Loire Valley Tasting at Wine Watch Wine Bar

Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - 07:30 PM

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A man dies too young if he leaves any wine in his cellar. (Simon had only two magnums of claret in his cellar when he died.)

André Simon

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One of the unsung hero's of distinctive and unique in the wine world is the Loire Valley, France.  The Loire valley also referred to as "la Touraine" is situated smack dab in the middle of France and is quintessentially French.  This region in the past was favored by kings and the economically elite who chose to settle in the region in elaborate and elegant castles, chateaux, cathedrals, etc....

The capital, Tours, benefitted for years from the constant influx of pilgrims, merchants and the presence of the kings, their court and their extravagant expenditures.  The financially elite and the wine producers benefitted from the good Taste of the bourgeois and the wealthy financiers, the historic silk trade and the high quality of the wines are what drive today’s tourism.

For generations it has been documented as far back as 1661 Carme Marteau described the Loire valley as "one of the most beautiful, incredible, delightful and wonderful, even the most fertile province of this opulent kingdom if not this entire world ". The dictionary of gastronomy quotes " the cuisine of Touraine is probably of the most exquisite in France : healthy, simple and admirably prepared".

The Loire valley is a fertile garden, full of vineyards and orchards, rivers and beautiful stones, whether it be those of its famous chateaux or its intimate villages. The wines from this part of France are some of the most distinct, unique and above all some of the best values in the world of French wines.

Come out and experience some of the best that the Loire Valley has to offer- this is the tasting to kick off the summer!! Chef Toni Lampasone will be making a special menu to compliment the 30+ wines that will be on the table this evening.  The fee for this tasting is $45 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com.

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Loire Valley Wine Tasting at Wine Watch Wine Bar
Wednesday, June 28
7:30pm

RNDC

Cremant de Loire

Bouvet Cremant
Price: $18.75    Sale $16.50   

Bouvet-Ladubay sources its fruit from more than 100 plots in the Loire Valley, obtaining the best quality at every harvest through its long-standing relationships with winegrowers. The limestone subsoil is ideal for the cultivation of Chenin Blanc, and the mild climate coupled with the excellent drainage of the clay creates the natural acidity needed to produce a balanced sparkling white wine. All grapes are hand harvested and spend a minimum of 12 months on the lees. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel, then the finest wines from each lot are blended and the cuvée is bottled for the second fermentation, following the traditional method.

Bouvet Rose      
Price: $16.50    Sale $14.52

Redde Les Tullieres Sancerre
Price: $30.00    Sale $26.40

Quintessence Pouilly Fume  
Price: $22.50    Sale $19.80

M Picard Vouvray    
Price: $17    Sale $14.96

Southern/Artisan

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La Craie Vouvray
Price: $19.50    Sale $17.16
Vouvray “La Craie” is a custom cuvée of this amazing varietal, taken from some of the best parcels in the appellation.  It is assembled in Vouvray, sees no wood, is bottled fresh and young, and is designed to offer the striking crispness that one expects from the Loire but with a very small amount of residual sugar for an added layer of complexity. 

“La Craie” (or “chalk” in French) refers to the abundance of white, soft rock in the area known locally as “Tuffeau.”  High on the hills of Vouvray, one can tour the homes of locals who live in caves dug from this soft chalk.   It is found in the vineyards as well, ensuring good drainage down the slopes and keeping the soil warm at night to help keep the roots from experiencing drastic temperature changes.

La Fruitiere “Gneiss”  Muscadet 
Price: $15.75    Sale $13.86

Roger Neveu “Bouffants” Sancerre 
Price: $25.50    Sale $22.44

Plentitude Cour Cheverny 2014
Price: $30.75    Sale $27.06

Domaine Montcy “Louis de la Saussaye”  Cheverny   ( Pinot, Malbec, Gamay)
Price: $30.00    Sale $26.40

Phillipe Alliet  Chinon
Price: $20.25    Sale $17.82

La Varenne Chinon “Pierres Blanches” 2010 
Price: $36.00    Sale $31.68

Alphonse Mellot Petit Moussiere Rouge (pinot noir)  2013
Price: $42.00    Sale $36.96

