The Saint Véran appellation is quite a recent one, dating back to 1971 and covers just over 700 hectares. The region forms a belt around the appellation of Pouilly-Fuissé and produce only white wines from the Chardonnay grape. The vineyards are split into two separate islands by its close relative Pouilly-Fuissé. Both occupy slopes forming part of the chain of hills to which the Rock of Solutré belongs. This rocky backbone is made of fossil ridden limestone of the Jurassic Age. On the Western side are older rocks covered with grey marls while the gentle sloping eastern side is composed of marly limestone.
The colour is pale yellow gold; the nose develops subtle fruit aromas (peach, pear) or field notes of acacia, honeysuckle and bracken, often with an addition of fresh almond, hazelnut, cinnamon, and honey. On the palate, this white wine is dry and well rounded, mineral and lively. The structure is balanced and fresh. St. Véran wines match well with grilled, poached or fried fish as well as smoked or salted fish. It is also a wonderful match for cheeses from Goats Cheese to Blue Cheese, from Comté to Gruyère.
- 2017 Domaine des ValangesSaint-Véran0.75l White€13.35 €11.03This is the best selling wine in the Domaine des Valanges selection and it was this wine which made their reputation. The estate is located in the heart of the Maconais, near to the historic site of Cluny and west of Macon. The wine comes from various parcels on the 11 hectare estate with 30 year old vines on the slopes around Davayé. The wine is aged only in vat and bottled around Easter time to allow the fresh fruit character of the Chardonnay grapes to have their purest expression. The 2017 vintage was an easy and early one and the grapes reached very good maturity. The wine is very expressive with white pepper, pears and spice n the attack, ripe fruit on the palate, delicious freshness on the finish and lovely balance. This is a super wine offering excellent value for money. Serve with fish, chicken and creamy cheeses.
- 2016 Domaine des ValangesLes Cras Saint-Véran0.75l White€15.50 €12.81Those of you who have already tasted the super St. Vérans from Domaine des Valanges, will enjoy tasting this wine from a small 1 1/2 hectare single vineyard site. The vines face south, south-east and are grown on stony, limestone soils. Vinified for 60% in tanks and 40% in oak barrels and allowed to age for nine months on the lees, only 9,000 bottles of this wine are produced each year. There is lots of perfume and fruit on the nose making the wine immediately inviting with rich Chardonnay notes balanced perfectly with a mineral freshness – clearly the influence of the limestone soil. Quite opulent on the palate, this is a superb Chardonnay combining lovely fruit and finesse. A superior bottling to be served with poached fish, white meats or refined first courses.
- 2016 Domaine des ValangesEn crèches, Hors Classe Saint-Véran0.75l White€15.50 €12.81This domain is going from strength to strength and the family is constantly looking for and finding great parcels of vineyards around the small winegrowing village of Davayé nestled at the foot of the Solutré Rock. New cellars, new vineyards and ambitious winemaking have resulted in some super wines. The “En Crèches” parcel faces south east, is sheltered from the north wind, has clay and fossilized limestone soils and lies at an altitude of 250 metres: a superb microclimate. The Chardonnay vines are over 60 years old and produce a fabulous wine with great minerality and tension. There is depth on the palate with honey, oatmeal, good oak and lots of vivacity. Unfortunately hailstorms in April destroyed much of the 2016 crop so there is less of this wine than usual so it is well worth reserving a few bottles for drinking for the next few years.