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Salil

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WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Salil » Sat Apr 11, 2009 1:37 am

1996 Château de la Genaiserie Coteaux du Layon 'La Roche' (Loire Valley, France)

This is one of those wines that makes me wonder why I don't drink more from the Loire. Purchased 2 bottles at $18/500 ml bottle from Hart Davis Hart's retail section recently, and this is the first of them.
This has been open since Tuesday and slowly being diminished in the fridge (with a glass or two still left in the bottle) - on a few nights this week I've had a small glass with cheese after dinner, and it's been absolutely delicious while barely budging/showing any change in flavour or intensity. Started with a little bit of volatility and alcohol vapours on the nose when opened, but after a little bit of air on the first night that blew off to show aromas of creme brulee and honey over apricots, apples and pears with a faint stony mineral element sticking out underneath. Very sweet and viscous in the mouth (hardly a surprise with the label also indicating 'Selection de Grain Nobles' in small print) with tons more white fruit flavours covered in honey and caramel and a little bit of cinnamon/nutmeg spice on the back end. Decent acidity underneath all the sweetness that keeps this from feeling too cloying or sweet. Really delicious, and an amazing value. I can only imagine what a noble-sweet wine like this might cost from Germany or Alsace.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Tim York » Sat Apr 11, 2009 6:47 am

Salil Benegal wrote: Decent acidity underneath all the sweetness that keeps this from feeling too cloying or sweet. Really delicious, and an amazing value. I can only imagine what a noble-sweet wine like this might cost from Germany or Alsace.


This acid balance is the outstanding feature of Loire sweeties, though there are lapses with one or two producers in Anjou, Delesvaux springs to mind, whose wines occasionally cloy. The prices from top producers are edging upwards but remain good value, e.g. Foreau offering a Vouvray moelleux 95 for €23,50, Huet Vouvray Clos du Bourg moelleux 07 for €21 or Ch. Pierre Bise (Papin) Coteaux du Layon Chaume 04 for €16 (50cl), all ex cellars.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Rahsaan » Sat Apr 11, 2009 11:15 am

Tim York wrote:Foreau offering a Vouvray moelleux 95 for €23,50, Huet Vouvray Clos du Bourg moelleux 07 for €21 or Ch. Pierre Bise (Papin) Coteaux du Layon Chaume 04 for €16 (50cl), all ex cellars.


Are those current prices? I.E. Foreau is still selling the 95 moelleux? It certainly won't cost that retail in the States.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Tim York » Sat Apr 11, 2009 12:42 pm

Rahsaan wrote:
Are those current prices? I.E. Foreau is still selling the 95 moelleux? It certainly won't cost that retail in the States.


These are prices given in the 2009 edition of RVF's Les Meilleurs Vins de France. Foreau has the practice of offering older vintages out of reserve from time to time. When I was there a few years ago I bought some 1989; I can't recall whether it was listed then or whether he yielded to my pleading.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Ian Sutton » Sat Apr 11, 2009 9:37 pm

We had a wonderful Bonnezeaux this evening and the comment made there was how it (and it's regional neighbours) are so often overlooked for dessert wines. Thus prices remain very low for the potential you get.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Rahsaan » Sat Apr 11, 2009 10:57 pm

Tim York wrote: Foreau has the practice of offering older vintages out of reserve from time to time. When I was there a few years ago I bought some 1989; I can't recall whether it was listed then or whether he yielded to my pleading.


Amazing.

When I was there in 2005, I bought some stuff from the mid-90s. I don't remember if they had 1989s to sell and I thought they were too pricey or if pleading would have been required.
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Salil » Tue Apr 14, 2009 10:20 am

Finished off the last glass remaining in the bottle last night. Absolutely exquisite - tasted like honey infused with mandarin oranges, and still holding very strong after being open a full week.

(Darn it... why do I not buy more of this stuff?)
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Re: WTN: Satisfying the sweet tooth

by Jim Brennan » Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:23 pm

Saw those a few months ago and considered buying them all up, but decided to pass. Sounds like they were very enjoyable... Guess I made a mistake to your benefit. :)

I've had a few '96 chenins from various producers, and the balance on most has been impeccable. If you ever bump into the '96 Pinon Vouvray 1er Trie, I highly recommend it: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=19729&p=168658&hilit=pinon+1er#p168658

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