TN: 2013 Clos Roche Blanche Sauvignon No. 2 (France, Loire Valley, Touraine)

2013 Clos Roche Blanche Sauvignon No. 2 - France, Loire Valley, Touraine (2/20/2015)
Distinct, attractive Sauvignon Blanc perfume, shows some nice, medium depth of flavor, with a good dose of lime acidity on the back end, though with a slightly raw/edgy character, and a touch of minerality coming through on the medium finish. Enjoyable, fresh, lively, I think I’ll drink my remaining couple of bottles earlier rather than later, though I suspect this will last and develop for quite a few years. (89 pts.)

Always a nice drop. Shame it’s becoming scarcer and scarcer.

Thanks for the note Alan - I really enjoy these wines as well. I just learned that 2014 is the last vintage - sad to hear.

Did not know that. Guess I’ll hang on to me remaining 2 bottles for a while and see what they do. Luckily there are plenty of replacement possibilities in future years.

Does anyone know if they’re consolidating their blends or just changing sources? I recently had the 2009 Cab (Franc) and really liked it, only to find out its no longer being made.

They have been gradually retiring for a few years. Noella Morantin has taken over some of their vineyards starting in (I think) 2008. The remainder have been, and are being, parceled out between her and some select others. But Clos Roche Blanche will be no more.

I’m hoping I like the wines from Julien Pineau and/or Laurent Saillard (who are getting the remaining vines) more than I’ve liked the ones from Noella Morantin. Fingers crossed.

And to be fair I should retry the Morantin wines. I gave them a go when they first started showing up here but haven’t revisited. It’s possible they’ve gotten better.

I fell in love with CRB when someone brought the 1997 Sauvignon Blanc to a dinner ages ago. I remember tasting it, writing down the name of the producer and thinking “I hope this doesn’t cost more than $35 or so because I’d really like to buy some of this”. When I saw the pricing ($6.99 back then) I did a double take and started trying everything they made.

I wish someone would put those cab vines to use. Seems like with the same vines and a similarly minimal intervention philosophy it would be hard not to succeed, but that does rely on the new producers copying the minimalist style rather than trying to imprint a signature. Haven’t had the Morantin wines in part because no one seems that impressed.

Agreed. Using them for rose seems like such a waste.

^ terrible. I mean, I appreciate a Loire rose just fine, but it’s never the source of the most serious roses and those vines were producing very, very good, honest red wines. Moreover, I thought the use of the CS made for a very nice product. Should not be in rose.

I’ve reported before that a 1994 or 1995 Còt changed the way I look at wine. I’m hoping that those who are taking over the vines can find a way to match what Catherine and Didier have been able to produce, or the world will be losing a unique treasure.

Okay, I’ll take issue with one thing there. Both the Pascal and Francois Cotat roses are definitely serious wines which reward aging. But in this case - such a waste.

Jay, unfortunately I’ve had neither. I should remedy that I suppose.

I’m going to taste a bottle of Sauvignon No. 2 side by side with a bottle of Morantin Chez Charles when I take delivery of it. It’ll be fun and a little bittersweet, and I’m hoping the NM wines hold up.

My general impression is that none of the successors of CRB really compare well with the old wines.

My distinct impression is that Saillard and Pineau have taken the wines in a very “natty” direction.

Also read how they have pulled out a lot of those vines and replanted with new varieties (for climate change reasons and perhaps others)