Francois Chidaine Vouvrey le Bouchet 2005
from Loire, France
The Le Bouchet vineyard comprises three hectares of the Clos Baudoin estate in Vouvray. Traditionally it has been vinified as a demi-sec wine, and François Chidaine seems willing to continue in that direction. The soil consists of deep clay and limestone over a subsoil of tuffa, the bedrock in the area from which the deep cellars are carved and out of which the villages are built. It is porous and provides water to the vines in even the driest of summers. The average age of the vines is fifty years and they yield only 20 hectoliters per hectare. Harvesting done manually in several passes through the vineyard. Chidaine never chaptalizes wines that will finish with residual sugar. This wine shows notes of quince, pears and spring blossoms in the nose. In the mouth it is very rich, but with nice balance.
"The Chidaine 2005 Vouvray Le Bouchet – from a botrytis-prone site where Fouquet often harvests a superb moelleux – is itself effectively a super-rich demi-sec or moelleux. Heady honeysuckle and gardenia mingle with subtly pungent, prickling spice and citrus zest and the pure honey of botrytis in the nose. Honey, lime cream, candied ginger and tangerine rind, cinnamon, and persistent sweet florality fill the mouth and combine for a long, honeyed, floral, spicy finish. This opulent entry lacks the clarity or mineral dimension of the best Chidaine 2005s, but it also needs several years to shed its puppy fat and for its botrytis-inflected personality to be fully revealed."
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