mOVE OVER CHARDONNAY! SAUVIGNON BLANC!
As a white wine, Chenin Blanc has a wide range of flavors. Part of the reason for this has a lot to do with the winemaking style. Dry: When the grapes are fermented dry and kept fresh, they produce a very lean, minerally style Chenin Blanc that offers up flavors of tart pear, quince, ginger, and chamomile. Our favorite growing regions for this delightful white are the Loire Valley in France and South Africa.
$20 Chateau du Petit Thouars Chinon ‘17, Loire Valley, France
-Petit Thouars’s white wine comes from a 0.75-hectare plot of Chenin Blanc planted in 2010 within the confines of an ancient wall immediately behind the chateau itself (hence the name of the cuvée). Situated in the southwest limit of the appellation close to Saumur-Champigny, the soils here are more suited to the production of white wine than vineyards further northeast. Fermentations start naturally, sometimes in stainless steel tanks and sometimes in used 225-liter barrels. The wine is aged on the lees for roughly 6 months, and racked at least a few times before bottling, typically in the spring of the following year. It is always quite dry, with a generous and broad palate that nicely counters the piercing acidity of the Chenin.
$19 Chateau Soucherie Anjou Blanc '16, Loire Valley, France
$18 Alexandre Monmosseau Vouvray Sec "Ammonite" '16, Loire Valley, France
$75 Domaine Huet "Moelleux Premiere Trie Le Mont" Vouvray '17, Loire Valley, France
$28 Chateau d'Epire Savennieres '16, Loire Valley, France
$20 Chateau du Petit Thouars “Le Clos” Chinon ‘17, Loire Valley, France
$14 Mulderbosch '16, Stellenbosch, South Africa
$11 Riebeek Cellars '16, Swartland, South Africa
$17 Storm Point '17, Western Cape, South Africa
$18 Raats '17 "unwooded" Stellenbosch, South Africa
$17 Jelu '17 Zonda Valley, Argentina