Le Sot de l’Ange Sec Symbole Chenin Blanc
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Region: Loire Valley, France
Viticulture: Certified biodynamic
Grape variety: 100% Chenin Blanc
Saline, stony, chiseled, and exuberant with bright orchard fruit taking more of a backseat. The nose shows minerality, spices, pear, apple, white flowers, and beeswax. The palate shows good acidity with a saline edge. The orchard fruits are cut with mineral and a hit of beeswax.
Song: Nights in White Satin by The Moody Blues
Out of stock
Save 10% when you buy six or more bottles (mix and match)
Show me a fanatic and I’ll show you a success. Truer words could not be said about Quentin Bourse – the “Idiot Angel” of Azay-Le-Rideau. While this is the rough translation of the name of his label, Le Sot de L’Ange, he is a far cry from anything remotely resembling an idiot. Before taking over a friend’s estate just in time for the 2013 vintage, Quentin worked in various fields (wine-related and not) including numerous internships in the surrounding area, with both natural and conventional producers, notably a six-month stage at the famed Vouvray producer, Domaine Huet. These experiences have shaped his winemaking philosophy; his relentless work ethic, innovation, and borderline obsessive perfectionism result in meticulously crafted, serious wines.
Quentin’s estate is certified biodynamic (which is quite rare in Azay-Le-Rideau) and has been for over ten years (even rarer still). His vines cover approximately twelve hectares, though it’s hard to keep up with him as he continuously seeks to expand. In July I was shown new plantings and acquisitions of vines on different parcels, with the classic, local varieties planted to capitalize on the clay and silica soils the region is famous for. In many parcels, white silex stones litter the rows making it look as if the terroir is oozing from the earth. Quentin cuts no corners while working in the vines, doing everything by hand, usually without help, and limits copper sulfur sprayings to 500 grams a year: 75% less than commonly used by other producers in the area. 25 friends help harvest in multiple passes, berry by berry, ensuring that the grapes reach peak maturity.