Domaine Francois Cotat, Les Culs de Beaujeu, AOC/AOP Sancerre, Chavignol, Cher, France, 2011
Chavignol has the steepest limestone slopes of the Sancerre appellation. Francois Cotat wines are produced from 3ha of vines, with late picking as a rule. Consequently in some years, alcohol or residual sugar are at levels outside AOC/AOP regs, so wines are declassified to IGP. Wines are fermented in old oak, with natural yeasts, minimal intervention, without fining or filtering. (Adapted from Gauntleys).
This wine: Varietal sauvignon blanc, closed with natural cork and sealing wax, 14% abv, BBR, £32.50
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity lemon, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, of medium (+) intensity, developing, with aromas of green apple peel, lightly bruised apple, limy citrus, galia melon, ripe grapefruit flesh, wet cut grass, sweet and green herbs and a hint of almond.
Palate: a dry wine, with medium (+) acidity, a low-key gummy grip, medium (+) alcohol and a medium body, a smooth texture, of medium (+) intensity, with flavours of lightly bruised apple, grapefruit pith, fresh herbage and almond. A long length, with a clean citrus-almond finish, showing a slight bitterness on the end.
Quality: A very good quality wine, with a balance of fresh acidity to alcohol, levels of which are in harmony with the decent intensity of flavour. A developing wine showing a good level of complexity, with much more on the nose, opening out as the wine aerates, and showing a tertiary nutty note. Intensity on the nose and palate follow through to the long clean finish. Ready to drink now this wine has the balance and intensity to keep and improve over the next 3-5 years.