Domaine des Deux Vallees, AOC/AOP Savennieres, Loire, France, 2012
Savenierres is a dry chenin blanc appellation on the right bank of the Loire, to the south-west of Angers. There are 3 separate AOC/AOP wines entitled to the appellation:
- *Savennieres – Coulee de Serrant (7 ha of SW facing former monastic vineyard, owned by biodynamic proprietor Nicolas Joly, premium wines, one of only 3 single estate appellations, the others being Chateau Grillet and Romanee-Conti)
- *Savennieres – La Roche aux Moines
* These two being, according to James Seely in The Loire Valley and its Wines (1989), …… the Rolls Royce and Bentley of the appellation ……
A nominal tasting description for Savennieres (courtesy of www.vinsvaldeloire.fr) … intense and complex nose, occasionally austere in the early years. Aromas of linden (lime tree blossom), aniseed, grapefruit, pear, honey and quince jelly. Marked with strong minerality, it evolves towards hazelnut, gentle spices and candied notes (grapefruit, lemon).
This wine: is produced from a half-hectare plot on alluvial-schistous soils, typical of the appellation. Mandatory hand harvesting, in tries. Varietal chenin blanc (aka pineau de la loire), natural cork closure, 14% abv, Averys, £16
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, pale intensity gold, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, of pronounced intensity, developing, with a strident aroma of warm quince, stewed apple, warm hay, honeyed hazelnuts, a bit waxy, and drying stones (my equivalent to minerality).
Palate: a dry wine, medium (+) acidity, the lightest gummy grip, medium (+) alcohol and a medium (+) body, with a smooth oily texture, of medium (+) intensity, with flavours of ripe quince, bruised green apple, and warm honeyed hay. A long length with a clean warm hay finish, the lightest gummy grip and a very light bitterness at the end.
Quality: a very good quality wine, well structured with perfectly balanced fresh acidity with alcohol, both in keeping with the rich intensity of flavour. The rich intense nose follows through to the mid-palate and on to the long length. A wine of modest complexity but a good level of flavour concentration, and showing tertiary development with notes of honey, nuts and wax.
Readiness for drinking/potential for ageing: ready to drink now. This is a well-developed wine with good structure and balance, and concentration reflected in the long length. It will develop and improve over the next 3-5 years, with progressively deeper honeyed nuts and dried citrus notes.