2018 VDF ‘La Belle Egarée’
100% Chenin blanc, from a mix of young and old vines. This wine spent just over a year in barrels of various sizes. Zero SO2.
Woah, that smell… you can’t get this from anywhere else. So unique. It’s a golden elixir, extremely artisan. The aromas are so homely and pleasing. Lemon, fresh honeycomb, apple pie, salinity, limestone – but there’s more than that. There’s the underground caves that it was born in. You can only smell it in wines from the Loire. The opposite of a sanitised winery where everything is above ground and homogenised. What a pleasure to drink. You have borderline rich Chenin in an almost old school fashion, but then that clean and fresh acidity that gives it drive and direction – and liveliness. Feels like a young Xavier Caillard almost. Extremely mineral to smell once it gains some air. Fresh and saline to taste, with a mild texture that is laced with minerality. This is really, really good, and quite hedonistic. Aromatic, and very pleasing. Seriously, it smells so good. Dry to taste. Lightly textural, with sweet fruit. Lemon, blossoms, and an array of apples. With more time in the glass, the limestone influence becomes stronger, bringing salinity. Terrific quality. Quite a luxurious wine. Not sharp or edgy – very voluptuous – but at the same time fresh, lifted and energetic. The acidity ties it all together. So good to drink now, but I would definitely stash a few of these away for a great reward later on. Chenin like this is a force to be reckoned with!