Marc Bredif Vouvray 2012
With its majestic cellars in the heart of the Touraine, Marc Brédif has been one of the most famous Vouvray and Chinon houses since 1893. When Baron de Ladoucette took over the house in 1980, he breathed new life into the century old winery, while preserving its traditions. Today, Marc Brédif continues to produce Vouvray and Chinon wines of the finest quality.
The grapes for the Marc Brédif Chinon grow in the northern part of the Chinon area, in Savigny-en-Véron. The vineyards are principally gravelly and have mostly north / south sun exposure. Grown on the lower slopes along the Loire Valley in Vouvray and Vernou-sur-Brenne, the grapes for the Marc Brédif Vouvray enjoy Northern/Southern exposure.
The troglodytical (cave-like) cellars of Marc Brédif are among the largest and most beautiful of the appellation. The cold and humid caves, dug deep into the hillsides, offer extraordinary wine storage conditions.
An important white wine appellation in the Touraine and one of the top in all of the Loire, Vouvray uniquely specializes in a wide range of styles from dry to sweet, and still to sparkling, each with its own definitive character. Vouvray is almost always 100% Chenin blanc (however up to 5% Menu Pineau is theoretically allowed but not often used).
Vouvray is also the name of a pretty little town just east of Tours on the northern bank of the Loire—its vineyards surround it to the northeast. Houses and cellars are carved out of the local tuffeau, a chalky or sandy, fine-grained limestone. Vineyards inhabit clay and gravel topsoil over tuffeau on the plateau, the best of which have a slight slope with a southerly aspect.
Chenin blanc’s high acidity and natural adaptability allow it to produce a wide range of styles with enormous success. Styles under the Vouvray name include sparkling, both Brut and Demi-Sec and still: Sec (dry) and Tendre (off-dry) as well as Demi-Sec (noticeably sweet), Moelleux (very sweet) and Liquoreaux (botrytized). Most can age about five years but the best quality versions will continue to improve over decades.
Unquestionably one of the most diverse grape varieties, Chenin Blanc can do it all. It shines in every style from bone dry to unctuously sweet, oaked or unoaked, still or sparkling and even as the base for fortified wines and spirits. Perhaps Chenin Blanc’s greatest asset is its ever-present acidity, maintained even under warm growing conditions. Somm Secret—Landing in South Africa in the mid 1800s, today the country has double the acreage of Chenin Blanc planted compared to France. There is also a new wave of dedicated producers committed to restoring old Chenin vines.