2015 Domaine de la Fontainerie Vouvray Sec
Region: Vouvray < Loire Valley < France
Grapes: Chenin Blanc
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Organic farming, chalky, porous limestone soil; 13% ABV .
Winemaker: Catherine Dhoye-Deruet
Hi guys, Cristin here. I’m the storyteller for the Vouvray this month. A long, long time ago, before kids, when I worked for a French wine importing company, my husband and I ventured to Vouvray to drink lots of Chenin (I mean, search for a new Vouvray producer ;) We had dinner the first night in the town of Vouvray at a restaurant where we were told we could find the best selection of regional wines in the central Loire. I sat down and explained my mission to the server, who promptly presented me with a blind flight of Vouvray. I couldn’t fault any of them but there was one wine that was clearly a level above – no let’s call it 10 levels above – the rest. She left me the business card – Domaine de la Fontainerie. As soon as I got back to the B&B I logged onto my computer and tried to find out all I could about them. We had a full day booked but I was going to do everything I could to persuade them to give me some of their time. And… as you might have guessed, they were already imported…so bummed! So I did what any self-respecting Chenin fan would and gave up the pursuit but vowed to drink as much of it as possible once we returned to the states. Unfortunately, that didn’t exactly happen since this wine is SO hard to come by! Catherine Dhoye-Deruet, current winemaker and owner (the property has been in her family since the 1700’s) works with only 6 ha and as no expansion plans. Everything is done by hand and yields are extremely low so inventory stateside is hard to come by. Which is too bad because it is so. damn. good! The precision is unreal, and there is so much power and grace. At first it’s all about the minerality, which has a chalky, wet rock thing going on – that’s the power part. And it definitely sports that classic wool note but that’s just the segue to the green apple, quince and acacia - grace. The finish is lengthy and thought provoking and makes me like – yeah, that what Chenin is supposed to be people!