Friday, September 21, 2007

More Deliciousness from Cheverny

Remember a few weeks ago when I made a grandiose pronouncement about finding the finest value red of the season? That wine was from the Cheverny appellation in the Loire Valley. Cheverny is one of several places in the Loire that offers truly beautiful wines for around $15, sometimes less. Of course, they're all going up in price as the dollar continues its downward spiral...

Whites, like reds in Cheverny, must be blended. Sauvignon Blanc tends to dominate the blends, the balance typically Chardonnay. I don't drink much Sauvignon Blanc. I find most of them to be super pungent and intense on the nose. Finding a balanced Sauvignon Blanc is not easy, something that doesn't smack me with grassy cat-pee aromas, something that compliments food. I won't lie to you folks, I've had no success in New Zealand, and mixed results in California. I really want to like Long Island Sauvignon Blanc but I just don't, so far. Lenn is going to help me find the right wines, I hope. Not enough experience with white Bordeaux do say anything meaningful.

When I want Sauvignon Blanc, I turn to - you guessed it - the Loire Valley. Sancerre and Pouilly Fume are the big shots for Sauvignon Blanc in the Loire Valley, but great wines hail from appellations like Menetou Salon, Quincy, Touraine, and tiny Cheverny, and at about half the price.

This little gem from Domaine du Salvard, without question an under $15 beauty, should be part of your fall white wine collection. It's a bottle you can open without occasion on a Wednesday night, or to surprise fellow wine lovers as an aperitif or with a seafood course. And it's elegant and balanced enough to be enjoyable as an aperitif.

2006 Domaine du Salvard Cheverny, $14 (Prospect Wine Shop, but Wine Library has it for $11). Vibrant aromas of lemon peel, grass, and wet stones - tangy, but not overwhelmingly so. The nose will seem refined and mellow if you're used to the New Zealand stuff. The flavors have really good focus and purity. There is citrus and plenty of minerals, and even a touch of that gooseberry flavor that I associate with Sauvignon Blanc. Zippy acidity balances the fleshiness of the wine. This is so drinkable, and at 12.5% alcohol you can have a glass while cooking, another with dinner, and another while brushing your teeth before bed.

If I were you, I would find two friends and split a case of this wine - four bottles of this for $44 is simply ridiculous. I bought four bottles, and I find myself conserving the wine now, like I do more expensive bottles. I am saving my last two to impress my wino friends who I bet will think it a pricey Sancerre. I will let you know the results of that experiment once it's completed.

11 comments:

Steve L. said...

Salvard also happens to be a very reliable producer of good wines. I don't quite know how they manage it, but even in 2003, when virtually everything else was flabby and flat, this wine was palatable. I've had two other 2006 vintage Loire Valley wines to date and thought I detected the taint of rot-afflicted fruit in each, so it's good to learn that this one scores again. (Maybe I just selected poorly or the wines I had were handled badly.)

Marcus said...

Congratulations. Your bargain embrace is now at full throttle.

I've had this one. Yummy. My favourite is still the Domaine de Montcy Cuvée Clos des Cendres I posted in April but you could barely get three for the same price.

Well done!

Joe said...

That is a terrific price point - thanks for this.

RougeAndBlanc said...

Neil,
Thanks for recommendation. for under $14 in NYC, it is still a great buy for wine of this quality.

Brooklynguy said...

Steve - that is something really important to me. My favorite producers tend to put out great wine regardless of the overall quality of the vintage. And this is not mass produced stuff - they know how to adapt with the climate each year.

Thanks Marcus. It has to be in full throttle, as my income is no longer a sure thing (only bad part so far of starting a business).

No prob Joe. Do you have access to this in Mont-Royale?

Hi Andrew - my pleasure. They don't have this at Chambers - you might have to come to park slope...

mrfroopy said...

I just had to say I just drank a bottle of 2004 Chidaine Montlouis Choisilles that i got in Paris at the reccomendation of a friend, but can be had here for 23 dollars and its simlply astounding!! I am gonna buy 4 bottles and lay them down.. a real steal.. Burgundy this good would cost 90 dollars a bottle.. youch thats good stuff.

Brooklynguy said...

Hey Mr Froopy - where can it be had here? I don't believe I've seen that cuvee, I love Chidaine also, and they seems to make better wine each year. Thanks for stopping by.

David McDuff said...

Hey Neil,
Theoretically, Chidaine's "Les Choisilles" should be available, along with the rest of Chidaine's portfolio, at Chambers Street. It probably just gets snatched up more quickly than the other cuvees.

On another note, it's good to know I'm not the only person who brushes their teeth with wine!

Joe said...

Hi Neil, yes it is here in Montreal, $15.75 Tax Included. I will hustle and get some tomorrow.

Marcus said...

Finally am trying the 2006 Salvard now... still enough left for me to buy a case, thankfully. And now it's selling for cheaper too. Joe should note it's $15.10 Cdn now with all tax included.

At the same time, I bought the current Henry Pellé Morogues from Menetou-Salon. They are always seem to be so good. Like a fine Sancerre but for only $20.

Brooklynguy said...

Hiya Dok - you're buying a whole case, huh? Glad you like it. I think I went though 7 or 8 bottles between July and November. Good for you for getting your winter whites on. Are you gonna age any of this (not sure if that's recommended) or guzzle it up?