François Chidaine, 2023 Update

François Chidaine is undeniably one of the most renowned vignerons in the Montlouis-sur-Loire appellation, and arguably one of the best known in the entire Loire Valley. When I head out to the Loire I habitually make a point of stopping off to taste with François or, in recent years, sometimes his daughter Alice.

Travel restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic naturally saw this otherwise regular event in my tasting calendar disappear. As well as just about every other regular tasting event, of course. And while during the course of 2022 I returned several times to the Loire, my re-acquaintance with François’ wines has been rather stuttering.

François Chidaine

The 2022 Salon des Vins de Loire, during which I intended to meet up with François (pictured above) and his team, was cancelled. And the new Salon des Vins de Loire, reinvented as a more low-key event, is a pale shadow of its former self. François Chidaine, like many of the region’s leading vignerons, chose to stay away.

To some extent I don’t blame him.

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