Import Selection: Vouvray, 1988, Georges Meurgey

Vouvray is situated on the north bank of the Loire river just 6 miles north of the town Tours (If you ever find yourself in Tours, be sure to lunch at the Hotel de Bor­deaux. The food is exquisite). Vouvray is considered the best ap­pellation in the Loire Valley. The 3,950 acres that constitute the re­gion are planted exclusively with Chenin Blanc. Evident from the slightly sweet flavor of classic Vouvray, the harvest is late, tradi­tionally between October 10 and November 10. This procedure produces a slightly overripe grape hence the slightly sweet finish.

The first vines of Vouvray date back to the 4th century AD after Saint Martin had become abbot of ­Marmoutier. A story has been told about the donkey who nibbled the leaves of vines, accidentally teaching the value of pruning to yield better fruit.

Jean Claude Boisset, a relative newcomer to the wine business (started in 1961 at the age of 19), has made a name for himself by producing, through ultra-modern methods, highly respectable French Burgundy and Cote Du Rhone. Known for his energy and enthusiasm Boisset has blended modern technology and old time wine making values to produce top quality and consistent wines. Our selection, Georges Meurgey, is the companies Loire Valley label.

Pineau de la Loire (Chenin Blanc) can produce wines of a wide variety of styles. From very full bodied, very long-lived sweet white wines to light, dry, short lived summer sippers. The grape even produces cellar stars which some French would not dream of opening for 25 to 45 years. In fact, there is a story of a 1954 Food and Wine event were a celebrated Sau­terne, Chateau Y’quem (sound Fa­miliar) 1921 was served followed by a Vouvray Clos le Mont 1921 (both over 30 years old at the time) and after considerable discussion the Vouvray came out on top!

Our selection is of the summer sipper type and has a light golden yellow color with brilliant tones. The nose has assertive aroma of Chenin Blanc with an underlay­ment of the one year bottle age. A hint of pears and apple. A rich taste of the variety with well bal­anced acid to minimal sweetness. A wonderful citrus taste comes through in the middle. A classic Vouvray. This wine has a pleasur­able lasting flavor on the palate.

Serve chilled with cream cheese canape as hors’d oeuvres. Would be wonderful with a chicken vero­nique entree.


Cellaring Notes: Best con­sumed in 1990/91. May develop.


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