(by peter & susie)
When we did our tasting course last weekend for Master of Wine students, one participant later tweeted: “Your tutors raiding their cellar; that’s dedication”.
There were indeed several wines we featured over the course of that weekend which had come from our own cellar.
We needed high quality classics, benchmarks of their type, often with a bit of bottle maturity. So the metaphorical cellar it was.
We must acknowledge, however, that it did lead to a small amount of marital disharmony. Especially given that Susie had to be physically restrained at one point from withdrawing a certain wine (Bernard Faurie’s majestic Hermitage 1995) because she loves it so much.
But it was good to know at least that the wines were indeed appreciated. And, to our minds, one of the stars of the three-day show was this perfumed, succulent dry white from Château Doisy-Daëne. A wine that we will most certainly be putting down in our cellar.
This property, located in the Barsac sub-region of Sauternes, is of course best known for its famous sweet wines, including its ultra-rich “L’Extravagant”.
It’s also been in the news recently, with its 2009 vintage being rated on a par with Château d’Yquem by the American critic Robert Parker.
But its little-known dry white is an absolute gem.
It’s made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc grapes, and was initially conceived as a project to use up the grapes harvested early and without noble rot, and thus not much use for the sweet wine.
But winemaker Denis Dubourdieu is well known for his deft touch with whites, and this nutty, creamy-textured, mineral-scented, grapefruit-packed white is quite the opposite of an after-thought.
Although it’s not cheap, it’s great value at the price.
Good quality oaked dry white Bordeaux is such an under-appreciated style, and can often match good Burgundy at its own game. This one is much grassier and vividly citric than your typical Burgundian offering, though, so match it with dishes that need more of a tangy, herby partner.
Sensational stuff. For us, it rates at 8.5/10.