Toast your love with Saint-Amour

Nowg Valentine Graphic
Several of the wine producers in Saint-Amour embrace the village’s name by including heart shapes on their bottle labels.

By Mary Malik

Did you splurge on a luxury wine for Valentine’s Day to share with your beloved? Or maybe you chose one of those bottles with a love-themed name to reflect your feelings for that special someone. Jim Sperk of the Northern Ohio Wine Guild says those wines come from Saint-Amour, a small village in the Beaujolais region of France.

“Saint-Amour is named after a Roman soldier who later became a Christian missionary,” Jim says. “There are ten ‘cru appellations,’ or groups of vineyards that produce the highest quality of wines in the region. Saint-Amour is one of those crus.”

Jim says that the village embraces its name with heart-shaped symbols on the streets and the town hall. Several of the wine producers include heart shapes on their bottle labels.

“These producers sell more than a quarter of their annual production for Valentine’s Day,” Jim says. “In order to meet the demand for their wine, often very young wine is offered for sale at only a few months old.”

From a wine standpoint, we often think that older is better. Jim says that with these Valentine’s Day wines, youth is not a bad thing, but you may want to wait if you’re looking for a true taste experience of the wines of this region.

“Although these wines are usually very young and fine for celebration, they are not representative of the best wines of the Saint-Amour region,” Jim says. “If you’d like to experience a Saint-Amour wine at its best, it’s recommended you seek a vintage bottle that’s two or three years old. You’ll experience aromas somewhat unusual for a red wine like peach, apricot and peony.”

Jim says the Saint-Amour wines are full-bodied yet light and voluptuous. Perfect for a celebration of love.

For information on the Northern Ohio Wine Guild, contact Jim Sperk at