Is that canon fire in Poitiers? No, it’s the sound of bottles being popped open! The well-named sommelier Antoine Sauvignon hasn’t finished leading the charge at his wine shop bathed in natural light and raw wines. Selected practically at random from the big birch wood shelves, here’s a sampling of the carefully chosen natural wines, including a few grand masters of the genre (Courtois, Guignier, Schueller) and lots of lovely discoveries: Solstice, a local red from Emmanuel Bienvenu, vinified in amphora (€15); Premier Né, an Angevin Chenin from Nicolas Arnou (€17), Les Gruches, a Loire Chenin blanc from Claire and Florent Bejon (€20). Before leaving, make sure to grab some Nardín Basque anchovies or Tarn charcuterie from Alain Grèzes. One final tip: on Thursdays and Fridays, the wine shop morphs into a foodie haven for guest chefs, not to mention the Parisianized residents of Poitiers who stick their noses in – like the butcher Nicolas Bailleul (Terroirs d’Avenir) or the chef Julie Caute (Dame Jane). // Thomas Jossin
The bullet-proof bottle: Aubépin, a 2015 Montlouis-sur-Loire from the Domaine Vallée Moray (€17).
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