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2015 Chignin Gamay

A. & M. Quenard

2015 Chignin Gamay A. & M. Quenard - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant
Gamay has found a home away from home in the vineyards of Savoie, high on a mountain in the hands of the Quenard family. The chilly Alpine climate and rocky limestone soil of Chignin allow for a unique expression of the grape: lean, juicy, and explosively aromatic, with a salivating minerality that keeps you coming back for more. Unassuming enough to be uncorked for the most trivial of reasons, it radiates a vivid fragrance of smashed raspberries, then briskly and crunchily greets the palate before finishing on a note of powdered stone. Drink it frequently, slightly cool, and with gusto. –Anthony Lynch
Vintage: 2015
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Gamay
Appellation: Vin de Savoie
Country: France
Region: Savoie
Producer: A. & M. Quenard
Winemaker: André & Michel Quenard
Vineyard: 30 years, 2.5 ha
Soil: Steep limestone scree slopes
Farming: Lutte Raisonnée
Alcohol: 12%

More from this Producer or Region

About Savoie

Fifteen or twenty years ago, there was little buzz about the wines of Savoie, the Alpine region hugging the Swiss and Italian borders. In fact, most wines from Savoie were some combination of overcropped, thin, searingly acidic, and painfully rustic; even the best examples rarely made it out of the local mountain resorts, where they were served as an après-ski to wash down many a melty croque-monsieur.

But all that has changed, and today Savoie produces a number of top-quality wines in all styles, from simple thirst-quenchers to wines of substantial gravity. Kermit sought out some of these wines early in his career, having imported the spritzy, mineral whites of Apremont and Chignin in the late 1970s.

With vineyards at the foot of the Alps that occasionally climb to higher elevations, Savoie is defined by its mountain-influenced climate and extremely rocky terrain, with abundant limestone. Thanks to a diversity of indigenous grape varieties, quality-oriented growers with the choicest parcels—steep and well-exposed—can craft anything from crisp, low-alcohol whites from Jacquère to deep, gamey reds from Mondeuse. More serious whites are made from Altesse as well as Bergeron, the local name for Roussanne, which the Romans planted on the slopes of Chignin around the same time as they introduced it to the Rhône Valley.

Savoie’s diversity of styles and distinct sub-regions, from Arbin to Seyssel to the Bugey (technically not a part of Savoie, but included here for convenience) makes it a fascinating region for the thirsty explorer. There is no better place to look for brisk mountain refreshment.

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When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174

From the store floor

2017 Corbières Rosé “Gris de Gris”

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2016 Beaumes-de-Venise Rouge

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$19.00

2016 Kerner

Manni Nössing  Italy  |  Alto Adige  |  Alto Adige – Valle Isarco

$30.00

2015 Pinot Noir

Albert Boxler  France  |  Alsace  |  Alsace

$40.00

Prosecco Superiore Brut

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2016 Tavel Rosé

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2016 Gambellara Classico “El Gian”

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2015 Côtes du Vivarais Rouge

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2015 Vouvray “Le Portail”

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When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174

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