Dom. Francis Blanchet Pouilly Fume Cuvee Silice 2008
Sauvignon Blanc from Loire, France
Winemaker Francis Blanchet's vineyard is 100% flint stone—crack two rocks together and it's as if you've shot a cap gun—sweet, mineral smoke. The mouth is incredibly juicy, with suggestions of lychee gelato and Meyer lemon, a touch of herbs and metal shavings. Organically raised; low sulfur.
The Wine Advocate - "The Blanchet 2008 Pouilly-Fume Silice mingles fresh lime, grapefruit, musk melon, mint, and black currant in an intensely aromatic and mouth-watering melange, hints of nettle and salt adding invigoration to the finish. This silken-textured, ultra-refreshing, buoyant expression of flint and Sauvignon should drink beautifully for at least the next 6 years. "
International Wine Cellar - "Pale gold. Expressive bouquet of lemon zest, honeysuckle, wet stone and ginger, with a subtle smoky undertone. Dry, nervy, precise citrus and floral flavors pack a solid punch but are fat-free and incisive. The finish features a sweeter honeydew quality and lingers with very good smoky persistence."
Dom. Francis Blanchet Winery
You may never have heard of "scratch and sniff" terroir before, but the vineyards in Pouilly-Fumé offer an aromatic, unforgettable lesson on Sauvignon Blanc’s flinty soul.
We stood in the center of the "Silice" vineyard during a recent visit when winemaker Francis Blanchet grabbed two rocks from the ground, smashed them together—and then held them up for us to smell. Now the whole terroir concept is interesting, but sniffing rocks is weird. But Blanchet insisted—and right there we got a good whiff of what makes "Cuvée Silice" so firecracker-fresh.
The unmistakable smell of an exploding cap gun, memories of childhood Fourth of July fun. These rocks, and the "Silice" vineyard, are 100% flint stone. The smoky energy in every one of these rocks is absorbed by each, perfect Sauvignon Blanc grape. It's what puts the smoke in "Fumé" and the bracing, enervating minerality in classic Sauvignon Blanc from this excellent estate. For more than a decade we’ve been lucky enough to sample Blanchet's crystalline Sauvignon Blanc and have been knocked off our feet each time. Here is white wine with both bite and body, sweet white fruit wrapped in a refreshingly light, citrus lining. Exactly what Pouilly-Fumé is supposed to be—balanced, fresh and fruity, and at its heart a stony, flint-inspired soul.
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About LoireView a map of Loire wineries Chenin Blanc, Muscadet and Sauvignon Blanc. For reds, Cabernet Franc takes center stage but the region also has plantings of Pinot Noir and Gamay. The AC of Cremant de Loire is popular – these are the sparkling wines of the Loire, usually made with Chenin Blanc.
Notable FactsAs for which grapes you find in which regions… Starting on the Atlantic Coast and moving east - Muscadet hails from the region of the same name, within the larger Nantes district, right on the Atlantic coast. The wines are dry, citrusy and pleasant, but rarely powerful or intensely aromatic. Just inland from Nantes is Anjou-Samur, home to Savennières, an excellent source of dry Chenin Blanc. To the east is Touraine, where you'll find the popular white region of Vouvray - Chenin Blanc shines in Vouvray, which can be dry, off-dry or sweet – the majority of those found in the states are a lovely and food-friendly off-dry. In the same district, Cabernet Franc makes delicious, delicate and elegant reds from Bourguil and Chinon. Finally, in the Upper Loire area, Sancerre and Pouilly Fumé turn out Sauvignon Blancs of razor sharp acidity and minerality.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
Customer ReviewsSign In to Add Your Review4.54.5 out of 5 stars
2 ratings, 2 with reviewsEtienne - Grand Junction, CO58/24/2010This Sauvignon is superb! I bought it as a substitute for a particularly good Touraine that I couldn't find. Paired with crab, summer vegetables and cheese, it was the star of the evening! Clean and crisp, it was the archetype of what is best of the Loire. Not a hint of the tendency that some Marlboroughs have toward strong vegetal, even asparagus, tones.48/10/2010Very pleasant refreshing white wine with a full body and no acidic finish