Yes…I stole that from Jane Nickles, the Director of Education and Certification of The Society of Wine Educators. But, it couldn’t be more true. Vouvray, made from the grape varietal, Chenin Blanc, is a classic. Chenin Blanc is a phenomenal shape shifter when it comes to wine making. Jancis Robinson, the Undisputed Queen of the Grape, describes Chenin Blanc thusly, “Chenin Blanc is a magical chameleon of a grape, although remarkably few of the thousands of growers who harvest it each year even realize that magic is there”. Chenin Blanc thrives in the Loire Valley, specifically the Anjou-Touraine area, quite possibly the best growing region for this varietal, With that being said, don’t discount the Chenin Blancs grown and produced in South Africa where this grape makes up close to 20% of all plantings in the country.
Now, lets talk about this particular bottle; Champalou Vouvray imported by Kermit Lynch. The wine is remarkable. Extremely food friendly with a pear and mineral nose, backed with a grassy hint in the end. It has a pleasantly crashing acidity, fresh lively lemon flavors and hints of minerality that balance this wine perfectly. Quite honestly, I think this sexy ass wine could turn me into a day drinker if I’m not careful. This latest heat wave here in mid-September has me looking for ways to cool off and try to ignore it, and this temptress Chenin is fitting the bill nicely. When Janis notes this varietal, Chenin Blanc, is a chameleon she means it. This particular producer, Champalou, turns their juice into 6 different wines, ranging in sweetness levels and even making a fantastic sparkling wine from it.
So again, as I have mentioned in my previous posts, step out there and try something new. Chenin Blanc is definitely your friend. Have a very Happy Wine Wednesday!