Loire Sauvignon Blanc focus for M&S range

Marks & Spencer has focused on Sauvignon Blanc from small sub-appellations of the Loire Valley in its summer line-up.

The retailer unveiled five additions from the Loire at its annual tasting. These include Quincy Sauvignon Blanc , Reuilly Château Gaillard Sauvignon Blanc , and Pierblancs, a vin de pays made from grapes brought in from selected growers .

Wine developer Chris Murphy said: "Classic regions of France are one of our strengths and the popularity of Sauvignon Blanc shows no sign of decline, so we decided to see what we can find outside of Sancerre and Pouilly."

M&S has joined forces with ­independent estate Domaine Jacky Marteau to launch an exclusive Sauvignon de Touraine . A new Pinot Noir Hubert Brochard from Sancerre is also in its Loire line-up.

Murphy added: "The excellent 2005, vintage which produced such rich, concentrated examples of our existing favourites, prompted us to look at adding more choice to the range."

The retailer has also entered into an exclusive partnership with Champagne house Ayala to develop and sell its Brut and Rosé Majeur Champagnes, partly in response to the rosé boom.

It has also rolled out its wine adviser programme to 50 top stores.