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Domaine Vacheron Sancerre 2009

Sauvignon Blanc from Loire, France
  • RP89
0% ABV
  • RP90
  • RP92
  • WS89
  • RP88
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Winemaker Notes

Mineral-rich, zesty Sauvignon Blanc primarily from flint soils in Sancerre. Aged in stainless steel tank for 8 months.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 89
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Just bottled the week I tasted it, and representing a mere third of a normal crop due to the loss to hail, the Vacheron 2009 Sancerre – which as usual mingles around half each flint and classic chalk soils – smells of pennyroyal, clover, blackcurrant, fennel, and very ripe honeydew melon. The melon and herb melange on the palate manages to have an at least metaphorically cooling not to mention a literally luscious effect, which is good considering there is 14.6% alcohol to deal with here. This might well be even more expressive now after having rested from bottling. I would however plan on enjoying it over the next couple of years, not longer, due to the vintage style and alcohol.
Rated: 89+
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Domaine Vacheron

Domaine Vacheron

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Domaine Vacheron, , France - Other regions
Domaine Vacheron
The Vacheron vineyards are all close to the village of Sancerre itself and have been in the family for 9 generations. Today, this domaine is run by two cousins, the Messieurs Vacheron. Both have sons studying viticulture to carry on the family tradition. The vineyards cover 34 hectares with two principal soil types; "silex" and "caillotte" or chalk.

Organic viticulture has been a goal of the family for a number of years; as of 2003, the entire estate was certified organic. The following year the winery was converted completely to biodynamic agriculture--to be sure, you won't find more terroir-driven Sancerre anywhere else in the appellation. Jean-Dominique and Jean-Laurent Vacheron are ably leading the domaine to ever-loftier winemaking heights. The wines speak for themselves—always consistent, the quality of Vacheron Sancerre continues to astound.

Montalcino

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Famous for its bold, layered and long-lived red, Brunello di Montalcino, the town of Montalcino is about 70 miles south of Florence, and has a warmer and drier climate than Chianti. The Sangiovese grape is responsible for both Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti but Montalcino has its own clone, which the locals call Brunello.

The Brunello vineyards of Montalcino blanket the rolling hills surrounding the village, which fan out at various elevations. The variations of elevation and soils create Brunellos of different styles. From the valleys with deeper deposits of clay, the wines are typically bolder and deeper in color with more opulent black fruit. These wines tend to take better to aging in some percentage of new French oak barrels. The hillside wines and vineyards at higher elevations produce wines more concentrated in red fruits and floral aromas. These sites reach up to over 1,600 feet and have shallow soils of rocks and shale. These, in general, may be aged in larger and more traditional oak casks

Brunello di Montalcino by law must be aged a minimum of four years, including two years in barrel before realease and once released, typically needs more time in bottle for its drinking potential to be fully reached. The good news is that Montalcino makes a “baby brother” version. The wines called Rosso di Montalcino are often made from younger vines, aged for about a year before release, offer extraordinary values and are ready to drink young.

Sangiovese

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The perfect intersection of bright fruit and savory earthiness, Sangiovese is the backbone variety in Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Elsewhere throughout Italy, it can make inexpensive wines for daily consumption ranging from inoffensive to deliciously easy. On the French island of Corsica, under the name Nielluccio, it produces excellent bright and refreshing red and rosé wines with a personality of their own. Sangiovese has also enjoyed moderate popularity in California and Washington State over the last few decades.

In the Glass

Sangiovese is a medium-bodied red with savory flavors of tart cherry, plum, tomato, fresh tobacco, anise, thyme, oregano, and dried earth. High-quality, well-aged examples will take on notes of smoke, clay pot, leather, gamey meat, potpourri, and dried fruits. Corsican Nielluccio is distinguished by a subtle perfume of dried flowers.

Perfect Pairings

Sangiovese is the ultimate pizza and pasta red—its high acidity, moderate alcohol, and grainy tannins create an affinity with tomato-based dishes, spicy meats, and anything off the barbecue.

Sommelier Secret

Although it is the star variety of Tuscany, cult-classic “Super-Tuscan” wines may contain no Sangiovese at all! Since the 1970s, local winemakers have been producing big, bold wines (with price tags to match) that are typically monovarietal or a blend of one or more of several international varieties—usually Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, or Syrah—with or without Sangiovese.

WAL446758_2009 Item# 106848

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