Thursday, 22 March 2012

Wine of the week #24: Chenin Blanc Vouvray (White/France)

Hi all,

I'm coming back to the pre-origins of this blog this week but with an historic favourite of mine: the Vouvray demi-sec! 
No specific recommendation this week, except to grab one of this very underestimated wine and try it!

It is:

A medium-dry white wine made from Chenin Blanc and from the area around the town of Vouvray in Loire (France).

You can expect:
Appearance: deep & bright lemon

Nose: green apple, citrus and honey

Palate: slightly but extremely refreshing with fresh ripe green apple and citrus flavours. 
It's basically like biting in a Granny Smith green apple: sweet, fruity and with an intense refreshing acidity!

You'll like it if you like: Granny Smith apples, Muscat, Moscato d'Asti; slightly sweet German Rieslings.

Have it:
On its own chilled.
With an Italian salad with feta, celeri and with a sprinkle of lemon in your dressing.
With your main meal e.g. a garlic-lemon-chilli chicken dish. 

Find it:
2) Majestic - La Grille - £6.99 (on offer) - If it's the same level as the La Grille's Sauvignon Blanc, this is bound to be excellent! 
3) Waitrose - Vieux Vauvert £8.50 - Award-winning wine.
4) Laithwaites - Réserve Champalou £11.99 - Champalou is known to be one of the best producer of Vouvray so you can't go wrong.

Did you know?
> The Chenin Blanc grape originates from the Loire Valley but it is also the most planted grape variety in South Africa (twice as many ha in South Africa vs. France). Chenin Blanc can be blended  with Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.

> The Chenin Blanc grape is so versatile and thrives so well in the Loire terroir that you can find Vouvray wines in dry ('sec'), medium-dry ('demi-sec'), sweet ('moelleux') or even sparkling.

> Chenin Blanc has cultivated in the Loire Valley since the 9th Century with monks playing a key role in the development of the vineyards, especially in the middle ages.

> Vouvray is usually 100% Chenin Blanc. The quality is highly dependent on the weather as the grape buds early (when spring frost could still be an issue) and ripens late (needs long and warm growing season i.e. a nice autumn).

Go out, get a bottle & enjoy!