Tania and Vincent Careme inherited 5 hectares of vines in prime Vouvray terroir and they have since bought more vineyards and rented some as well to give a total of around 15 hectares. The wine is matured in oak casks, the majority of which are old (up to 10 years old). The grapes are picked by hand and pressed gently and then the natural yeasts are allowed to do their work. No sulphur is added at any stage. The Ancestrale is a natural sparkling wine made in the pétillant style. The fermentation starts in tank and the wine is then bottled while still fermenting and finishes in the bottle without the addition of any sugar and using only the natural yeasts.
While ‘natural’ wine is often sneered at, there are some of them that are truly incredible wines. This wine falls into the incredible category. So fresh, the CO2 is obviously keeping this wine in pristine condition. It is quite appley and pear fruit, chalk and minerals, savoury, nutty and caramel. The wine is so clean and refreshing on the palate and very complex. It is a great wine that happens to be made without sulphur. A must try for lovers of Vouvray.
The ‘tuffeau’ chalk covered with clay soils and areas of flint and sand soils of Vouvray are where some of the world’s best Chenin Blanc takes root. The mineral, flinty core gives way to lovely pear, honeysuckle and lime zest notes. The best Vouvray wines are some of the best wines in the world.
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 mouth feel but the zesty acid kicks it into shape.