Pouilly-Fume, along with Sancerre, comes from the Upper Loire Valley, which is actually the most southern and easterly sector. This region is dominated by Sauvignon Blanc and is thought of as the ancestral home for classic, varietal expressions of the grape, while Pinot Noir is used for the more limited production of reds and rose.

Pouilly-Fume is produced around the town of Pouilly-sur-Loire on the opposite bank of the Loire River from Sancerre. The vineyards of Pouilly are marked by a type of flint known as "silex" that is interspersed with limestone. This imparts a sharp, minerally quality to the wines.

Pouilly only produces white wines, while Sancerre also produces red and rose from Pinot Noir. In general terms Pouilly-Fume tends to be a bit fuller and richer in texture than Sancerre and Sancerre has a sharper, more exuberantly varietal edge. Much depends on producer and while classically unoaked, some produce luxury cuvees that have been oak aged. Nonetheless, Sancerre and Pouilly Fume are among the world's best sources for Sauvignon Blanc and both can provide great value. (Wine/Appellations)