Vincent Gaudry ~ Sancerre AC 'Cigale' 2016

Vincent Gaudry ~ Sancerre AC 'Cigale' 2016
£24.75 / bottle£282.15 / case (12 bottles)

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Country: France
Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc
Region: Loire Valley
Style: Crisp Light Whites
Wine Types: White Wines
Wine Types: Vegan Wine
Drink: Now to 2023
ABV: 12.5%

Tasting Notes

The story

Vincent Gaudry is a pioneer in sustainability having followed bio-dynamic principles on his relatively small 9 hectare holding since 1993; he acquired bio-dynamic certification in 2004. His desire is to make wines that express the "terroir" which has put him at odds with other producers from time to time.  I like non-conformists willing to go out on a limb and challenge the norm.  Though sometimes his methods are considered unusual, no-one can deny the excellent quality of this wine.

On the label is a picture of a cicada ("Cigale"); I am told that the cicada was commonly found in the vineyards in the winemaker's grandfather’s time but more recently had disappeared as a result of increasing industrialisation on farms, the heavy use of agro-chemicals and intensive mono-culture. Now the cicada is apparently making a tentative return as more farmers consider the sustainability of their methods.

The wine

I still stock the 2104 vintage of this wine. Both are top quality, classic  Sancerre, very drinkable even to someone like me who is not a huge fan of Sauvignon Blanc. The 2016 as you would expect is a little crisper due to its youth.

Light golden in colour, this wine is very similar to the 2014. Initially it gives off subtle Sauvignon Blanc grassy aromas but these fall away to be replaced by light gooseberry and lemon notes and a flinty minerality

On first sip you are struck by the sharp acidity typical of Sauvignon Blanc but this quickly softens to a silky smooth texture. Classic gooseberry and citrus flavours combine with notes of peach and lychees; the mouth is coated with a long flavoursome finish which is very lemony with hints of white flowers.  This wine is developing volume - it is currently medium-bodied - and is beautifully crisp and light; it transported me to a table laden with a seafood platter and fish dishes in a French harbour-side restaurant on a warm, sunny  summer's evening.

Food Pairing

Recommended as an aperitif or for drinking with a range of foods including  goat's cheese (the classic match for Sancerre is Crottin de Chavignol), oysters, other shellfish and fish generally, smoked salmon, foie gras, dried ham, chicken, asparagus, tomato consommé and gazpacho, light omelettes and Japanese dishes such as sushi and sashimi.

Producer's Notes

"This wine has an intense and expressive nose of white flowers with notes of citrus and a smoky tang. It has a fleshy and balanced palate with citrus to the fore supported by a beautiful minerality."

This is a wine of contrasts - relatively full-bodied yet crisp and light, subtle yet full of flavours. Produced bio-dynamically to express the unique terroirs of the region, it is a very classy Sancerre.  Let it transport you to a table laden with a seafood platter and fish dishes in a French harbour-side restaurant on a warm, sunny summer's evening!

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