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[clos des briords]Ollivier “La Pépière” 2004 Muscadet Sèvre & Maine Sur Lie Clos des Briords “Cuvée Vieilles Vignes” (Loire) — Broad and deep. As purely intellectual a vinous exercise as I’ve encountered in some time; all the pleasure to be found from drinking this requires attention and understanding. There’s no way this would ever be appealing to the soif crowd, unless they’re absolutely prepared for the experience. All that said, it’s brilliant wine at the top of its game. (11/16)


[clisson]La Pépière 2009 Muscadet Sèvre & Maine Clisson (Loire) — Two bottles. First is partially oxidized, likely due to cork failure. Second is tentative and restrained; an infinite blank plane of unwillingness. I’m not sure how to judge its future, given these performances. (11/16)

Briords Camembert?

Olliver 2005 Muscadet Sèvre & Maine Sur Lie Clos des Briords “Cuvée Vieilles Vignes” (Loire) — Just at the right point between saline and bones. Strong for eleven year old Muscadet. Delicious. (7/16)

Tony Roches

Lenoir 2001 Chinon “Les Roches” (Loire) — Papillote layers of fine-grained earth, the baritone hum of a pastoral countryside, light grit. A wine you want to chew. And can. (7/16)

Fat of the lamb

[les gras moutons]La Pépière 2014 Muscadet Sèvre & Maine Sur Lie “Les Gras Moutons” (Loire) — Blocks and cubes beginning to weep from the humidity. Extremely approachable, but then this cuvée always is. (5/16)

On the menu

[brin de chèvre]Le Clos du Tue-Bœuf 2010 Touraine “Le Brin de Chèvre” (Loire) — Broad horizons slashed by invisible razors, four-dimensional sand crystals, fractal depths. The complexity unrolls in non-linear ways, and a few degrees of warming reveal a completely different wine than the one whose cork was pulled straight from the fridge. Exciting and fascinating. (5/16)

Early Rush tours

[lemasson]Lemasson “Les Vins Contés” Vin de France “R15” (Loire) — Grapey glou-glou, the taut gamay berries almost dominated by the minority pineau d’aunis (to which I am overly sensitive, and not in a good way, so never mind me). Not so much fun as attention-demanding. (5/16)

Photo sharing

[raffault]Olga Raffault 1979 Chinon Les Picasses (Loire) — Genius wine in the full-throated prime of its life, and in fact so far from being on the downslope that it’s hilarious. Dark, leathery, peppery, and yet heavily-fruited. Kaleidoscopic soul. (5/16)

Still they’re Cazins, identical Cazins…

[cazin]Cazin 2000 Cour-Cheverny “Vendanges Manuelles” (Loire) — Dried pollen, wax, and amber. Like peeling open the pages of an old photo album, with cover sheets sticking together and faded pictures slipping their bonds and tumbling to the floor. (5/16)