Out of 86 samples (29 were 2007s, 57 were 2008s) we selected 24 Ambassadors – 6 from the 2007 vintage and 18 from the 2008 vintage. 28% success rate. Jim's Loire will be able to release the names of the 2009 Ambassadors early next week after the producers have been notified.
One of the producers, who won't be a 2008 ambassadors, is the normally very good Cooperative of Saint-Cyr, who submitted two samples of 2008 Saumur-Champigny, which appeared to be 50% wine and 50% water. We weren't sure whether they were trying to test the tasting panel or whether they were taking the French government stand on moderation to extremes.
Although probably better than last year, sample preparation was a problem with some promising wines eliminated because the samples were faulty – reduction being a particular problem.
Restaurant Le Bougnat
15 Rue Torricelli, 75017 Paris 17ème
Tel: 01 45 74 33 34