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2015 Damien Laureau Savennieres le Bel Ouvrage

2015 Damien Laureau Savennieres le Bel Ouvrage

96 DEC

Featured Review
Intense and focused, mainly from schistous soils, giving the wine a dart-like precision. Fermented and aged in barrel (10% new), yet there’s no sense of oakiness nor creamy overtones. Yields of 28hl/ha; concentration of quince and citrus with just enough flesh to add curves. Drinking Window 2019 - 2030 Decanter

Decanter | 96 DEC

Critic Reviews

Intense and focused, mainly from schistous soils, giving the wine a dart-like precision. Fermented and aged in barrel (10% new), yet there’s no sense of oakiness nor creamy overtones. Yields of 28hl/ha; concentration of quince and citrus with just enough flesh to add curves. Drinking Window 2019 - 2030

Decanter | 96 DEC
The 2015 Savennières Le Bel Ouvrage is from two different plots, the Clos Bourcier (on rhyolite) and another one on gray schist. Fermented and aged in newer oak than Les Genêts (new to three years old), this is a deep, ripe and intense Chenin with super ripe fruit flavors and fine mineral flavors from the rocky soils. On the palate, this is a full-bodied intense, piquant and elegant Savennières with ripe, juicy and well-concentrated fruit and fine tannins. The finish is long and aromatic as well as clean and well-structured. It’s a powerful and intense but elegant and persistent Savennières that should be aged for some years. Bottled in August 2017.

Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RP

Wine Details for 2015 Damien Laureau Savennieres le Bel Ouvrage

Type of Wine Loire (Other) : In this underrated French wine region, you will certainly have a chance to taste popular Cabernet Franc blends, known for their emphasized fruity flavors. Other widely cultivated varieties are Gamay, Malbec and Pinot Noir. Some of the most exquisite white wines from Loire contain creamy and refreshing Chardonnay grapes, as well as Chenin Blanc, Melon de Bourgogne, and Sauvignon Blanc.
Varietal Chenin Blanc : With exception to Riesling, no other wine grape can be so vastly exploited viticulturally as the Chenin Blanc grape. The amenable variety can be vinified in a range of styles from lusciously sweet to bone dry; it is susceptible to Botrytis, enabling the production of rich dessert-styled wines and its versatility surpasses even that of Riesling as it can be fashioned into light, honeyed sparkling wines. Though it is cultivated in over twenty countries around the world, the varietal thrives in its native Loire Valley, where a multitude of micro-climates allows the grape to reveal its many different expressions.

Likely to have originated in the Anjou sub-region of Loire, Chenin Blanc has been cultivated in France for over 1300 years. It was first mentioned in official French documents in 845, but its existence is believed to be much older. It has played a major role in the shaping of the Loire winegrowing and making industry, where it has become the backbone of the sparkling, dry, off-dry and sweet wines from Bonnezeaux to Quarts de Chaume to Cremant de Loire to Vouvray and Savennieres.

The Loire and its many tributaries greatly impacts the climate and terroir of the region, creating a large range of micro-climates, all of which promote vine growth and contribute to the wide diversity of the regions wines. They also have a buffer effect, which is crucial notably for the production of rich, sweet wines. From the oceanic climate with mild winters, hot summers, plenty of sunshine and small variations in temperature in Anjou to the hilly sub-region of Samur, where the area is protected from winds blowing from the west, and where the weather variations are more pronounced; Loire’s micro-climates allow the many styles of Chenin Blanc to come to fruition.

The medium sized, yellow-green berries grow in compacted clusters, with vines that are vigorous in medium to fine textured soils. They are adaptable to various types of soils, but prevail in the native terroir of silex, schist, sand and clay, which dominates the natural landscape of the Loire Valley. In the vineyard, growers must keep Chenin Blanc’s naturally high yields in check, allowing flavors to concentrate and its floral bouquet to come through. The variety buds early and ripens late, making it a viticultural hazard as frost can be devastating in cooler regions.

