Hurray #Vouvray Part 2 with @LoireValleyWine

Hello Friends,

Coming off of an enjoyable and informative Vouvray Twitter event with the good folks at @TasteLive and @LoireValleyWine several weeks ago, I was eager to participate in Hurray #Vouvray Part 2. The first event, which featured a nice selection of still [Vouvray] wines ranging from crisp and dry to well-balanced and slightly sweet, expressed the many pleasant faces of the Chenin Blanc grape variety.

 Hurray #Vouvray Part 2 Tasting Line-up

Chenin Blanc is a versatile white wine grape variety known for its high acid levels, food-friendly nature, and good aging potential. It has been grown in Vouvray almost exclusively since the 4th century. So, the marriage between grape cultivar [Chenin Blanc] and Vouvray’s geographical landscape and climate is a long-lived and happy one. By law, Vouvray must be made of 100% Chenin Blanc.   

Sparkling Vouvray makes for a nice aperitif 

While South Africa, California, Washington State, and others do a respectable job growing and producing Chenin Blanc, it’s the [liquid] gem of Vouvray and is where the variety, in my opinion, reaches its highest peaks of expression. Its often times vibrant flavors can range from tree fruits (apple, pear) to stone fruits (apricot, peach) which are heightened by additional nuanced complexities of mineral, honey, ginger, and floral notes. Touches of tropical fruit can be detected in riper examples and sometimes even hay and nutty undertones.

Huet 2011 Haut-Lieu Sec

If you’re looking to invite a French guest over for Thanksgiving dinner, I recommend inviting a bottle of Vouvray to the table. Well-made examples can be rather charming, delicious, reasonably priced (under $20) and a very good partner to turkey and all the fixings. In closing, see my notes on the five wines we tasted for Hurray #Vouvray Part 2 below (I’ve include pictures of some of the bottles). Also, be sure to visit the Loire Valley Wines’ website to learn more about Vouvray and some of the area’s other classic wine regions.

 Foreau (Clo des Naudins) 2009 Vouvray Demi-Sec

1) Huet 2011 Haut-Lieu Sec (SRP $28, biodynamic): Refreshing and well-balanced showing pleasing melon and pear aromas with touches of almond and hay and a refreshing [citrus] zesty acidity. Here is a nice quote I found about the producer. "For anyone who worships at the church of Chenin Blanc, this is Pinguet's swansong wine." ~ PJWine on Huet. Click here to find this wine.

2) Gautier Benoit 2010 Vouvray Argilex (SRP $16): Spiced pear, honey, white flower undertones and subtle mineral notes with middling acidity -- soft, slightly rounded texture, pleasant medium length finish. Click here to find this wine.

3) Foreau (Clo des Naudins) 2009 Vouvray Demi-Sec ($30): Pleasantly sweet selection offering honeyed apricot and melon aromas with a fairly rich texture and nice balancing acidity with appealing nuanced tropical flavors and a lip-smacking fruity finish. This is the perfect mate for spicy ethnic food in my opinion. Click here to find this wine.

 Francois Pinon 2005 Cuvee Botrytis

4) Vincent Careme 2010 Brut Cuvee (SRP $20): Bright and refreshing with vibrant lemon/citrus aromas/flavors and a faint mineral character with just a touch of yeast. This wine is fun, lively, and proof that sparkling wine isn't just for special occasions. It keeps the balance between sweetness and acidity, stays fresh on the palate, and is very food-friendly. I enjoyed a glass with sashimi. Click here to find this wine.

5) Francois Pinon 2005 Cuvee Botrytis (SRP $45): Not labeled as such, but this nobly sweet and delicious selection would likely fall under the Moëlleux sweetness level. It offers rich and inviting aromas of honey, floral perfume, dried stone fruit, and lush tropical notes. Good depth of flavor with a fuller-bodied mouth-feel whose sugars are balanced by fine supporting acidity. Nice after-dinner sipper that can be enjoyed as the dessert itself or try pairing it with blue veined cheese, foie-gras, cream based desserts or cheese cake. Click here to find this wine.

Vincent Careme 2010 Brut Cuvee

Tip: For you “Grape Hunters” … you likely won’t find Chenin Blanc on the label, so just seek out Vouvray [the region]. Chenin Blanc is all they really do! Cheers!

Click here to to visit Loire Valley Wines website and learn more about Vouvray.

Click here to visit TasteLive; a premiere online wine and beer tasting community.

Click here to review my post from Hurray #Vouvray Part 1.

Have a question about this post, friends? Feel free to leave a comment or send me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com, and as always, Happy Sipping! Stay tuned ...more to come. Disclosure: This wine was received as a media sample. Thoughts are my own. Happy Sipping, my friends!

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