Monday, October 01, 2007

Loire Wine Tasting at Charteris Wine Society

Another fine wine tasting at the Charteris Wine Society excellently chosen by Charles and co-presented by Jeremy. In fact, I would say, their best yet. A good wine tasting has a theme and structure, this had several:

  • Firstly of course the river. A tour upstream and then back down showing the river's wide range of grapes and styles.
  • Secondly the "dinner party" sequence: dry 'aperitif' white, full 'food' white, light red, full bodied red, sweet white (but no room for the sweet red).
  • Thirdly several wines were in pairs to allow a compare-and-contrast learning.
  • Fourthly all bar one readily available from the same merchant (The Wine Society) thus showing the Society to advantage.
The wines - grape variety:
  • Muscadet Sèvre-et-Maine, Le Clos du Château L'Oiselinière, 2002 (Chéreau-Carré) - muscadet
  • Savennières, L'Enclos, 2004 (Eric Morgat) - chenin blanc
  • Coteaux du Giennois, Domaine de Villargeau, 2006 (Marc Thibault) - sauvignon blanc
  • Pouilly-Fumé, Château de Tracy, 2004 - sauvignon blanc
  • Sancerre Rosé, Domaine Serge Laloue, 2006 - pinot noir
  • Côte Roannaise, Vieilles Vignes, 2006 (Sérol) - gamay
  • St Nicolas de Bourgueil, Les Rouillères, 2005 (Frédéric Mabileau) - cabernet franc
  • Chinon, Domain du Raifault, "Le Villy", Cuvee Prestige, 1995 - cabernet franc
  • Coteaux de la Loire, Moelleux, Vieille Sève, 2004 (Alain Boré) - chenin blanc
  • Vouvray, Clos du Bourg, Moelleux, 1989 (Huet) - chenin blanc

And what did I learn?

  • The Loire produces an extraordinary range of wines.
  • The Gamay grape used to be one of my favorites. Moulin a Vent was one of the wines that moved me into red. But now it has dropped off my radar as a wine of choice.
  • Rose wine I have always said goes well with Salad Nicoise and Seafood paella. Now I will add Sushi to the list (after I have given it a try). And this rose is a particularly girlie pink colour.
  • My tastes are predictable. Mary wrote on her list "Mark will like this" against the St Nicolas de Bourgueil. How right she was - jammy and full of fruit.
  • In the sweetie shoot-out the less obvious but better wine did win. The Coteaux de la Loire was sweet and enjoyable but the Vouvray, Clos du Bourg, Moelleux was a far subtler and more complex wine. Quality will out, in the end.


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