Thursday, March 4, 2010

MFWT Turns Three

MFWT has its third birthday today. It's been a quick three years yet somehow it also seems like I've been at it much longer than that.

On the eve of my bloggiversary, I considered celebrating by opening something above and beyond my usual Wednesday night selection but, given that I was dining alone, I decided against it. In the spirit of ascetic relativism, I opted to save that "special" bottle to share with friends and loved ones and instead popped open an everyday value from, you guessed it, the Loire.

I've been meaning to write-up this wine ever since Jim Budd of Jim's Loire mentioned to me that he'd never seen or heard of it, in spite of having visited with Vincent Ricard at Domaine Ricard on multiple occasions. So, this one's for you, Jim....

Touraine Sauvignon, Domaine de la Potine (Vincent Ricard) 2008
$12. 12.5% alcohol. Composite cork. Importer: Petit Pois, Moorestown, NJ.
Domaine de la Potine is an eight-hectare property situated on hillsides overlooking the Cher, not far from the village of Thésée yet separate and distinct from the main property at Domaine Ricard. This is the only wine produced from la Potine, 100% Sauvignon from 20-25 year-old vines planted in clay and limestone (argilo-calcaire) dominated soils, farmed to yields of about 55 hl/ha. Unlike at Domaine Ricard, where everything is harvested by hand, about 30% of the vines at Potine are machine harvested. To prepare for what the machines can't see, Vincent and his team pass through the portions of the property destined for machine picking about two weeks prior to harvest to remove any rotted or otherwise less than perfect fruit.

The grapes are crushed in a pneumatic press, the must racked off the skins and moved into steel tanks for a three-week fermentation at controlled, relatively cool temperatures, followed by four-to-five months of aging on the fine lees before the wine is bottled. As with all of Vincent's wines, the farming at Potine is organic with the addition of selected biodynamic principles, fermentation is conducted on the ambient yeasts and sulfur use is kept to a bare minimum.

Year in and year out, Potine is a solid value, delivering simple pleasure via direct citrus fruit and fresh-mowed flavors and crisp, refreshing acidity. For those that love their Sauvignons to burst with primary fruit or to serve as an easy-drinking aperitif, the '08 may have been at its peak during the summer and autumn months. It has now grown leaner and shed some of its sweeter-fruited flavors, bending more to a firmer mouthfeel and an herbal, slightly bitter, more table-oriented flavor profile. Last night's bottle was showing grapefruit pith and jalapeno, in particular. Though not quite as ripe or mineral as "Le Petiot," the entry-level Sauvignon from Domaine Ricard proper, at $12 a bottle, "La Potine" delivers a pretty solid expression of Touraine Sauvignon.

So, what would you have opened?

12 comments:

Samantha Dugan said...

Happy Anniversary David. Three years is a long time, I admire your drive and your talent. Oh and the Touraine sounds interesting, not sure I have ever gotten jalapeno before!

Alfonso Cevola said...

Congrats on turning three in blog years.that's 21 in regular years, no?)

I bet that wine would go great with one of our Texas Anchovy and Jalapeno pizza's

TWG said...

Should probably have Champagne followed by Barbera. A double toast to your blog's anniversary and Barbera 2010.

David McDuff said...

Thanks, Sam. Sometimes I question my drive and talent, so it's always good to know someone out there appreciates the musings I'm slinging. As for the jalapeno, mark my words, you'll get it now.

Thanks to you as well, Ace. On the wine blog bell curve, 21 bloggy-dog years sounds about right. That would make your Trail how old, exactly?

TWG,
Champers is initially exactly what I had in mind but that's the one thing my wife, who's been on the road all week, would be disappointed about if I opened it without her. Given my guest post at the Barbera 2010 site today, I think there will definitely need to be some Barbera opening in my not too distant future.

And oh yeah, there were no anchovies or jalapenos involved but I did enjoy the Touraine quite a bit with a dish my wife makes: corn tortillas, black beans, sour cream, cheddar and tomatillo salsa, all layered and baked in casserole form. Dee-lish.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for waiting for me!
P.S. Buttermilk, no sour cream in this one.

David McDuff said...

Thanks for the recipe correction! Bubbles soon....

Joe Manekin said...

Happy Anniversary, David. Will be able to celebrate this Thursday in SF

David McDuff said...

Thanks, Joseph. Looking' forward to it.

Jim Budd said...

Happy anniversary, David, and thaqnks for the mention. Next time I see Vincent I'll have to ask him about Potine – may be he keeps this for his US market?

David McDuff said...

Hi Jim,
I can't say for sure but that is what I suspect... that all of the production from Potine goes to Petit Pois and perhaps one or some of Vincent's other US importers.

RougeAndBlanc said...

Hey David,
Belated Happy Anniversary. Haven't stopped by for a while. Your content is always refreshing to what a joy to read.
Andrew

David McDuff said...

Thanks for the well wishes and kind words, Andrew. Don't be such a stranger!

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