An incredible wine festival, every June in Tours, in the heart of the French Loire Valley
After its cancellation in 2020 due to the coronavirus crisis, the Vitiloire wine festival will be back in 2021 (fingers crossed). And again, it will be the usual success.
Why is this wine festival so successful? Because Vitiloire is much more than a simple wine festival. You’re not stuck in one of those cramped and boring exhibition centers. Vitiloire celebrates wines in the open air, in the city centre of Tours, the capital city of the Loire Valley (Touraine in French).
And there is always an incredibly friendly atmosphere, created by hundreds of enthusiastic wine amateurs. In short, sheer pleasure and conviviality.
Let’s move to the practicalities of the Vitiloire wine festival. For an entrance fee of 5 euros you are given a tasting glass to keep for the day (or to bring back as a souvenir).
Ready, steady, go !
Over 150 winegrowers await us wine lovers in their cute wooden sheds. All eager to share their wine stories and winemaking know how.
Vitiloire offers the full spectrum of the 70 local wine appellations, among which : Muscadet, Pouilly Fumé, Anjou, Menetou Salon, Coteaux du Layon, Bourgueil, Chinon, Sancerre,… (well, you get it, it’s a long long list…).
And what is also marvellous with Loire valley wines is that they come in all colours and types : red, white, rosé, sparkling, lightly or richly sweet. Some wineries even produce the full set !
The 5 reasons you will love Vitiloire wine festival in France
Reason #1: a great atmosphere (on top of great wines)
Tourists on the prowl, experienced wine amateurs, families with children (yep, really), groups of friends : Vitiloire is an enjoyable experience for all.
Reason #2: Buy wine at property prices
The privilege of tasting before buying … at the same price as at the winery. Several times I have told winegrowers that their wine wasn’t expensive enough ! (you’ll find great stuff starting at 5 euros a bottle)
Reason 3: Passionate talkative winemakers
For me, that’s really what makes this event so special. The typical Loire valley winemaker is a pleasant person, always happy to talk about his wines, with patience and passion. True professionals will even share a glass with you !
Reason 4: The location
Vitiloire takes place in the city center of Tours, nearby the SNCF train station, only 1 hour from Paris Montparnasse with the high speed train (TGV).
Reason 5: The weather
Sun, 99% guaranteed. Well, maybe not such high odds. But in June, the weather is usually at its best in the region. The perfect conditions for a picnic on the nice lawns of the “Jardins de la Préfecture”. If you forget your snacks, don’t panic, you can purchase great local food on site.
5 tips for making the most out of the wine festival in Tours
To make the most out of Vitiloire wine festival in 2021, a few practical tips :
- Protect from the sun. Don’t forget the sunscreen, cap or any other headgear. The wine may strike you on the head. But the sun is a more formidable foe.
- Spit it out. Yes I know, it’s hard, especially when it’s good. But “slow and steady wins the race”.
- Anticipate. Prepare your visit, download the list of winemakers or … use our list at the end of this post. Personally, I usually select 4 to 5 must-see winegrowers beforehand and I start my tour with them.
- Do it your way. Sprinter, marathon runner, epicurean, enthusiast beginner, socialite, … Follow your flow !
- Saturday night fever. The end of the day on Saturday is always a good moment to enjoy a serious apéritif stroll before moving on to one of these nice little restaurants in the rue Colbert or at a terrace in the Place Plumereau.