I’m a sucker for a good story, and this wine was made on an estate that housed an abbey in 804. I like that kind of pointless detail, the idea that monks were busy making wine from the same soil that I’m enjoying wine from now.
I don’t see much Clairette, it’s not an easy grape to make a good wine from, and much of the production goes to make Vermouth, the Martini Extra Dry of my mother’s generation. Martini and lemonade was the first drink I ordered in a pub, mostly because I was surprised that the bloke behind the bar was actually going to serve me and I panicked and it was the first thing that came into my head. Future panics led to me be mocked by a waiter for ordering Campari and soda. I have not yet asked for a gin and Dubonnet, but I’m sure under the right stress conditions it could happen. I digress.
This La Croix Chaptal Clairette Blanche from Aldeby Wines was good. It had a non standard flavour, some sort of lemon curd on toast kind of thing which was fruity and flavourful, but hard to pin down. Perhaps that’s why the label writer had claimed that this is “a full bodied white wine which will surprise you with fish in sauce”. I love the notion of opening the bottle and a little dish of fish in sauce popping out with the cork to surprise me, but this didn’t happen. It did however go very well with a seafood risotto with spinach. I can’t say I felt peculiarly surprised though.
I would buy it again.