Chenin Blanc wines of the highest class, made by a jovial man regarded as a statesman of Montlouis. This appellation, just across the river from Vouvray, is enjoying a period of resurgence after living in its illustrious neighbour’s shadow for many years. Such classically poised expressions of the terroir as these make it easy to understand why. Rigorously hand-harvested and separated by trie, fermented long and cold with native yeasts, and minimally treated with sulphur, these are cool and expressive wines. Sadly, this will be our last vintage of this singular domaine, as Olivier has retired from the fray and sold to a neighbor. Enjoy them while you can.
If a wine can be judged simply by the beauty of its aroma, then this one would sweep the field. Fortunately, it offers much more besides. Above all, its synthesis of vivid, silex-inspired minerality with sheerly beautiful Chenin honey transports you to a realm of other-worldly beauty where all is cool, limpid and at ease.
It is a measure of Olivier’s human quality that he chose to give us this, his top dry cuvée of 2007, in preference to the one we bought in previous vintages, because he wanted to show California his best stuff. Those who follow the happenings of Montlouis know that it is an appellation in ferment. There are newcomers aplenty attempting to recreate the wheel. But our man quietly goes about his business, dependably producing the classics against which everything else can be measured. If you like Chenin Blanc rendered clean, aromatic, unencumbered with wood, free of malolactic fermentation, comfortable in its skin and built for the ages, please look no further. This wine is as close to textbook as can be imagined, and we offer it you at a price that is frankly a little embarrassing when you consider its sheer innate quality and capacity for aging.