2012 Baudry "Les Grézeaux" and Other Highlights of the Loire!

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We're very fortunate to have visited and tasted with Matthieu and Bernard Baudry many times over the last few years, and we're excited to offer the vibrant 2012 Chinon "Les Grézeaux" that we first tasted out of barrel in May of 2013.  I was struck then with the lovely purity of the fruit, the vibrant acidity and the strong mineral presence on the palate and finish. Subsequent tastings have confirmed the quality of this beautiful wine - a bit lighter than the superb 2010, but more "transparent," offering a superb blend of fruit and minerals that will be invigorating as a young wine and that will age into a velvety beauty over the next 20 years. The 2012 Clos Guillot and Croix Boissée will arrive in late winter 2015, but in the meantime we have the very delicious and more forward 2011s to enjoy. The Baudry family continues to make some of the most elegant and traditional wines of the Loire Valley, with great farming, their own natural compost, careful hand harvesting, natural vinifications and perfect cellaring in vats and aged barrels. Congratulations to Bernard, Matthieu and family! (Arrival October 3rd)

Please peruse the balance of this email for some exciting new arrivals from our favorite Valley! Featured are the last wines from Beatrice and Michel Augé, heroes of Biodynamics, and the first wines from their successors, Paul and Corinne Gillet (please see the recent article on wineterroirs.com); re-releases from Clos Roche Blanche; "natural" Chenin Blanc from Jean-Claude Garnier; sensational sous-voile Menu Pineau from La Lunotte; new arrivals from Etienne Courtois, Francois Chidaine, and More....

No Longer Available

Baudry 2011 Chinon Domaine

We're getting to the end of the 2011 vintage of this great wine from Bernard and Matthieu Baudry -  all Cabernet Franc of course, a blend of 80% from a parcel in St. Louans, where the thin clay/limestone soils give earthy well-structured wines, with 20% from gravel soils near Cravant, giving supple fruit. Organic farming, wild-yeast fermentation, aging in 5 to 10 year-old wooden vats and casks. This is a softer, more easy-going version of the superb 2010, with rounder strawberry, blackberry and earth on the palate but with ample structure and acidity. Which means that this is really delicious to drink right now, served a bit cool, and should keep well for six to ten years or more. Perfect with roast chicken!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

Baudry 2011 Chinon Les Grézeaux

The Baudry Chinon "Les Grézeaux" seems to be excellent every year, regardless of weather. This unique bottom-slope vineyard of gravel over clay, sand and limestone gives supple, balanced wines that drink beautifully young and are capable of long-term aging as well. In 2011, the wine is rounder and more forward than it's neighbors from 2010 and 2012, and yet the underlying acidity and structure promise 15 to 20 years in the cellar. The wine shows deep blackberry and strawberry compote aromas, with cocoa, violet, earth and musk. The palate is quite full with deep berry fruit, saline mineral and spice, and is framed in juicy acidity. Delicious! (last of inventory)

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $25.99

Baudry 2011 Chinon Le Clos Guillot

2011 is a very good vintage for the Baudry Clos Guillot as the well-drained hillside vineyard on "tuffeau jaune" suffered less from the wet conditions in the spring. This is a superbly elegant Chinon, with subtle, cool, minty red and black fruits and refreshing acidity. Lovely to drink now served cool, this will repay five to fifteen years of cellaring—really a lovely Burgundian style! (Last of inventory)

 

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $32.99

Baudry 2011 Chinon La Croix Boissée

This superb Chinon is from a sloping vineyard of clay soils over limestone (tuffeau blanc) in Cravant. The 2010 was a perfect wine and the 2011 comes very close to that high standard, due to the great vineyard and cellar work of the Baudrys. Deep red/black color. Elegant deep blackberry, powdered stone, violet and musk aromas. (A kinship, perhaps, in freshness and style with those parcels in Cornas on limestone?) Cool, elegant fruit on the palate — silky red and black fruits with menthol, cocoa and earth, really lovely. Light on its feet and with a refreshing finish, but with superb depth and length as well. This can be drunk young with great pleasure — best probably 2024–2034 but why wait? (last of inventory)

