Saturday, September 17, 2005

2002 Savennières Cuvée des Genêts Domaine Laureau

This is a Savennières that I drank recently. I really liked it and also found it reasonably priced.

Savennières is a small but distinctive appellation of the Loire Valley. The wines, made from Chenin Blanc, are highly concentrated and age-worthy. Although sweet in the past, they are mostly made dry now.

Chenin Blanc is a widely under-estimated variety with, according to Jancis Robinson, only 9,000 ha planted in its birthplace the Loire, 22,000 in South Africa, 500 in Australia, 200 in New Zealand, 3,600 in Argentina and 8,000 ha in the United States.

Damien Laureau is a promising young winemaker who has taken over 6 hectares of vines from his uncle who was heading into retirement. He recently enjoyed some well deserved recognition with his exceptional Savennières cuvées from the 2002 vintage. The Cuvée des Genêts is made from its youngest vines (20-40 year old), growing on schist and quartz. It is a 100% Chenin Blanc wine, 90% aged in tank and 10% in wood for 18 months.

A Savennières can be austere in its youth but the 2002 Savennières Cuvée des Genêts Domaine Laureau is ready to drink now. The color is bright golden. The nose is mineral and lively. On the palate, it offers a crisp and dense mouthfeel with green apple aromas, followed by a fresh honeyed finish. This delicious wine works wonderfully with Greek taramosalata.

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1 comment:

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