Florida Wine Company

Domaine Trotereau

2015 Trotereau Quincy VV
Price: $25.50    Sale $22.44
Pierre Ragon of Domaine Trotereau is as much an icon of the small appellation of Quincy in the Loire Valley as the appellation itself is a historical icon for the whole of France. Quincy was the second recognized appellation in France in 1936, second only to Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Grapes had long been planted here, however, with Sauvignon Blanc having been introduced by Cistercian monks in the 12th century. Southwest of Sancerre, on the banks of a tributary of the Loire River, the Cher, the relatively small appellation of 200 hectares is located between the villages of Vierzon and Bourges. The sandy, silex-ridden topsoil with an undercurrent of pink limestone is truly unique, unlike any other Sauvignon Blanc appellation in the world, and gives a very particular wine. Sauvignon is able to ripen more fully here while retaining a very interesting aromatic profile, and the wines are capable of aging quite gracefully.

As recently as fifty years ago, the wines of Quincy were more recognized in France for their quality than Sancerre or Pouilly-Fumé, and commanded a higher price. Today the appellation has largely faded from recognition, and cave cooperatives have bought up a lot of the land at pennies on the dollar. Most at Quincy try to make bracing, nervy Sauvignons that recall the typical style that can be produced anywhere, and there are precious few willing or able to take the risks necessary to produce the type of wine that made Quincy famous and that only their terroir can produce. Ever since Denis Jaumier retired after bottling the 2005 vintage, we’ve been looking for a worthy successor. Pierre Ragon’s vines happen to sit right next to some of Jaumier’s old parcels, and Pierre hasn’t rushed to replant with higher yielding clones since he took over the reins in 1973 at this storied family domaine founded in 1804. He is now blessed with vines over 100 years old that are still producing exceptional fruit. With pride and excitement, we once again bring you the real deal from Quincy.

2014 Lucien Crochet Sancerre Blanc
Price: $35.00    Sale $30.80

2014 Philippe Gilbert Menetou Salon Blanc
Price: $29.75    Sale $26.18

2014 Chteau d'Epire Savennieres Cuvee Speciale
Price: $28.50    Sale $25.08

2014 Catherine & Pierre Breton Bourgueil "Franc de Pied"
Price: $33.75    Sale $29.70

2012 Catherine & Pierre Breton Bourgueil "Les Perrieres"
Price: $47.50    Sale $41.80

 

Breakthru
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Herve Villemade Cheverny Rose
Price: $22.50    Sale $19.80
This delightful rosé wine is made from a blend of equal parts of Pinot Noir and Gamay which are crushed and fermented and matured in tanks prior to bottling.

It is a blended wine as wines with the Cheverney appellation on the label, cannot be single varietals.

It is a fresh, lively wine that is perfect for drinking at any time of the year. These two grape varieties marry so well in the bottle.

Serol Petillant Rose Trubullent
Price: $23.25    Sale $20.46

Pichot Vouvray
Price: $17.00    Sale $14.96

Langlois Chateau Sancerre
Price: $24.75    Sale $21.78

Gaudrey Pouilly Fume
Price: $28.25    Sale $24.86

Baudry Chinon Granges
Price: $20.75    Sale $18.26

 

Stacole
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Domaine du Salvard Cheverny Blanc 2016                      
Price: $16.25    Sale $14.30    Case $166

Domaine du Salvard has been a working domaine since 1898, through five hardworking generations of the Delaille family. Today, all forty-two hectares of vineyards are farmed by the capable brother team of Emmanuel and Thierry Delaille, with help from their father Gilbert. To our delight, they have carried on the traditions established by their ancestors, producing a true, classic Cheverny that is both simple and elegant. The Delaille brothers have focused their attention on growing fresh, lively Sauvignon Blanc, deeply rooted in the sand, clay, and limestone plains of northeastern Touraine. Pinot Noir, Gamay, and Cot constitute their red grape holdings, creating youthful reds with great aromatics. Gilbert and his sons have also made their own contributions to the heritage of the domaine, including the introduction of sustainable farming practices into the vineyards, as well as temperature-controlled vinification equipment to the winery.

Until finally achieving A.O.C. status in 1993, Cheverny was widely regarded as one of the best V.D.Q.S. (Vin de Qualité Superieur) of the Loire. However, some argue that this A.O.C.-in-waiting designation was a political maneuver by the I.N.A.O. to keep Cheverny’s delicious, sprightly Sauvignon Blanc out of competition with the other more famous appellations of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. Kermit was the first to discover the charm and value of Cheverny back in 1978 when he imported the Domaine Jean Gueritte. He took on the Cheverny of Domaine du Salvard in 1992, a year before the status change in the appellation. We continue to tout the domaine’s wine as one of the greatest values for Sauvignon Blanc perfection.

