From: Loire Valley, France
Varietal: Sauvignon Blanc
Taste: On the nose, this exquisite wine greets you with vibrant citrus aromas, predominantly lemon and grapefruit, intermingled with subtle hints of green apple and a mineral undercurrent of flint and wet stone. To attempt to say this concisely, this wine is about beautifully balanced citrus and rounded fruit layered over a rocky core with impressive tension. Upon tasting, there is a balance between its lively acidity and the richness of its fruit flavors. The palate displays layers of white peach complemented by zesty citrus; its texture is elegant and smooth, and its finish is long, mineral, and thrilling.
Pairing: The wine's bright acidity and citrus notes beautifully complement the delicate flavors of fish and shellfish. Think grilled or baked white fish, like cod or sea bass, and a perfect match for oysters or clams because of its minerality. Because this wine has so much texture, it’s an excellent match for seafood that carries more weight, say salmon or tuna. Also, Pouilly-Fumé pairs well with poultry and light meat dishes, like roast chicken or turkey, particularly when prepared with herbs like thyme or rosemary.
Of course, we couldn’t forget to mention the greens! This lovely wine complements green salads, especially those featuring goat cheese (baked over crostini or fresh), arugula, or asparagus. It also works well with light pasta and risotto dishes, particularly those with a lemony or herby profile. Are you wanting something spicy? This lovely white wine’s profile doesn’t skew grassy or lean and easily pairs with mildly spiced Thai, Vietnamese, or Sri Lankan cuisine— just like the recipe we’re sharing below.
Kukul Mas Maluwa (Sri Lankan Chicken Curry)
By Samantha Seneviratne
About. Domaine Tabordet, in the heart of France's Loire Valley, epitomizes the evolution of a family-run winery alongside the rich history of the Pouilly-Fumé appellation. The estate's journey began in the 1960s when Raymond Tabordet, a visionary in viticulture, acquired 4.5 hectares of vines in the Sancerre appellation, situated in the quaint village of Verdigny. This initial venture laid the foundation for Domain Tabordet.
The 1980s marked a significant expansion for Domaine Tabordet, as Raymond's sons, Yvon and Pascal, joined forces with their father. Embracing the family legacy, they ventured into the Pouilly-Fumé appellation, bringing new dimensions to the estate's wine portfolio. This expansion was geographical and a blend of tradition and modernity, ensuring the estate's wines reflected the unique terroir of both Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé.
Pouilly-Fumé's heritage, deeply rooted in the 5th century Roman viticulture, achieved formal recognition in 1937 as an Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (AOC). The appellation is renowned for its 100% Sauvignon Blanc wines, distinguished by smoky, flinty aromas – a signature trait derived from the high silex (flint) concentration in its soils. Domaine Tabordet, through its meticulous farming and vinification approaches, has successfully captured the essence of these unique terroir characteristics in its wines.
The generational shift continued in 2012 with Marius, Pascal's son, and Gaël, Yvon's son, joining the estate. Their arrival heralded a new era of innovation and environmental stewardship. Marius, in particular, championed the transition to certified organic viticulture, focusing on natural vineyard management and vinification processes to best express the diverse terroirs. Gaël, managing the technical aspects, ensured the precision and care in vineyard practices, from harvesting to pruning.
Today, the estate, guided by Pascal, Marius, and Gaël, encompasses 21 hectares – 16 in Pouilly-Fumé and 5 in Sancerre. Their collective vision has led to adopting new techniques and growing methods, like plant-based teas and SO2-free vinifications. The 2021 vintage marked a milestone as the first to be certified organic, and the introduction of biodynamic practices further underscores their commitment to nurturing the ecosystem.
This region is characterized by a temperate climate, with nuances influenced by its proximity to the Loire River. The river acts as a climate moderator, helping to temper extremes in temperature, which is beneficial for the growth and ripening of Sauvignon Blanc grapes. Summers are generally warm but not excessively hot, allowing for gradual ripening, while the cooler nights help preserve the grapes' acidity and aromatic compounds. Additionally, the region often experiences sunny days and adequate rainfall, creating an ideal balance for vine health and fruit development. This combination of climatic factors produces wines with pronounced aromatics, crisp acidity, and distinct minerality.
Domaine Tabordet's philosophy extends to every aspect of their winemaking. From enriching the soil with high-quality composts to adopting thoughtful pruning techniques and plant-based treatments, they ensure the health and balance of the soil, plants, and environment. Their approach to harvesting and vinification is equally thoughtful. Depending on the cuvée, they employ manual or mechanical harvesting, avoid sulphur and other additives in vinification, and rely on indigenous yeasts unique to each terroir.
The estate produces 12 cuvées, including four estate cuvées and eight single-vineyard cuvées. Each cuvée is distinct, vinified in various tanks – stainless steel, wood, and sandstone – and may undergo different aging and filtration processes. Their dedication to natural processes and minimal intervention allows the unique character of each terroir to shine through in every bottle.
'Les Calcis' originates from a specific vineyard site within the Domaine Tabordet estate in the Pouilly-Fumé appellation. This appellation is situated along the Loire River. It is known for its unique terroir, particularly the soil composition with a high silex (flint) and limestone concentration, known as "calcis." These soil types are instrumental in imparting the wine with its notable minerality and flinty notes, characteristic of Pouilly-Fumé wines.
Once harvested, the grapes undergo careful sorting and gentle pressing to extract the juice. Fermentation uses indigenous yeasts, which are naturally present on the grape skins. This approach allows for a more authentic expression of the vineyard's unique characteristics in the wine. The fermentation process is closely monitored and conducted at controlled temperatures to preserve the delicate aromas and flavors of the Sauvignon Blanc.
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