Coteaux du Layon 2014

75cl Chateau de la Roulerie Chenin Blanc France > Loire Sweet
The botrytised Chenin grapes are picked by hand. The bouquet gradually reveals its complex notes, at first white floral blossom then, after aeration, white fruits (peaches, pears, quinces) and grapefruit appear. A slight hint of vanilla on the finish, reinforces this fine, sweet wine. Rich, smooth and persistent.

La Roulerie lies in the heart of the Layon region at the top of a hill that dominates the Layon valley. It has south and south-west facing vineyards on clay and siliceous soils made up of schist and phtanite. The Château itself was built at the end of the 19th century, although it is said that the original building was the home of the Chevalier Raoul who gave his name to the property in the 14th century. The region of Anjou is of course best known for its production of sweet white wine, but there are now more and more very fine dry white wines produced from Chenin Blanc.
This historic estate is today owned and managed by Philippe Germain and his wife Marie: their family has history in the region with his brother Thierry at Les Roches Neuves (see earlier entry) in Varrains and his father at Château de Fesles.

 

In 1996, Philippe Germain’s father, Bernard, had bought Château de Fesles along with Château de la Guimonière and Château de la Roulerie from pastry chef Gaston Lenotre, who died at the beginning of 2009. Lenotre had bought these wineries in a fit of enthusiasm in 1991 following the wonderful vintages of 1989 and 1990, which unfortunately were followed by the severely frosted 1991, very mediocre 1992, average 1993 and difficult 1994. Making great sweet wines in the Loire is risky.

 

 

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