(2021) A 'Sélection de Grains Nobles', made from Botrytis-affected grapes which were hand-picked from vines averaging 40 years of age. A medium- to deep, lightly-burnished gold, the nose has mint and a little honey and glycerine note, lemony but quite subtle. The palate has a delicious hint of tobacco and saffron, lots of apricot and peach fruit and terrific acidity, a streaking and fresh lime juice finish, giving this great balance into a long finish as the sweetness persists. Price for a 50cl bottle.
(2021) While searching online for clues to the producer I found a few reviews mentioning the classic descriptors for Pouilly Fumé, like 'flint' and 'smoke'. I have to say I found very little of that character in a wine that majors much more on its succulent fruit, with plenty of ripe pear and apple, maybe just a touch of green herbs. Zippy acidity offsets quite sweet, quite concentrated white fruits in the mouth, for a very pleasing white with good fruit, body and balance. Part of Lidl's summer 'Wine Tour'.
(2021) Mellot suggest not chilling this too much and I can understand that: the Pinot Noir character is quite strong, and a light chill wirks well. Rose-hip and cherry aromas lead on to a certain creaminess on the palate, relatively robust red fruits and super clean freshness from the lemon-fresh acidity and the touch of saline minerality.
(2021) Soils are mainly sand and silt on sandstone and schist, this cuvee aged in French oak barrels for 12 months, followed by a further 4-6 months in tank. There's a really appealing stony, mineral and taut character here, apple aromas span nutty Cox's pippin to green apple, the picture balanced between richness and alacrity. Gorgeous palate too I must say, textured and creamy, but with brilliance and a long, very fresh and vibrant finish that is mouth-watering.
(2021) This is late-harvest Chenin from shale soils with quartz on clay and sand. The vines in the Saint-Aubin region of Coteaux du Layon are over 40 years old, and the wine is made in stainless steel tanks. Buttercup yellow, it has a glorious nose, all ripe stone fruits, honey and glycerine, there is surely a little Botrytis present here too. In the mouth luscious and fully sweet, richly textured but shimmering with acidity to balance. A stand-out bargain, but note most retailers have moved to the following vintage at time of review.
(2021) Sadly, Frédéric Mabileau was killed in September 2020 in a micro-light accident. The 49-year-old vineyard for this wine was picked selectively when the berries were fully golden in colour. It was fermented in large foudre with natural yeasts, and aged in foudre for 16 months. It has a gorgeous nose of crushed almond, butter, mint and ripe red apple, almost Meursault-like and very appealing. Creamy and yet juicy on the palate, that crispness of acidity defines this, layered with ripe but not too sweet fruit and that light butteriness, it is a treat to drink.
(2021) Harvest for this cuvée takes place in October, with well-ripened, fully mature grapes, so a touch of sweetness would be expected. It is vinified in oak barrels where the wine ages on fine lees for 11 months. In practice the wine is sweet only in terms of fruit ripeness, a certain weight to the texture too, but clean and bright Chenin aromatics running from apple into firm peach, a little lusciousness on the lips before very good acidity kicks through. Could work with aromatic Chinese food this one.
(2021) A Crémant, so made by the traditional method with second fermentation in individual bottles, this is a blend of Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc and is made by the cooperative at Saumur on the Loire. Eighteen months on the lees has given a creaminess and almond sheen to the aromas, then the palate delivers plenty of bright apple and pear fruit, a fair bit of perceived sweetness but balanced by a lemon juice squeeze of acidity. Finish with a nice touch of biscuity richness, though the finish is modest. Inexpensive for a Crémant, and decent value for money.
(2021) Farmed organically and in the processing of gaining certification. Fermentation part in barrel, part in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts, then also matured in combination of barrels and steel on the lees. Labelled as 'Sec Tendre', this is a whisker from being dry, but the light touch of residual sugar gives immense drinkability. On the nose there's a distinct gravel and smoky mineral character however, a lively expressive wine, with a touch of leafy herbs and lemon. The palate has that gentle sweetness, but shimmering acidity too, ripe, clean apple and citrus playing against that easy-going, and quite delicious balance of the finish.
(2021) Blancs Palets, or 'white discs' references the white flint stones found on the limestone slopes of the vineyard for this Sancerre. Like Tinel-Blondelet's 2018 the Pouilly-Fume there's a coolness and restraint on the nose, but also an immediate sense of concentration. Apple and citrus are to the fore, just a subtle hine of something more exotic peeking through, but very direct. It is juicy on the palate, and though there is a hint of pineapple or something more tropical, maybe mango, it's really all about the crisp Asian pear and lemony thrust of the wine, the finish long, cool and staying intense to the last drop of flavour. £15.99 as part of a mixed six.