'Les Dissidents' Candide 2017, 75cl
Domaine de Ventenac is found about 10km north of Carcassonne in the appellation of Cabardes which, because of its location between the Massif Central on one side and the Pyrenees on the other, enjoys a climate which is an interesting mix of Mediterranean and Atlantic influences ensuring ideal conditionsfor growing all sorts of grape varieties.
Maison Ventenac proposes original, unique wines, always remaining true to the same principle : respect for the grape and its organoleptic qualities. All our production benefits from the same focus on quality, from our Pays d’Oc PGI cuvées all the way up to our premium Cabardès PDO wines.
Resolutely militant, and just a little bit of an anarchist, our “Dissidents” and “Païens” ranges express what we believe to be the very soul of Maison Ventenac, without any form of constraint, cultivating our finest plots of land in the most natural way possible, classifying our soils in order to better define them, selecting and creating our wines as we see fit. Here, there is no make-up, just delicate blends concocted in jars of 150 or 500 litres, and in casks of 2,000 litres. These wines are uncompromising, chiselled, precise and direct. An uppercut – but the good sort! One that wakes you up and tells you that not everything is standardised and uniform, but can be unique.
If perhaps you secretely love Chardonnay but are afraid to admit it then Chenin Blanc might just be the grape for you. Chenin Blanc or indeed just Chenin, has been gaining momentum and popularity lately. Chenin Blanc is, like another world-class white grape, Chardonnay, basically neutral in taste, and thus when well-vinified excels in conveying terroir, distinctive qualities that reflect the soil and climate in which the grapes were grown.
The Candide is a beautiful reflection of place and indeed forward thinking people. Expect complex flavours of yellow apple, quince and pear, finishing with honeydew melon and a touch of peach. Medium bodied, not lacking acidity and playing upon that magnificent iconic 'sweet & sour' profile that makes Chenin so very moreish and food friendly. Try it alongside herb infused poulty dishes, smoked salmon, Terrines and Pâte.
"100% Chenin Blanc grown on ‘calcaires blancs lacustres’ (lake limestone). Unfiltered and unfined.
Very slight wet-wool note but overlaid with honey and toast. Surprising intensity on the palate for 12.5%. I thought it would be thin but there’s real presence on the palate and clementine-soaked fruit that fills the mouth. Frisson of acidity shot through the same delicate honey-and-toast element that you can pick up on the nose. Real Chenin personality. Drink 2018 - 2022.
(Tamlyn Curran, Jancis Robinson Purple Pages, May 2018)