TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

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Aleks V
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TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#1 Post by Aleks V »

I’ve really gotten into Loire wines over the past year or so, and many thanks to this board and Rajat Parr’s book for great recommendations. I’ve generally appreciated the variety and great QPR of the region.

So, some background on the notes below, we recently had our 2nd child, so while my wife was happy to be drinking wine again, we seldom wanted more than 1 glass a night. Fortunately we were able to find a few 375s to drink, and once the baby was over a month old we started drinking 750s over 2-3 nights. Apologies in a few spots where the tasting notes are abrupt - I was often interrupted by a screaming baby :). My estimated drinking windows are educated guesses, I’m a newbie to region so please go easy on me!


  • 2019 François Chidaine Sauvignon Touraine - France, Loire Valley, Touraine (2/17/2021)
    Very light straw with a green tinge in terms of color. On the nose, this is definitely an AFWE style SB - it’s not overly fruity and grassy the way some new world SBs taste, rather it’s almost like a still champagne - very minerally, dry, flinty, and having notes of green apple, biscuit, white peach, flint, and chalk. Striking acidity on the palate and super dry.

    Really liked this wine and at $15, it’s hard to beat for a daily drinker. Great with food, particularly sushi. Will certainly buy again. (90 pts.)
  • 2018 La Grange Tiphaine Montlouis-sur-Loire Clef de Sol - France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Montlouis-sur-Loire (2/11/2021)
    Really nice chenin blanc. Light carbonation and very typical chenin color. On the nose is lanolin, green apples, pear, and a bit of limestone / chalk Palate has a similarly lanolin/ waxiness, but leans more towards stone fruit vs apple and has a note of black tea and chaik. The carbonation is barely noticeable, just enough to give this a nice effervescence. Doesn’t strike me as off dry either, I didn’t notice any real sweetness here. Has plenty of acidity that made this a real pleasure to eat with fondue and gave the wine a nice tension. Very pleasant and excellent QPR at $27. (91 pts.)
  • 2018 Domaine Bernard Baudry Chinon Le Domaine - France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Chinon (2/3/2021)
    Decent, but a little bit more fruit intensity and less acid intensity than I would prefer or is typical of Baudry. Was red fruit heavy, but a bit cloying and just seemed slightly off balance. Perhaps a product of the warm vintage. (88 pts.)
  • 2008 Domaine Huet Vouvray Sec Le Haut-Lieu - France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Vouvray (1/19/2021)
    From a 375.

    Strong nose of lanolin, honey, candied pineapple, old antique store, and a touch of black tea. The palate is intense, with a distinct salinity, and notes of key lime, candied pineapple, nectarine, rust, and black tea. High acidity drives the tension of the wine and is pleasantly noticeable on the finish. Compared to the 2010 Le Mont, which I had a couple of days ago, this definitely feels like a much older wine and has much more bracing acidity. That said, this should still be tasty for a few more years, wouldn’t be in any rush to drink, especially a 750. (93 pts.)
  • 2010 Domaine Huet Vouvray Sec Le Mont - France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Vouvray (1/10/2021)
    From a 375.

    Cork intact, wine in good shape, a pale straw color. On the nose, candied pineapple, beeswax, minerality, and Meyer lemon. On the palate the wine came across with similar flavors to the nose, but a strong concentration of flavor which was quite nice. Wine was medium bodied with medium acidity and a slightly minerally mouthfeel. Would have expected more acidity to be honest. Overall, very nicely balanced wine, though a couple more years of cellar time might help the wine open up even more. (92 pts.)
  • 2004 Olga Raffault Chinon Les Picasses - France, Loire Valley, Touraine, Chinon (1/9/2021)
    From a 375.

    Cork a bit degraded but came out with ah-so. Color was still fairly garnet with only a tiny bit of browning around the edges.

    Wine was pretty dusty, damp leaves/ forest floor, and green tobacco on the nose. Much fruitier on the palate than the nose would suggest with lots of red cherry, bell pepper, and raspberry. Medium acidity, tannins becoming integrated but still very much present (definitely lip smacking). After an hour in the glass (no decanting due to size), acid was a bit more prevalent and some herbs de Provence notes came into play to complement the fruit.

    Between the tannins and primary fruit think this still has plenty of time left, even as 375 and probably even more time with a 750 or 1.5L. The 375 could probably go another 10+ years easy.

    Overall nothing super complicated, but a very nice wine, especially for the price ($15 for 375, bought Dec 2020). (91 pts.)
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Last edited by Aleks V on February 21st, 2021, 8:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#2 Post by Brian Pinci »

Thanks for the tasting notes. I’m very interested in your notes for the Montlouis. You mention carbonation and not as sweet. I will be on the look out for this wine to try.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#3 Post by MikeL238 »

Definitely agree on '04 Olga. $15 for a 375ml of such great juice is a steal! Seems like '18 Baudrys aren't getting positive reviews in general. Ironic since '18 was raved by so many as such a great vintage. Perhaps too young at this stage?
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#4 Post by Julian Marshall »

Thanks for the notes, Aleks, hope the nights are not too bad!

