Francois Chidaine is a true champion of the Chenin Blanc grape and touts its ability to produce vibrant wines that age gracefully. Today we have his dry Chenin Blanc Les Bournais on special. It hails from vineyards in the Loire Valley town of Montlouis, which are farmed not only organically but biodynamically as well.
Montlouis is an appellation of 400 hectares located directly across the river from Vouvray. In fact, until it was granted AOC status in 1937, Montlouis wines were produced under the Vouvray appellation. The soils in both places are quite similar: sandy clay on a base of tuffeau. Some say that a slightly higher percentage of sand and pebbles in the Montlouis soils makes the wines a bit leaner than the wines of Vouvray.
On a limestone plateau overlooking the Loire river sits Les Bournais, a vineyard Chidaine refers to as "a magical place". It had been abandoned for some time, but Chidaine was convinced that it was one of the very best sites in Montlouis and planted vines here in 1999. The wine is vinified in stainless steel using only indigenous yeasts then aged in a combination of tank and used demi-muids. Francois Chidaine is at the forefront of natural, low-intervention, winemaking.
Francois Chidaine Montlouis Les Bournais Sec 2018
Shelf Price $44.99
Sale Price $39.97
96 pts Vinous
The 2018 Montlouis Les Bournais is a wine of mind-blowing complexity and nuance. So deep yet also weightless and effortless, Les Bournais dazzles from the very first taste. Dried flowers, lime, mint, lemon confit and tangerine oil hover on the palate in a breathtaking Montlouis endowed with tons of translucence and sheer character. Don't miss it.