Didier Dagueneau, Sancerre, Le Mont Damne 2008
With the exception of Asteroïde, which comes from a mere ten rows of vines, Le Mont Damnés is the rarest of Dagueneau's Loire wines. Finding enough quantity for an offer is almost impossible.
For years, Didier dreamed of making wine from this vineyard located in Chavignol, probably the most prestigious in the upper Loire valley. His dear friend and mentor, Edmund Vatan, provided the inspiration, and finally in the late 1990s, he had a line on a small, 1/2 hectare parcel in the heart of the vineyard. He bought it and then fought with both the local and AOC authorities for a couple years and finally was granted in 2000 with the rights to plant a small portion of the vineyard each year. Just 156 bottles imported to the west coast, this wine already shows the full potential of this vineyard. Though the vines are young, there is excellent, tense, sappy structure that can only mean a great vineyard sight. The length of this wine seems to be eternal. A chalky, but almost creamy texture pervades the mouth, with aromatics showing citrus, melon and pear.
93 points Wine Advocate
White peach, gooseberry, grapefruit, chalk dust, and saline, alkaline intimations of ocean breeze in the nose of Dagueneau’s 2008 Sancerre Monts Damnes usher in a palate strikingly combining a silken texture with clarity and brightness, palpable extract-richness with lift. This positively billows into a non-stop finish with bittersweet, musky floral essences (iris, narcissus) adding to a shimmering interactive complexity of fruit, herb, and mineral nuances. A future classic, it should, I suspect (absent a track record, granted), be worth following for a dozen or more years. (DS) (8/2010)