Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Introducing Benoît Courault

(Both images are clickable and will open a larger format)

Loire >> Anjou…what do I really know about it? I might have tasted some 75 wines during my blessed life as a wine drinker, but I guess Loire failed to give me love at first sight so many years ago. From there, Loire got archived in the bottom left corner under ”so many wines, so little time”.

But why not dip your toes once in a while….

So – Anjou…. which I tend to associate with Marc Angeli, which wines are widely represented on the wines lists of Copenhagen’s best restaurants. They come in many shapes and I kind of like them, when they are matched with food. They do however have a trademark IMHO, which is a rather elastic texture, which feels smooth and friendly on the palate with a rather oily character. This style I often come across in Anjou land – also when I recently tasted another Anjou producer; Didier Chaffardon. I am not always in favour of such a style, as I tend to be rather “Taliban-addicted” to more bright acidity and tall structure.

So now you know where I stand, before we take a bite of the wines from Benoît Courault. I have tasted 3 wines from him and let’s start with the best one.

2009 “Les Guinechiens”

Blend: 100% Chenin Blanc
Soil: Clay with demoted slate and cailloux
Bedrock: Slate
Glass: Many – but Zalto Bourgogne is the one to use.

Benoît Courault…a rising young star - owns 6 ha of land – works organic and plows with horse. That’s what I know. Not much – I know, but let’s see what’s inside.

Adorable nose of elderflower with a touch of honey was the first impression. But it’s not a sweet elderflower thing, as a smoky breeze sets in. Later you get companionship of overripe peaches and some buttery sensations. Taste is blessed with a slim and creamy touch, yet highly intense and filled with lots of nerve - despite you again have this oily “Anjou-structure”. Yet it prevails by being outrageous pure and on the last meters you have that mild wind of smoke coming in, giving an extra dimension. As the above image reflects – this wine reminds me of sunshine and I can almost taste it again from that warm July day. Brilliant wine.

2010 “Le Petit Chemin” (Pétillant Natural)

Blend: 100% Chenin Blanc
Glass: Zalto white wine

For sure some wines are less complex than others. Some are even what we refer to as simple. Simplicity is something I am becoming more attracted to when it’s shaped like for example this wine. It’s the equation of levelling with the wine and surrendering to sheer joy of wine appreciation and tasting with your “soul” and not your brain all the time.

This Pétillant Natural wine holds the juiciest and freshly pressed apples with lovely sensorial honey sweetness. It flirts with cider personality, yet the mousse is far subtler and the style is really delicate and floating. It’s not made of the same material as a Champagne, but for a appetizer, picnic it’s spot on. If you don’t smile when drinking this wine – you have to see a doctor ;-).

2009 “Les Tabeneaux”

Blend 100% Cabernet Franc
Glass: Zalto Bordeaux

This red wine was sadly not so promising ,as the two others. The fruit composition is sort of okay’ish, with a light weighted and delicate style. However the spices goes too far and into a herbal style, which prevents the fruit to show needed purity. I rested it for day 2, where it sadly hadn’t improved.


Voodoo Child said...

Hi Thomas,
According to wine number two, what should the doctor do?

Thomas said...

Hi Ebbe,

The full package - health and mental. Brain surgury if needed. I leave the rest up to you ;-).

Best from,