On the Road with the Grape Guy

On the Road with the Grape Guy is a on-going feature that follows me from event to event ... I post my thoughts, feelings and reviews of what happened and what I tasted ... basically it is here that I review the events I attend and the things that thrilled me.

Gold Medal Wines Tasting (Loire Valley)

30 Sep 2022

(April 27, 2022) ... This was titled "Free-Pour Tasting of Medal-Winning Wines From The Loire Valley Wine Competition"; it was the first mass tasting of the event and it was hard to follow in any of the paperwork given (thankfully the only tasting during the event that suffered from this problem). I tasted lots of wine, but very few I could find in the handout. Therefore, these are the wines I was able to locate and could score with some knowledge of what I was tasting; here I used a new simplified rating system: Good / Good+ (which I continued to use for much of the event going forward).

Whites Wines ...

Orchidées Maison De Vins 2020 Domaine Des Hardières "Les Petits Gars" - Anjou ... Good+
Joel Delaunay Sarl 2021 Thierry Delaunay - Touraine ... Good+
Domaine De La Renaudie 2021 Domaine De La Renaudie - Touraine ... Good+
Scea De La Ragotiere 2021 Domaine Petit Chateau (Chardonnay) - Val De Loire Chardonnay … Good
Earl Boumard Jacky 2021 Sauvignon Blanc - Val De Loire ... Good
Earl Le Moulin De La Touche 2021 Le Moulin De La Touche (Sauvignon Gris) - Val De Loire ... Good
Patrick Baudouin 2019 Savennieres Bellevue - Savennieres ... Good
La Seigneurie 2020 Les Pentes - Saumur ... Good

Sparklng Wines ...

Domaine Delaunay 2019 Domaine Delaunay (Blanc) - Cremant De Loire Brut ... Good
Scea Catherine Nolot NV Domaine De L'ete (Blanc) - Cremant De Loire Brut ... Good
Sas Bouvet-Ladubay NV Bouvet Excellence (Rose) - Cremant De Loire Brut ... Good
Sas Lacheteau NV Chateau De Montgueret (Blanc) - Saumur Mousseux Brut ... Good

Red Wines ...

Jean-Martin Dutour 2020 Domaine De La Perriere Vieilles Vignes - Chinon Rouge ... Good+
Earl Demois 2020 Domaine De La Grange Billard Vieille Vigne - Chinon Rouge ... Good
Wilfrid Rousse 2019 Les Puys - Chinon Rouge ... Good +
Orchidées Maison De Vins 2019 Domaine Des Hardières "Les Etendards" - Anjou-Villages ... Good
Scea Branchereau - Domaine Des Forges 2020 Les 3c - Anjou-Villages ... Good +
Domaine Dittière 2019 Clos De La Grouas - Anjou-Villages Brissac ... Good
Scea Michaud-Beaufort 2021 Gamay - Touraine ... Good


Masterclass on Crémant (Loire Valley)

29 Sep 2022

(April 29, 2022) ...

Gerhild Burkhard led this morning’s Masterclass about Crémant, because there is no better way to start a day than with six glasses of sparkling wine. Gerhild Burkhard

We will start here ...

There are 8 regions for Crémant in France:
Alsace / Bordeaux /  Bourgogne / Die / Jura / Limoux / Loire / Savoie
with 5000 producers and 12,736 hectares in production.

To be considered as Crémant the rules are as follows:

- Traditional method
- Hand harvested
- Minimum 9 months of aging on lees
- Lees must be disgorged
- Maximum sugar level 50g/L
- After 12 months the wine can go to market

Crémant de Loire is centered mainly in Angers-Saumur-Tours with approximately 2600 hectares. The AOP was created in 1975 and the main varieties used are Chenin and Cab Franc with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Grolleau Noir et Gris plus others are also allowed, but can make up no more than 30%.
60% is exported (23.3 million bottles) of which 65% goes to Germany, 8% to the USA and 7% to the UK.

The Wines … six were sampled, below are my top four

Domaine de las Clartiere 2019 Cremant de Loire
(50% Chardonnay / 30% Chenin / 20% Grolleau Gris)
18 months on lees has developed a creamy palate with nice acidity, plenty of crisp apple, mineral, plus lemon/citrus notes.  (*** ½)

Domaine Baumard NV Carte Turquoise Blanc
(30% Chenin / 40% Cab Franc / 30% Chardonnay)
Leesy/brioche character right off the hop which leads into a creamy mouthfeel, but backed by citrus zest and green apple bite.  (*** ½+)

Domaine Olivier 2017 Cremant de Loire
(70% Chenin / 30% Chardonnay)    
Crispiness based on that punch of acidity from green apple, there’s also a lovely brioche note, pretty floral and lingering citrus. More of this, please.  (****)

Domaine de Nerleux 2018 Art des Loups
(55% Chardonnay / 45% Chenin)
65% of this wine sees new barrel giving it a richness which comes out as honey and lemon zest with good acidity and even a little something spicy.  (*** ½+)


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