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MWG November 13th tasting: White gold

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Vouvray sec 2004, Domaine Lemaire-Fournier ($26.45, private import, 6 bottles/case)
100% Chenin Blanc. The now-defunct 30-hectare estate was located in Vernou-sur-Brenne, close to Vouvray. In 2004, the estate was in its third year of conversion to organic farming. The wines were made with native yeasts and abjuring enzymes, chaptalization, deacidification, fining, added nutrients, tartric stabilization and sulphur. The estate’s remaining stocks of wine are being liquidated, which explains the reasonable price. 13% ABV. Quebec agent: La QV/Insolite.
A whiff of nail polish remover quickly blows off, leaving an evolved, complex nose of honeysuckle, camomile, banana peel, chalk, pear, dried mushroom, caramel and, eventually, buckwheat honey. On first sip you wonder whether it isn’t heading into off-dry territory but, no, the wine is dry albeit rich. The vibrant acidity is smoothed and rounded by the extract. The layers of fruit are set against a backdrop of crunchy minerals and joined by salted caramel on the long finish. Impressed just about everyone around the table. Amazing QPR. (Buy again? Obviously.)

Cour-Cheverny 2007, François 1er, Vieilles Vignes, Domaine des Huards ($32.00, private import, 6 bottles/case)
This is the big brother of Huard’s “Romo” Cour-Cheverny that the MWG tasted in June. 100% Romorantin from organically and biodynamically farmed vines averaging 75 years old. Manually harvested. Two-thirds of the grapes are immediately pressed, one-third are macerated on the skins for 15 hours before pressing. Fermented with indigenous yeasts at between 18 and 20°C. Matured on the lees for five months. Cold-stabilized before bottling in the September following the harvest. 12% ABV. Quebec agent: La QV/Insolite.
Intriguing nose of Jerusalem artichoke, wax, white flowers, limestone, dried lemon peel, faint honey. Round yet lively in the mouth. The fruit is understated but lacy-textured and multifaceted, buoyed and freshened by Romorantin’s nervous acidity and infused with chalky minerals that last well into the impressively long finish. A delectable, elegant, complete wine deserving of a fine seafood dish (think langoustines). (Buy again? Oh, yes.)

(Flight: 2/9)

Written by carswell

November 24, 2014 at 15:43

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