Champalou, 2010 Update

On the day I first visited Didier and Catherine Champalou, many years ago now, my schedule for the morning was quite straightforward; first I was set to meet Bernard Fouquet at Domaine des Aubuisières, then I was due to move on to Champalou before taking a break for lunch. Although seemingly well-laid these plans soon proved to be worthless when it dawned on me that I was unable to find Fouquet’s cellars. Having circled the streets of Vouvray several times to no avail (this does seem to be a recurring theme with me in this town), in a final act of desperation the order of play was reversed and I made my way up to the Champalou residence, which lies above the town and which is at least easy to find, and after tasting there it was Catherine (pictured below, in 2010) who then directed me to where Bernard Fouquet was hiding, in the back streets of Vouvray.


There was no need for such assistance during my most recent rendezvous in 2010, however, as I was due to meet both of these leading Vouvray vignerons at the annual Salon des Vins de Loire; nevertheless I decided to maintain the order of tasting just as it had been during that first visit. And so I kicked off this phase of my Vouvray tastings (which have already seen me review the latest releases from Vincent Carême, François Chidaine, Domaine Huet, Jacky Blot and most recently Château Gaudrelle), with Catherine and her daughter Céline, who has recently joined her parents working on the family domaine. Once finished I would move on to taste the wines of Bernard Fouquet. Hopefully without getting lost on the way.

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