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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#5 Post by Jim Stewart »

Nice notes on your Loire "sampler", Aleks. I too am a fan of Chidaine Touraine Blanc (aka Sauvignon Blanc). Tough to beat as an anytime dry white in most vintages. I would also recommend that you sample some of Chidaine Montlouis Chenin Blanc. My personal favorite is "Les Tuffeaux" which is off dry / demi-sec. There have been some issues with premature oxidation in some bottles in 2014 and vintages near there, but don't "cancel" these wines because of it. When they are "on" they have been among my favorite wine tasting experiences. Finally, congratulations and good luck with the growing family. Bon Voyage with everything!
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#6 Post by Aleks V »

Brian Pinci wrote: February 21st, 2021, 6:43 pm Thanks for the tasting notes. I’m very interested in your notes for the Montlouis. You mention carbonation and not as sweet. I will be on the look out for this wine to try.
Brian - definitely worth trying. This gets mixed notes on CT but I really liked it and while unusual it’s pretty easy drinking and a great food wine.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#7 Post by Aleks V »

Jim Stewart wrote: February 22nd, 2021, 9:08 am Nice notes on your Loire "sampler", Aleks. I too am a fan of Chidaine Touraine Blanc (aka Sauvignon Blanc). Tough to beat as an anytime dry white in most vintages. I would also recommend that you sample some of Chidaine Montlouis Chenin Blanc. My personal favorite is "Les Tuffeaux" which is off dry / demi-sec. There have been some issues with premature oxidation in some bottles in 2014 and vintages near there, but don't "cancel" these wines because of it. When they are "on" they have been among my favorite wine tasting experiences. Finally, congratulations and good luck with the growing family. Bon Voyage with everything!
Thanks Jim - I’ll have to try a couple of the Chidaine Chenin Blancs for sure. I have a 2005 I got on Winebid that I need to get shipped to me. Do they drink well young or better with some age on them? I ask since MacArthur Beverage in DC has a good selection, though all pretty young.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#8 Post by Ramon C »

The fruit heavy, cloying and less acid by the Baudry Le Grezeaux 2018 really sound like a major departure from past vintages..

I initially passed on the first selling tranche and then got an email deal 3 months later with a much lower pricing from a local merchant who ended up canceling my order saying they ran out of stock with my order still on the queue.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#9 Post by Aleks V »

Ramon C wrote: February 22nd, 2021, 2:35 pm The fruit heavy, cloying and less acid by the Baudry Le Grezeaux 2018 really sound like a major departure from past vintages..

I initially passed on the first selling tranche and then got an email deal 3 months later with a much lower pricing from a local merchant who ended up canceling my order saying they ran out of stock with my order still on the queue.
This was my take on the Baudry Domaine, the Grezeaux, which I have in my cellar, seems to have gotten better CT reviews on that front, though I haven’t tried it yet. Baudry was one of the domaines that first got me into Loire wines so I was a bit bummed by this wine. Wonder if more a product of vintage vs style, it was still 13% abv, so not hot or anything. Just seemed a bit off balance and overly fruity. Maybe cloying was overly harsh and off balance is a better description.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#10 Post by Dan Sch »

The Chidaine montlouis wines are both wonderful and problematic at times... if you are in DC I can recommend the superb wines of Marc Plouzeau at Weygandt. Fantastic cab franc and Chenin at many levels. The Silice Chenin and Roches St Paul are my two favorites. In general, Loire at Weygandt is a very very good place to be! I am a block away if you care to have a taste of something!
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#11 Post by Howard Cooper »

Congratulations on the birth of your second child.
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#12 Post by Markus S »

Cool: if you find "poopy notes", it might not be just the wines. :)
Congrats and have fun!
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Re: TNs: variety of Loire tasting notes with a new baby

#13 Post by Ramon C »

Aleks V wrote: February 22nd, 2021, 4:48 pm
Ramon C wrote: February 22nd, 2021, 2:35 pm The fruit heavy, cloying and less acid by the Baudry Le Grezeaux 2018 really sound like a major departure from past vintages..

I initially passed on the first selling tranche and then got an email deal 3 months later with a much lower pricing from a local merchant who ended up canceling my order saying they ran out of stock with my order still on the queue.
This was my take on the Baudry Domaine, the Grezeaux, which I have in my cellar, seems to have gotten better CT reviews on that front, though I haven’t tried it yet. Baudry was one of the domaines that first got me into Loire wines so I was a bit bummed by this wine. Wonder if more a product of vintage vs style, it was still 13% abv, so not hot or anything. Just seemed a bit off balance and overly fruity. Maybe cloying was overly harsh and off balance is a better description.
My bad. You posted about the Domaine and I had that missed order of Grezeaux still on my mind. Well, fwiw, your take on the 2018 Domaine is also a bit of a departure from the other vintages that I had.
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