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $39.99

Maisons Brûlées (Michel Augé) 2010 Vin de Table L'Erèbe

For many years we have enjoyed tasting and talking with Béatrice and Michel Augé—a soft-spoken and intelligent couple who farm nine hectares in Pouillé, above the Cher river in Touraine. They are certified biodynamic and use no sugar, yeasts or other additives and bottle without sulfur if the vintage allows. We're proud to have a growing number of their wines in the store. The 2010 L'Erèbe is made from Côt and Cabernet Franc and was bottled without added SO2. "The sulfur used as a preservative annihilates many of the positive effects of wine" says Michel. The wine is aromatically superb with complex black fruits with earth and spice. The palate is full and very expressive, but light in weight with crisp acidity—an invigorating and interesting experience! Highly recommended. (for photos and additional info check-out the wineterroirs.com article from 2005)

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Maisons Brûlées (Michel Augé) 2011 Vin de Table L'Art de l'eau

From Pineau D'Aunis, Gamay and Pinot Noir grown in Michel and Béatrice Augé's beautiful biodynamic vineyards in Pouillé, Touraine. No sulfites or additives of any kind, pure juice! Unique deep blackberry, red currant, floral and white pepper aromas with earth and bitter chocolate. The palate is full and ripe but with cool, lifting acidity — blackberry, prune, earth and spice, really lovely. Long, earthy finish. This is a delicious natural wine, perfect with charcuterie, paté and any lighter meat dishes — serve cool. DL

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Maisons Brûlées (Michel Augé) 2012 Vin de France Poussière de Lune

A brilliant natural wine from Michel and Béatrice Augé, now retired, from old-vine Sauvignon Blanc in their amazing biodynamic vineyards near Pouillé. The Augés have always practiced some of the most beautiful farming in France, even inventing special plows that don't break the surface, to protect the life in the soil. The 2012 Poussiere de Lune is a cloudy pale bronze color, with marvelously complex aromas of ripe pear, apricot, green tea and lime-flower with hints of red fruits as well. Strong acidity on the palate with ripe yellow fruits, red berries, blood orange and mineral flavors with terrific length. This wine should be on the table of all lovers of natural wines! (Yes, it will turn a bit brown with air as there is no added SO2). Highly recommended!

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $24.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Maisons Brûlées 2013 Vin de France Bullées Blanc

In 2013 Paul and Corinne Gillet have taken over at Les Maisons Brûlées, continuing the brilliant biodynamic work of Béatrice and Michel Augé. Their first releases are two delightful Pet Nats, Les Maisons Bullées, Blanc and Rosé. The white, made from Sauvignon Blanc, has lovely pear, apple, herbal, mint and honeysuckle aromas, really pretty. Refreshing lemony pétillance on the palate with creamy white fruits, citrus and herbal flavors. This is a lively and complex wine that's naturally delicious, with no added sulfites. DL

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  • white sparkling
  • 0 in stock
  • $21.49

Maisons Brûlées 2013 Vin de France Bullées Rosé

Pet Nat Gamay from Paul and Corinne Gillet, the new proprietors of Les Maisons Brûlées in Pouillé. Creamy raspberry, citrus and floral aromas lead to a light refreshing palate of lively raspberry, watermelon and violet flavors with a hint of sweetness. Just naturally delicious, light and lovely at 11% alcohol, biodynamic farming, no added sulfites! DL

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé sparkling
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $21.49

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Clos Roche Blanche 2013 Touraine Sauvignon Bl No. 2 (10/3)

Another great Touraine Sauvignon Blanc from Catherine and Didier at Clos Roche Blanche! Quince, pear, citrus, herbal and leafy aromas, really complex and lovely. The palate is intensely mineral, with fig, lemon, pear and stone with brisk acidity. An intense "wine of nature" that is brisk and complex now, but will improve with a few years in the cellar and will probably be wonderful in 2024! (2014 is their last vintage, time to stock up!) DL

