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Rick’s Pick – Wine of the Week

This post, Rick’s Pick – Wine of the Week, is something new that I am trying to get me back to posting more often. So, let’s begin.

Over the New Year holiday, a new friend brought a bottle of 2020 Champalou Vouvray to the festivities. After my first sip, I knew I had to buy this wine and keep it in my rotation. This post will also be a mini-lesson for those unfamiliar with French wine regions and bottle labels.

A Bit About Vouvray

Rick's Pick - Wine of the Week

Wine from Vouvray is made from the Chenin Blanc grape. Vouvray is an AOC (appellation d’origine contrôlée) or sub-region within the Loire Valley. Like all French wine labels, the bottle lists the region, not the grape. Also of note, there are stringent rules about what grapes may be grown within all AOCs in France. In the case of Vouvray, the only grape permitted is Chenin Blanc. 

The wines of Vouvray can be one of many styles. This includes being made as sparkling wine or still wine. The still wines made range in style, including dry (Sec), Off-dry (Tendre), Sweet (Demi-Sec), or Very Sweet (Moelleux). Sparkling wine styles are dry (Brut) or Sweet (Demi-Sec).

And if this week’s pick is true to the variety, I can see why this area is perfect for Chenin Blanc.

rick's pick wine of the week
None of this delicious Vouvray spilled in the creation of this image.

Rick’s Pick – Wine of the Week:
April 3-9, 2022

Brand: Champalou
AOC: Vouvray  (which is nested within the Touraine AOC in the Middle Loire, which is part of the greater Loire Valley wine region)
Variety: Chenin Blanc
Style: Dry (Sec)

The color of this wine is medium straw. The aromatics are primarily floral. Very soft and pleasing to the nose. The body is medium with a lovely smooth mouthfeel. The approach on the palate is bursting with flavor, including tart apple, lime, and a hint of grapefruit. I realize that the grapefruit may be unusual, but it was enough for me to notice. As the wine reached the mid-palate, the acidity was overflowing and juicy. The apple and lime linger to the finish, as does the mouthwatering acidity. I love this wine, and it is what this is the first Rick’s Pick – Wine of the Week.

Gary had a different take on this wine that must be mentioned. He detected floral notes in both the nose and the palate. The flavors on his palate presented as sweetness even though the wine was dry. As such, he was not a fan, and I got to finish the bottle. I was not mad about that. 

This, of course, happens because we all have different sensory memories. So we will chalk this up to that. But let me be clear. This wine has a place in my rotation and will continue to be enjoyed by me.

Where to buy in Charleston
How to find elsewhere

I bought this wine at Edmund’s Oast Exchange for $24.00 a bottle. And note that this is a Kermit Lynch import. Kermit Lynch is a highly respected importer, and distributors everywhere hope to carry these selections. So this wine should be available almost anywhere. Ask your local wine shop to bring it in. You will not regret it, and neither will they!

That is all for now!


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