Henri Bourgeois “Petit” Sauvignon Blanc VdP Loire 2015
Price: $13.25    Sale $11.66    Case $136

Le Roi des Pierres Sancerre Blanc 2016                      
Price: $31.50    Sale $27.72    Case $322

Hubert Brochard “Non-Filtre” Sancerre 2015                      
Price: $25.50    Sale $22.44    Case $261

Charles Bove Vouvray 2015                                             
Price: $16.25    Sale $14.30    Case $166

J.M Raffault Chinon Rose 2016                                     
Price: $13.50    Sale $11.88    Case $138

Domaine Grosbois “Gabare” Chinon 2015                   
Price: $32.00    Sale $28.16    Case $327

Henri Bourgeois “Les Baronnes” Sancerre Rouge 2013   
Price: $23.75    Sale $20.90    Case $243

Hippolyte-Reverdy Sancerre Rouge 2014                      
Price: $28.25    Sale $24.86    Case $289

Menu

Macadamia Nut Crusted Goat Cheese with lemon mango jam
Lime Citrus Shrimp and Scallop Ceviche Shooters
Tuna Slider with Miso Ginger Mayo and Sesame Slaw
Pepper Seared Sirloin Gorgonzola Cheese Arugula roll
Vietnamese Green Onion Pancakes with Lemongrass pulled Pork with Hoisin Syrup

 

Come out and experience some of the best that the Loire Valley has to offer- this is the tasting to kick off the summer!! Chef Toni Lampasone will be making a special menu to compliment the 30+ wines that will be on the table this evening.  The fee for this tasting is $45 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com.
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A bit about Sancerre:

The area around Sancerre was likely first cultivated by the Romans, around the 1st century AD.   The foundations of two different Roman bridges across the Loire can be observed at the river village of St-Satur, the port for Sancerre, marking its ancient position along a major Roman trade route.

The chalk hill outcrop was not only a distinctive landmark known in Roman times but it also fit the profile of the type of areas that was usually the first to be cultivated because it was near an important town and had easy access to a navigatable river.  And of course most importantly, the steep sloping hills could provide the grapes with enough direct sunlight and heat to fully ripen while also allowing cold air to flow off the slope and collect in the valleys below.

The region was historically linked to the Dukes of Burgundy, which may explain the introduction of Pinot noir vines to this area. Sancerre's position as an administrative center, and the large nearby cities of Orléans and Bourges (which was the capital of the powerful Duke of Berry) ensured healthy local markets for the Pinot Noir and Gamay wines traditional in the area.

Demand for Sancerre increased even more with the coming of the railway from Paris.  In the late 19th century the phylloxera epidemic devastated the Sancerre region wiping out most of the region's vines. Although some Pinot noir vines remained almost all of the Gamay was lost.  These old Gamay vineyards were replanted with Sauvignon Blanc, mostly because it grafted better onto the American rootstocks. 

After the Second World War, Sancerre's wines gained quite a reputation in the Paris bistro scene.  Sancerre became known as an easy drinking white wine, the equivalent to Beaujolais.  In the late 1970s and 1980s, a wave of new quality consciousness producers aided the reputation of Sancerre as an elegant and food friendly white wine and thus Sancerre has became very popular with the world's top restaurants.

Most vineyards around the town of Sancerre are on south facing slopes at altitudes between 655-1,310 feet (200–400 meters). The soils can be roughly classified into three categories.

1)  The far western reaches heading towards Menetou-Salon have "white" soils with clay and limestone. Around the village of Chavignol (considered a cru of Sancerre), the soil also includes some Kimmeridgian marl. Wines from these western reaches tend to have more body and power in their flavor profile.

2)  Heading closer to the city of Sancerre the soil picks up more gravel mixed with the limestone and tends to produce more light bodied wines with delicate perfumes.

3)  The third type of soil is found around the city of Sancerre itself which includes deposits of flint (aka silex) which adds a distinctive mineral component to the wines. These Sancerre tend to be more heavily perfumed and are considered to have the longest aging potential of all the Sancerres.

 

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