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French white wine values tasted in 2004

The selected vibrant bottlings have given me much pleasure for the price. I have purchased them again for personal consumption. Featured values include eight Loire Valley whites.

The below wines were tasted in France, in 2004 (between April and December). The tasting notes are listed by increasing prices, with the following format:

Appellation - producer - plot or brand - variety
Vintage - approximate price - general impression - on nose - on palate - after swallowing

white Gros plant - A.Michel Brégeon

2002 - 3 € - the shy nose speaks redcurrant, little white fruit, apple, and mineral - the palate is dense with the same notes, snappy without any harshness, quickly fading away - the weak aftertaste whispers redcurrant, little white fruit, apple, and mineral - notice that the wine loses a little verve if you do not drink all of it within the first hour

white Bourgogne aligoté - Robert et Raymond Jacob

2002 - 4 € - weak aromas - tiny beads of gaz on the tongue, grapefruit, powerful, more alcohol than fruit (chaptalised), fresh, the wine fades away quickly, flows easily, and asks for more

white Côtes du rhône - Domaine Roger Perrin - Prestige

2003 - 5 € - on the palate: fruit, alcohol heat, freshness - the persistence is long, with almond and apricot

Muscadet-de-sèvre-et-maine-sur-lie wine labelwhite Muscadet de sèvre et maine sur lie - Marc Ollivier - Domaine de la Pépière - Eden

2000 - 5 € - no fruit - a weak nose - on the palate: onctuous, tiny beads of gaz on the tongue, hazelnut, fresh but less so that other Muscadets (gained some magnitude since last year)

white Muscadet de sèvre et maine sur lie - Marc Ollivier - Domaine de la Pépière - Clos des Cormerais - Cuvée Vieilles Vignes - Vin élevé en fûts de chêne

1999 - 5 € - a finely balanced winemaking - fruit dominates the nose, with a note of toffee - very intense on the palate, velvety, toffee, grapefruit, fresh, pure

white Muscadet de sèvre et maine sur lie - A.Michel Brégeon - Liger d'Or

1997 - 7 € - the wine reminds of a 15-year-old Chablis or of a 30-year-old Vouvray Demi-Sec, yet it shows less alcohol - the nose shows grapefruit, apple, mushroom and tropical fruit - onctuous, with an intensity of taste, dries the taste buds, apple

Vouvray wine labelwhite Vouvray - Yannick Lemaire - Lemaire Fournier - Sec [en fait tendre : 9 g/l de sucre résiduel]

2002 - 7 € - In the spring and in the summer : a nose typical of good Vouvray, sanwich loaf, very mature pear, minerally - tiny beads of gaz on the tongue, intense, peach, pear, broad but not heavy, more alcohol than density - a long aftertaste of apricot, pear skin, alcohol burn
- Since then one bottle out of two is unpleasant : with gaz beads and sour taste dominating

Cheverny wine labelwhite Cheverny - Hervé Villemade - Domaine du Moulin - La Bodice

2002 - 7 € - a nose of white fruit, acacia, oak cask - onctuous, cask, balanced and lively

white Cheverny - Hervé Villemade - La Crope - (fûts)

2001 - 7 € - a nose of toffee and cool fruit - onctuous, almond, toffee, cool fruit, fresh - vanilla (same tasting notes on Day 1 and Day 2)

white Vouvray - Yannick Lemaire - Lemaire Fournier - La Coudraie [10 g/l de sucre résiduel]

2002 - 12 € - akin to the Sec but more intense and more refined - a quiet nose - the palate is intense, onctuous, broad, fresh, fruit dominates, meat(!) and alcohol, a hint of bitterness - hazelnut, dries the tongue, alcohol (keep a few bottles until 2010)


This article is completed by a primer on organizing wine tasting parties.

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