Philippe Delesvaux, 2014 Update

Together, Philippe Delesvaux and his wife Catherine run one of the top domaines in Anjou; the vines are tended using certified organic methods with a sprinkling of biodynamics, and this includes a small section of ungrafted Chenin Blanc vines, and the wines are uncompromising in their quality. Their fame perhaps rests on their small range of sweet wines, and rightly so, although they also produce a couple of very appealing dry wines which should not be routinely overlooked. On my most recent meeting with Philippe and Catherine (despite my photographs occasionally showing just one or the other alone, as below, the two work very much as a team and are invariably encountered together) I tasted the latest dry releases, both from the 2012 vintage, as well as one rather bravely vinified sweet cuvée from the same vintage. Then I revisited other wines, old friends if truth be told, from 2011 and 2010.

Philippe Delesvaux

The 2012 Vintage

There are two dry cuvées, the principle difference being that the Feuille d’Or comes from grafted vines, the Authentique from ungrafted vines. In terms of style, I have often found this latter cuvée to tend more towards sec-tendre, or even demi-sec, but that wasn’t the case here; both are very dry in the 2012 vintage. The 2012 Feuille d’Or shows an appealing and supple character, but I enjoyed the tension and firmer frame of the 2012 Authentique just a little more. Surprisingly, despite the latter wines texture and substance, it has no residual sugar this year. It is in such a bright an stony style I would drink it with seafood, whereas the Feuille d’Or has that softer, more autumnal flesh, and it would be much better with dishes featuring chicken or mushrooms, especially with a little cream in the sauce.

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