Chenin blanc is a chameleon. Its expressions range from bone dry to startlingly sweet depending on vintage, terroir, and winemaker. Vouvray is the original source for Chenin Blanc, but the surrounding towns in the central Loire Valley produce excellent examples as well.
Several years ago we spent a few days in the Loire searching for a new source for Chenin Blanc. We enjoy the sweet stuff from time to time, but our main goal was to find a simple, dry, “summer sipper” Chenin.
We don’t always find exactly what we expect when prospecting for new wines; but this time we hit the nail exactly on the head.
Nicolas Paget is an energetic and impassioned young winemaker in Touraine-Azay le Rideau (a neighbor to Vouvray). Like much Loire wine today, Paget’s wines are organic and low-intervention in style. His lineup ranges from red to off-dry white to pet nat, but it’s his dry “Melodie” we’re suggesting today.
Melodie offers Chenin’s pear-like fruit — clean, pure and delightful — in an entirely dry package. It works beautifully with food — think fish tacos or a busy summer salad — but also on its own as a patio aperitif on an August afternoon. Look for floral notes and yellow fruits in the nose, and a smooth mouth of pear, elderflower, and chalk.
Paget Chenin “Melodie” 2018
bottle price: $19
FREE EAST COAST SHIPPING ON ANY 12 BOTTLES