This is the best value Methode Traditionelle Brut sparkling in the world. It is made up of 70% Chenin Blanc with 30% Chardonnay, which is aged for 18 months on lees. There is a lively, fresh and crisp nature to this wine that makes it perfect for casual sipping. But if you try a bit harder you see there is depth of flavour here too. Figs and pears, lees, a hint floral. A dry palate with clean acid and very refreshing. Brut Etoile is perfect for drinking young and fresh.
For more than 100 years this family-owned business has been producing remarkable “Methode Traditionelle” Brut sparkling wines from the Loire. Home base is repurposed limestone quarries which gives them a cellar that maintains a constant temperature and perfect humidity. Their wines are outstanding for both value and quality.
Crémant de Loire
Hand-harvested and aged for one year. These wines are often made from Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc but can also include a range of local varieties. They can range in style from rich and creamy to light, dry and mineral. This is the second biggest producer of Sparkling wine in France and the quality we see in Australia is outstanding. The value is unbelievable.
Can any white wine rival Loire Valley Chenin Blanc for elegance, grace and poise in the cellar? Definitely some Rieslings would give it a run but not much else. Chenin, whether sweet or dry, produces wines with a lovely balance of taut, unrelenting acidity and pillowy soft fruit that sits on top. The best wines, think Savennières, Vouvray and Montlouis, can age for a surprisingly long time (25, 50, 100 years even). Only surprising due to the amazing balance the best producers can find in the wine. Then you get stuck into the stunning sparkling wines that are such great value too and the reds from Cabernet Franc that will make lovers of Burgundy or Bordeaux swoon.
May not be the most popular or the most famous wine grape, but the good examples are seriously good! Lovely, fleshy/flowery apples and pears, a nice mineral – flinty streak, lemon zest and a touch of dough. I have always described good Chenin as feeling pillowy and I stand by that. Round and fluffy mouthfeel but the zesty acid kicks it into shape.
The grape that you can plant anywhere, in any climate and do anything to and it will still taste like an OK wine. When people hit the sweet spot of site, climate, cropping and winemaking, Chardonnay becomes a magical wine that will age gracefully but charm you at any age. Chardonnays can range from cool-climate lean and citrusy to warmer climate tropical and overt. Oak and lees can add flavouring as can malolactic fermentation.