Three White Wines for Christmas

(2022) These Languedoc vineyards enjoy both oceanic and Pyrenean influences, with clay-limestone and gravel soils. Aromatically the wine is fresh, but rounded, showing Asian pear and lightly tropical aromas, and a little gooseberry punch. In the mouth that peachiness comes through, but there is a salt-licked, lemony vivacious acidity too, that sense of minerality that delivers an interesting and quite complex mouthful at such a modest price.
(2022) A new vintage of Cloudy Bay's iconic Sauvignon Blanc is always eagerly awaited, and luckily for fans, this 2002 nicely reflects the quality of the vintage. The nose opens with a surge of exotic fruit: mango, guava and lychee, fused with elderflower and a little herbaceous green bean, but all integrated and harmonious. The palate has a full texture and plenty of weighty fruit concentration, a mouth-watering pink grapefruit core of keen acidity balancing nicely. You cannot deny the quality here.
(2022) Winemaker and owner Jacky Blot is a trailblazer for quality in the Montlouis appellation, growing Chenin Blanc on 45 hectares where chemical treatments are "practically non-existent," and yields dramatically low, averaging 25hl/ha. Malolactic fermentation is avoided, and the wines are matured in barriques of varying ages. This is a stunning example of Loire Chenin Blanc, a hint of gold to the colour, and the nose showing beeswax and ripe apple, with an undertow of nougat. In the mouth the full texture has a waxiness too, a nuttiness perhaps like Cox's pippin apples, and it is utterly mouth-watering. A pithy, dry finish adds to the gastronomic appeal of this delicious wine.

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