Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Domaine des Baumard (Clos St. Yves) Savennieres, 1990

As I near and pass my 74th birthday, I intend to bring out some of my more mature bottles just to see what age is all about in wine and life. If I mature as well as this wine has, I will be very happy.

It's a deep old gold color, very mature to the eye. At first, I thought I might have a corked bottle since there is a slight cardboard-like aroma. This fades away, though, and what accompanies it is sheer beauty. Peach pits, nuts, quince and a bouquet of flowers. Maybe what I smell is damp straw, a common descriptor for Savennieres. Chenin Blanc is not always a sweet, smiling peach as many New World producers like to make it. It also has a dour element that underlies and accents its classic beauty. As I have read, Florent Baumard, refuses to use new oak or any other means of softening his wine, and that is for the better, as far as I'm concerned. The more I sniff, the more I like. And the palate: wow! Deep and complex with a rich texture (Rabelais used the word "taffeta" to describe Chenin Blanc, and I think it's appropriate here. What I like best, though, is the after taste. It just refuses to finish.

I may have kept this wine a bit long, thinking, before I removed the paper wrapper, that it was the more prestigious and ageworthy Clos du Papillon. It's not perfect and it may indeed be slightly affected by cork taint, but there is so much to like. It's really hard to quit drinking.

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