager throughout, to provide great customer service and logistics support.
- The complete Wine Scholar Guild Loire Master Level online course, including the written manual, online webinars and online exam
- Deluxe, air-conditioned motor coach transportation throughout, with bottled water on-board
- 3 nights at 4-star Hotel Le Choiseul in Amboise, double occupancy
- 2 nights at 4-star Hotel D'Anjou in Angers, double occupancy
- 3 gastronomic dinners with fine wines, including one at a Michelin 1-star restaurant
- 5 gourmet lunches with fine wines
- 5 delicious buffet breakfasts
- All professional-level tours and extensive tastings at top-quality wine producers
- All hotel and other taxes, and gratuities for included restaurants
Price per person, double occupancy: US$ 4,890.00
Enrolled Student Price per person, double occupancy: US $ 4,595.00
(Enrolled Student Price is for registrants already fully or partially enrolled in the Loire Master-Level program**)
Single Supplement: US$ 495.00
Deposit upon reservation: US$ 1000.00 per person, per trip
Get US$ 150 off each additional trip you take!***
NOTE: There are a limited number of twin rooms available. Please let us know if you’d like to share a twin room with another participant to avoid the single supplement and pay the double occupancy price instead.
**The Enrolled Study Price applies to those currently studying in the Loire Master-Level program or who have completed it. Full registration in the Loire Master-Level program means students who have previously ordered the Loire Master-Level study manual, exam registration and online study program.
***After you have reserved your first Study Trip in 2020, you will receive a Discount of US$150 for each additional Study Trip you take in the same calendar year. This Discount will be deducted from the final balance payment for each additional Study Trip. You must pay in full for the first Study Trip you reserve to be eligible to receive the Discount for additional Study Trips.
Space is limited to 18 participants, so reserve your space today!
Enjoy memorable meals at Gastronomic restaurants and stays in 4-star hotels
Loire Wine Quiz: Test Yourself!
The following quiz is part of the WSG's French Wine Scholar study & certification program. Enjoy!
ESTATES VISITED ON PREVIOUS LOIRE WINE TOURS
We thank the following estates and individuals for having welcomed us and our students on past study wine tours to Loire Valley:
Domaine Vincent Gaudry in Sury-en-Vaux
Domaine de la Grange Tiphaine in Amboise
Domaine Vincent Careme in Vouvray
Domaine Huet in Vouvray
Bernard Baudry in Cravant-les-Côteaux
Domaine de la Chevalerie in Restigné
Domaine Guiberteau in Saint-Just-sur-Dive
La Coulée de Serrant in Savennières
Domaine aux Moines in Savennières
Domaine de Closel in Savennières
Domaine de la Louvetrie in La Haie-Fouassière
Domaine Vacheron in Sancerre
Domaine Vincent Pinard in Bue
Domaine Francois Chidaine in Montlouis-sur-Loire
Domaine Breton in Benais
Domaine des Roches Neuves in Varrains
Domaines les Grandes Vignes in Bellevigne-en-Layon
Mark Angeli in Bellevigne-en-Layon
Domaine de l'Écu in Le Landreau
Domaine de la Pépière in Maisdon-sur-Sèvre
All upcoming tours:
AlsaceJun 07 - Jun 12, 2020
ChampagneJun 23 - Jun 27, 2020
PiedmontSep 13 - Sep 18, 2020
BordeauxOct 04 - Oct 09, 2020
LoireOct 11 - Oct 16, 2020
SicilyOct 11 - Oct 16, 2020
RhôneOct 18 - Oct 23, 2020
BourgogneOct 25 - Oct 30, 2020
Languedoc-RoussillonOct 25 - Oct 30, 2020