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic

Lunotte (Christophe Foucher) NV Vin de France 2 Temps en Temps

Christophe Foucher's vineyards are on a hill above the Cher river, about a mile east of the Clos Roche Blanche. He produces tiny quantities of distinctive natural wines from Cabernet Franc, Gamay, Sauvignon Blanc and Menu Pineau, including superb "micro-cuvées" that occasionally reach the US at Chambers Street. "2 Temps en Temps" is a fantastic and successful experiment of about 800 bottles—Menu Pineau from 2008 and 2009 fermented and aged "sous-voile" in an old barrel without SO2, bottled in early 2014. Light gold/bronze color. Superb, rather intense aromas of hay, lemon oil, pear, almond and white chocolate. The palate is mineral and saline with citrus, pear and herbal flavors. Fabulous length with dusty stone and citrus in the finish. Just delicious! This is a beautifully intense sous-voile wine that will be perfect with ceviche and shellfish, coq au vin jaune aux morilles, strong cheeses....

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $22.99

Garnier, Jean-Christophe 2012 Vin de France La Roche Bézigon Nature

*This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.


100% Chenin Blanc. 0% added sulfur. Garnier strikes again! We have been thrilled to have access to wines from this exciting vigneron from the Loire, and each new bottling brings anticipation and curiosity. Garnier made two versions of this wine — one with a tiny addition of sulfur at bottling, and one without any added sulfur ("Nature"). The Nature is sharp and shimmery with crisp white stone fruit on the palate and a fresh zippiness that is life-affirming at the least. I noticed the slightest (VERY subtle) oxidative notes, which are most likely a result of extremely careful natural winemaking and the effect that a little bit of oxygen can have on a very sensitive wine like this one. Truly an enjoyable (and totally clean) natural wine and another example of Garnier's skills in the vineyard and cellar. Eben Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $27.99

Pinon 2011 Vouvray Sec

A beautiful Vouvray Sec from our friend François Pinon, which rarely makes its way to the US. The 2011 has subtle aromas of lemon zest, stone, quince and honeysuckle. There is very firm acidity on the palate with citrus, stone, pine and bitter almond with terrific structure and length. This should be decanted or opened in advance if drinking now, and will be lovely in 10 years, or 20 years...

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $23.99

Luneau-Papin 2012 Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Le "L" d'Or

From a parcel of old vines on granite soils in Vallet that always gives a racy, mineral wine that can age for 20 years and more. I'm not partial to the new label, but otherwise this is a great vintage for "L" d'Or. 2012 was a low-yielding year giving wines with excellent concentration matched with bracing acidity. The wine shows lovely aromas of pear liqueur, citrus, stone and white pepper; the palate is dense with white fruits, intense saline minerals with firm acidity in the long citrus/mineral finish. You know what to do...

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $19.99

Courtois (Les Cailloux du Paradis) 2010 VdF Romorantin

We're very happy to offer a few bottles of the wonderful 2010 Romorantin, 2nd bottling, from Claude and Etienne Courtois. Light gold color. Intense aromas of dried flowers, citrus confit, ripe pear, hay and earth. The palate shows bracing acidity with saline stone, lemon/orange zest, ripe white fruits, petrol, clove and earth with fabulous mineral/acid length. Shows great richness but finishes dry — an extraordinary bottle of Romarantin that will age indefinitely, even though there is no added SO2. DL

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $30.99

  • No Sulfur

Courtois, Étienne 2012 Vin de France Quartz

The Courtois family farms a balanced & completely chemical free 13 hectares of vines in the heart of the VDP Sologne. “Nothing comes into my vineyard,” he says, meaning no chemicals ever. He has created a well-balanced bio-diversity with trees, fruit trees, vines, woods, fields. No pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, chemical fertilizers, or synthetic chemicals of any kind are allowed on the vines or in the soil of the vineyards. Quartz, 100% Sauvignon Blanc, is hand harvested, fermented with wild yeasts with extended maceration and ages in old barrels, no added SO2. The wine shows ethereal aromas of lemon, hay, flower, pear and stone, really lovely. The palate is dense but light with firm stony acidity and flavors of quince, pear, citrus and caramel with a long very mineral saline finish. This is a beautiful, natural Sauvignon, delicious now, perhaps best after five years of aging.

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $29.99

  • No Sulfur