Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Thursday, 1 October 2015

#2015Loire – Vouvray (23rd September)

 Les Bidaudières, Vouvray

Apologies that this report on a visit we made to Vouvray on Wednesday 23rd September but rushing about in the Loire has put me behind! Vouvray started for the still wines around Monday 21st September although for the sparkling the starting date was earlier. Vincent Carême, for instance picked his Jeunes Vignes for sparkling Vouvray on 17th September.     

Bunches in Les Bidaudières

Vincent Carême in his Peu Morier vineyard (Vouvray)
checking the maturity of the grapes
Some of the vines are 60 years old

Grapes picked through the vineyard 
squashed to obtain a...

... reading on the mustimeter

After meeting Vincent in his vines we went on to Domaine Champalou where we saw Didier Champalou. "We started this morning picking by machine for our Vouvray sparkling. Next we'll begin picking for our still wines. 

Bernard Fouquet (Domaine des Aubuisières) was our final stop. Bernard: "We started yesterday. Yields are low – 50 hl/ha for sparkling (up to 65hl/ha is alllowed for sparkling). Potential alcohol for the sparkling is between 11.8-12%. Then on the Coteaux I expect it will be between 35-40 hl/ha. Last week we had some 50 mm of rain – Rochecorbon had less than we did."

Bernard, whose domaine is organic, told us about an anti-rot treatment that absorbs the moisture.  

Since our visit a week ago last Wednesday the weather has improved dramatically. On Saturday the wind swung round to the north east and we have had a series of perfect days with the cold quite strong wind drying and concentrating after the deluge of 13th-18th September. 

We plan to take at look at Montlouis and Vouvray tomorrow, so doubtless we shall see some happy producers. If the current forecast doesn't change and is accurate, it may not be wise to wait too long as some showers are forecast from Saturday with heavier rain due from Wednesday.  

As usual with Chenin Blanc considerable variations even within the same row.

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