This year, for the first time in about 400 years, there will be a red wine from Brittany. As the French news portal 20minutes reports, the winegrowers' association "Vignerons de Garo" in Saint-Suliac cultivates 400 vines of the Rondo variety. The grape, which is grown in Germany, is particularly resistant and produces wines with characteristics similar to those of Merlot. The Breton vines were planted four years ago and should produce their first vinifiable harvest in autumn.
Saint-Suliac is located about ten kilometres south of Saint-Malo on the right bank of the Rance. There was already viticulture on the banks of the river in Roman times and it was first documented in writing in the middle of the 9th century. However, the last vines disappeared in the 17th century to make room for apple trees, whose fruits were then processed into cider.
In 2003, the "Vignerons de Garo" were created and in 2004 they planted the first 700 vines of Chenin Blanc. Since 2006 the winegrowers have been producing the dry white wine "Clos Garo", of which 300 bottles were filled last year. The first red wine harvest in a few months is eagerly awaited: "There is a certain amount of excitement, it cannot be ignored", 20minutes quotes Jean-Pierre Vivier, president of the association. "But we will be proud only if the result is satisfactory. We must learn. Red wine is a discovery for us."