Pouilly Fumé - Flint - Domaine Didier Dagueneau (Louis-Benjamain Dagueneau) 2007

The domain

Didier Dagueneau created his eponymous estate in 1982 in the commune of Saint-Andelain in Pouilly-Fumé, an appellation in the Loire Valley which produces dry white wines from Sauvignon blanc. The estate's wines are very famous and are among the most sought after in the greater center of the Loire (including Sancerre).

Mr. Dagueneau comes from a family with multigenerational ties to viticulture, and is related to Serge Dagueneau of Domaine Serge Dagueneau et Filles. Despite this, he did not pursue viticulture, preferring to take up sidecar racing.

Although he retired from competition and later took up sled dog racing, he also returned to the Loire to produce wine under his own label. He became Pouilly-Fumé's enfant terrible by strongly and publicly criticizing the practices of his neighboring winemakers, at a time when the region was associated with high yields and accusations of mixing vintages.

Dagueneau's approach led to the revitalization of the image not only of Pouilly-Fumé, but also of Sauvignon Blanc itself, and of Sancerre - the appellation located across the Loire. Dagueneau adopted biodynamics in 1993 (before it really took off elsewhere), worked the land with horses and cut yields sharply.

Dagueneau also used oak barrels to maximize contact with the lees. Dagueneau wines have come to embrace the regional flint character and they are renowned for their ability to age. In 2000, Dagueneau bought vineyards in Sancerre in the Monts Damnés, and also started a side project in the Jurançon in 2002 (Les Jardins de Babylone).

Domaine Dagueneau offers a small selection of wines and is best known for four Pouilly-Fumé offerings. Entry-level Blanc Fumé de Pouilly is a blend of several vineyards, while Buisson-Renard, Pur Sang and Silex are from individual vineyards, as is Asteroid (from ungrafted vines).

In 2008, Didier Dagueneau died in an ultralight plane crash, leaving his son and daughter, Louis-Benjamin and Charlotte, to run the estate. The 2008 and 2009 vintages were considered excellent and a continuation of Dagueneau style and quality. The bottles now bear the name of Louis-Benjamin.

Format : 75 cl

 Country: France

Region: Loire Valley

Cultivation: Biodynamic Agriculture

Grape: Sauvignon Blanc

Tasting: light yellow robe. At the beginning still a bit reductive, needed a little time to open up. Then, the nose is very typical with notes of green asparagus, peppers and cold and stony accents. On the palate, a magnificent balance, a subtle fondant, a light and polished structure, the acidity is deliciously crisp and gives the wine additional freshness and elegance. Huge length with salty minerality. 

Contractual photo on request

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