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Domaine de la Taille Aux Loups Vin de France Bretonniere 2015

Chenin Blanc from France
  • WS91
0% ABV
  • WS92
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Winemaker Notes

The Clos Bretonniere combines remarkable density and richness with vivacity deriving from the wine’s minerality and focused acidity. It can be enjoyed young for the accessible fruit – especially if decanted – or aged for many years which will bring out the nuances of a great Chenin Blanc.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 91
Wine Spectator
Delicious, with ebullient yellow apple, green almond and mirabelle plum notes, carried by vibrant acidity. The long finish is inlaid with verbena and quince accents.
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Domaine de la Taille Aux Loups

Domaine de la Taille Aux Loups

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Domaine de la Taille Aux Loups, France
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A new star has emerged in the heart of the Loire Valley: he is Jacky Blot of Domaine de la Taille aux Loups, in Montlouis and Vouvray. Montlouis is located on the southern bank of the Loire, opposite Vouvray. Blot, originally a Loire wine broker by profession, acquired about 8 hectares of 50-75 year old vines in 1989. These prized, ancient parcels belonged to families that could no longer continue to cultivate the vines and so entrusted them to Blot and his team. Blot brought a passion and exacting determination to make wines of only the highest quality, well beyond the norm of the day. Now more than 25 years on, Blot is the acknowledged pioneer of the region and is credited with having taken Chenin Blanc to unprecedented heights of quality.

Nearly synonymous with fine wine and all things epicurean, France has a culture of wine production and consumption that is deeply rooted in tradition. Many of the world’s most beloved grape varieties originated here, as did the concept of “terroir”—soil type, elevation, slope angle and mesoclimate combine to produce resulting wines that convey a sense of place. Accordingly, most French wine is labeled by geographical location, rather than grape variety. So a general understaning of which grapes correspond to which regions can be helpful in navigating all of the types of French wine. Some of the greatest wine regions in the world are here, including Bordeaux, Burgundy, the Rhône, and Champagne, but each part of the country has its own specialties and strengths.

Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, are the king and queen of Burgundy, producing elegant red and white wines with great acidity, the finest examples of which can age for decades. The same varieties, along with Pinot Meunier, are used in Champagne. Of comparable renown is Bordeaux, focused on bold, structured red wines made of blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc including sometimes a small amount of Petit Verdot or Malbec. The primary white varieties of Bordeaux are Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon. The Rhône Valley is responsible for monovarietal Syrah in the north, while the south specializes in Grenache blends; Rhône's main white variety is Viognier.

Most of these grape varieties are planted throughout the country and beyond, extending their influence into other parts of Europe and New World appellations.

Chenin Blanc

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Responsible for some of the world’s highest quality white wines, Chenin Blanc doesn’t always get the recognition it deserves. Unquestionably at its best in its birthplace of the Loire Valley, Chenin Blanc can do it all—from bone dry to unctuously sweet, still or sparkling. Perhaps Chenin Blanc’s greatest asset is its ever-present acidity, maintained even under warm growing conditions. Chenin Blanc is planted in California, namely in the Clarksburg AVA but also very widely planted in South Africa, where it is occasionally labeled as “Steen.”

In the Glass

Chenin Blanc ranges from austere to richly sweet, with aromas of McIntosh apple, honey, beeswax, jasmine, hay, and quince. When grown in warmer regions, Chenin Blanc develops richer, tropical-fruit flavors, such as pineapple and melon, as well as ripe stone fruit. Often these wines carry some residual sugar.

Perfect Pairings

Cool-climate Chenin Blanc has the structure, austerity, and chalky acidity to work with antipasti or unadorned seafood, such as oysters and shellfish. Off-dry styles work well with the sweet-and-sour nature of Thai and Vietnamese food.

Sommelier Secret

There are several appellations throughout the Loire Valley devoted to producing different styles of Chenin Blanc. Vouvray, Saumur, Anjou, and Savennieres are known for excellent dry and off-dry wines; Vouvray, along with Montlouis, Bonnezeaux, and Quarts de Chaume, produces glorious late-picked sweet wines whose high sugar levels are offset by Chenin Blanc’s hallmark acidity. Sparkling Crèmant de Loire, Saumur, and Vouvray provide delightfully affordable and flavorful alternatives to Champagne.

SRKFJC009_2015 Item# 233981