Sancerre (W) “En Grands Champs” 2006 – Alphonse Mellot – Alc. 13% (guess €16)
I opened this because Bob’s craving for Sancerre reopened my own appetite. This producer is achieving something of a cult status like the late Didier Dagueneau’s from neighbouring Pouilly-sur-Loire. I can find out nothing about this cuvée but the red one with the same lieu-dit name goes for c. €50 !!
I notice that, like this one, a lot of modern Sancerre from reputable producers is smoother and richer than the tartly invigorating quaffs smelling of grapefruit, gooseberry and sometimes cat’s piss which I drank with sea-food in days gone-by in Parisian brasseries. Objectively these new ones are better wines but they do not satisfy my nostalgia.
C: Pale yellow.
N: Quite subdued with honey touches smoothing down the green fruit flavours.
P: Dry, quite full and round with lively acidity, impressive matter and structure with fair length; grapefruit and gooseberry were there but tamed and smoothly integrated and unlike a lot of Kiwi Sauvignon the aromas did not jump out. So a very nice wine; 15.5/20+.
This is not, IMO, particularly good QPR. The price of Sancerre is creeping upwards and at this level, I find a lot more class and complexity in, say, Vouvray from a good producer. And, if one strikes lucky, there are delicious Touraine Sauvignons for about €6. Top cuvées of Sancerre but not, I guess, this one can, however, age and take on some extra distinction; both Pascal and François Cotat make Sancerre with that potential and I guess the Mellot’s top cuvees (€30+) also have it.