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Domaine Vacheron Sancerre Le Pave 2016

  • D94
750ML / 0% ABV
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  • WE90
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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Aromas of oyster shells, wildflowers, crisp pear and lemon zest. Refined and pure, with impressive definition.

Pairs well with fresh oysters or other shellfish; goat cheese

Critical Acclaim

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D 94
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Le Pavé comes from an east-facing vineyard planted on Cretaceous marl soils. The effects of its élevage are still perceptible, with spices on the exuberant nose along with a camphorated note. There's good density on the fresh palate, with an underlying acidity that brings welcome tension and length to the texture. A Sancerre built to last 10 to 15 years.
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Domaine Vacheron

Domaine Vacheron

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Domaine Vacheron, France
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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.

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Sancerre

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Marked by its charming hilltop village in the easternmost territory of the Loire, Sancerre is famous for its racy, vivacious, citrus-dominant Sauvignon blanc. Its enormous popularity in 1970s French bistros led to its success as the go-to restaurant white around the globe in the 1980s.

While the region claims a continental climate, noted for short, hot summers and long, cold winters, variations in topography—rolling hills and steep slopes from about 600 to 1,300 feet in elevation—with great soil variations, contribute the variations in character in Sancerre Sauvignon blancs.

In the western part of the appellation, clay and limestone soils with Kimmeridgean marne, especially in Chavignol, produce powerful wines. Moving closer to the actual town of Sancerre, soils are gravel and limestone, producing especially delicate wines. Flint (silex) soils close to the village produce particularly perfumed and age-worthy wines.

About ten percent of the wines claiming the Sancerre appellation name are fresh and light red wines made from Pinot noir and to a lesser extent, rosés. While not typically exported in large amounts, they are well-made and attract a loyal French following.

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Sauvignon Blanc

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A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. However, a couple of commonalities always exist—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is most important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand, California, Australia and parts of northeastern Italy. Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon blanc.

In the Glass

From its homeland In Bordeaux, winemakers prefer to blend it with Sémillon to produce a softer, richer style. In the Loire Valley, it expresses citrus, flint and smoky flavors, especially from in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. Marlborough, New Zealand often produces a pungent and racy version, reminiscent of cut grass, gooseberry and grapefruit. California's style is fruit-driven, in either a soft and oak-aged or snappy and fresh version.

Perfect Pairings

The freshness of Sauvignon blanc’s flavor lends it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood and mild Asian cuisine. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like artichokes or asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it matches well with complex seafood and chicken dishes.

Sommelier Secret

Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon blanc is a proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (herbaceous aromatic compounds) inherent to each member of the family.

IPOPI_JH3922_2016 Item# 522525