Mark Angéliwas a chemistry student turned stonemason who embraced viticulture as a form of environmental protection. He bought the Ferme de la Sansonnière in 1990, with 7 hectares in Anjou, Coteaux-du-Layon and Bonnezeaux. After years of making sweeter style and celebrated Bonnezeaux wines, he decided to focus on making great dry and semi-dry wines from the plots. This was due to the fact that he wanted to focus on unwired head-trained vines, which is practically unheard of in cooler climates. This allows the gobelet to have more freedom and air, thus leading to purer grapes and less rot, without having to incorporate manipulative techniques during the production process.
Leading the natural wine movement with Nicolas Joly in the Loire Valley, Mark now works with his son Martial, and winemaker Bruno Ciofi, producing precise and complex minimal interventionist wines. Volcanic sulfur from Etna is used to reduce usage by almost half. They make a total of 6 different cuvees, with four being white wines.
La Lune is the benchmark wine made entirely of Chenin Blanc.; a version of La Lune aged in ‘Amphora,’ giving it a texture boost; Les Fouchards, which is their monopole site planted in the 1970s, and aged in barrels for 2 years before release; The top cuvee, Vieilles Vignes des Blanderies, comes from plantings from 1949, also aged in barrels for 2 years. Next up, they also make a semi-dry Rosé from Grolleau Gris, named Rosé d’un Jour. Lastly, the unicorn red wine, Les Gélinettes, made entirely from Grolleau Noir with only 900 bottles or so produced a year.