Arguably the best expressions of Chenin Blanc from the Loire are the sweet botrytized wines from the Quarts de Chaume and Bonnezeaux sub-regions, where autumn mists in the Loire’s cool side valleys produce the required conditions for Botrytis Cinerea, otherwise known as noble rot. This unique and magical act of nature allows the grapes to attract a fungus (Botrytis Cinerea) which dehydrates the grapes, leaving them shriveled and raisin-like, resulting in extremely concentrated sugars and flavors. Botrytized Chenin wines are less weighty than their counterparts in Sauternes but are capable of aging as long as the Bordeaux sweet wines, sometimes longer. Good sweet Vouvray requires a decade to hit its peak but can be cellared for more than a century.

The Loire is in possession of 9,700 of the world’s 35,000 hectares under vine. New World offerings have become quite popular and are available from the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Chile and South Africa. South Africa is, in fact, the largest cultivator of Chenin Blanc with over 17,500 hectares under vine. It has become the signature white grape of South Africa, where it is known locally as steen. It has traditionally been used as a blending grape, but in more recent years, vintners have been exploiting Chenin Blanc in single-varietal examples, which are more tropical in nature, with notes of pineapple and papaya, as opposed to the Loire wines which possesses strong floral aromas with flavors of apple and pear.

Country France : Wine is the lifeblood that courses through the country of France, pulsing with vigorous pride and determination. Viticulture is not just a hobby or an occupation in France; it is a passion, a cherished tradition that has been passed down through generations of wine stained hands. Winemaking is a beloved art that has been ingrained in the culture, an aptitude instilled in sons by fathers and the hallmark for which France’s reputation was built, allowing it to be renowned as, arguably, the most important wine producing country in the world.

For centuries, France has been producing wines of superior quality and in much greater quantity than any other country in the world. It boasts some of the most impressive wine regions, coveted vineyards and prestigious wines on earth. The regions of Bordeaux, Burgundy, Rhone, Sauternes and Champagne have become the benchmark, for which others aspire to become. Legendary producers such as Chateaux Margaux, Domaine De La Romanee Conti, Chapoutier, d’Yquem and Dom Perignon are idolized world-wide.

France has stamped its name on nearly every style of wine, from the nectar-like sweet Sauternes to hedonistic Chateauneuf Du Papes classic Bordeaux and Burgundy, to its sparkling dominance in Champagne. Many of the most infamous grape varietals in the world, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay originated in France and are not only beloved, but utilized in the creation of some of the greatest wines on earth. French wine production commands the attention of the wine market year after year. With over 860,000 hectares under vine, and numbers close to 50 million hectoliters of wine produced annually, France dominates the market and sets the standard for not only product quality, but also quantity.

France’s many contributions to the world of wine have been absolutely indispensable. The country is the originator of the term “Premier Cru,” coined the term Terroir (a French term so complex there is no literal translation) and has laid the blueprint for a structured appellation system, which others have implemented in their own countries. French vineyard techniques and winemaking practices are mimicked world-wide. California vintners have been replicating Rhone style wines for decades, South America has adopted the French varietal of Malbec and countries around the world are imitating Burgundian styled Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

With vast diversity in terroir, France is home to some of the most hospitable winegrowing locations on earth. The combination of topography, geology, climate, rainfall and even the amount of sunlight combined with the long historical tradition of winegrowing and making, has allowed the vintners of France to not only hone their skills, but learn from nature to create a product that like the world in which it resides… is very much alive.

Region Loire : Loire Valley has it all. Whether you prefer some of the most famous grape varieties worldwide, or you like to be surprised with secretly brilliant wines, Loire Valley will make you return any time you have a chance. It's unquestionably one of the most diverse, and sometimes unjustly neglected, wine regions in France. Located on the banks of the Loire river, these vineyards are home to some of the most exquisite French wines. And not only does Loire Valley provide us with top-rated wines each year, but it also deserves applause for the number of bottles it produces.
The most prominent grape varieties of Loire are Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, and Melon de Bourgogne. They are undoubtedly the crown jewels of this region, although reds, such as Cabernet Franc, Bourgueil, or Pinot Noir don't fall much behind.

With such exceptional grape varieties, it's impossible to think the Loire wouldn't treat us all with absolutely magnificent wines. It offers a wide palette of crisp and refreshing whites, as well as dry, elegant reds. To feel the magic and the impeccable quality of Loire wines, we recommend Domaine Didier Dagueneau, Foreau Domaine du Clos Naudin, or Domaine Huet of Le Haut Lieu.

Subregion Angers
Appellation Savennieres


Producer Damien Laureau

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