Fall is almost here and this wine, made from a grape you probably never heard of—Romorantin—is an ideal drink for the season.
Lots of “onlys” here: there are only about 48 hectares of Romorantin in total, only in France’s Loire valley, and amounting to only about 119 acres across 30 domaines. One of the best, proprietor François Cazin picks his grapes entirely by hand, uses gravity only (no pumping), wild rather than cultured yeasts, and bottles without filtering. So, when he gets a good crop, he gets great wines, but with so little manipulation, that’s not every year.
Cazin’s white Cheverny is a blend of 70% Sauvignon Blanc and 30% Chardonnay, but the Cour-Cheverny by definition is 100% Romorantin. His 2008 offers lemon, ginger and pear aromas with a crisp, bracing backbone, and it’s a little unctuous like a Viognier with a touch of apple-y sweetness and honey notes.
It ain’t easy to find, but good stores in larger cities will have it or can get it for you. Around 20 bucks and well worth it. Bring on the pumpkins.
Oh, and sorry – but the full name is Francois Cazin Cour Cheverny Vendange Manuelles Le Petit Chambord 2008.