I must confess that I am not a great fan of Sauvignon – possibly because there is a lot of very obvious styles of that grape about at the moment. My palate finds that, after the big hit of acidity and grassy flavours, there is little left – until you get the next mouthful, of course. There is also the difficulty of matching foods as the wine can dominate to such an extent that you’re left with the rather limiting suggestion of “…and it’s wonderful with goats’ cheese”. If I’m pushed to make a Sauvignon choice it would be for the more subtle flavours of the French rather than the New World styles but, even so, Sancerre can often disappoint. Therefore, after all that negative comment, it was nice to try, on Thursday, a 100% Sauvignon wine that was excellent – Chateau Doisy Daene Grand Vin Sec 2010, made by Denis Dubourdieu. The vineyards are in Barsac, an area of Bordeaux more famous for its sweet white wine; the chateau’s sweet wine is ranked as a 2nd great growth in the 1855 classification. This wine had the wonderful vibrant quality that is expected but a depth and subtlety of flavours that proclaimed its maturing in oak in addition to stainless steel. We had to verify that here was no Semillon in the blend, such was the balance of freshness and muskiness that made it so attractive. Attractive to look at – clear, light lemon yellow and rich, almost but not quite, honeyed on the nose – this was a great accompaniment to the morning’s oysters and yet was still beautiful the following lunchtime. Excellent, but the WS no longer stock it. Pity.
[Richard: we’ve blogged on this wine before. Similar comments including the suspected presence of semillon.]