Didier Dagueneau, Sancerre, Le Mont Damne 2010

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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.

94 points Wine Advocate

Chablis-like salted, herbed chicken stock such as seems from my experience to reflect the influence of Kimmeridgian chalk informs Dagueneau’s 2010 Sancerre Monts Damnes, accompanied by bright, luscious lime and grapefruit, all seemingly suffused with crushed stone. As one works this up in the glass the effect is virtually kaleidoscopic, with floral, white truffle, nut oils, and high-toned herbal notes playing against the citrus, chicken stock, and stone, a dynamic that practically shimmers in a zesty, palate staining finish. While sacrificing none of the clarity or energy of the corresponding 2011, this denser, more overtly concentrated elixir has also, on this the eve of its bottling, reached a point of even greater complexity. Look for this beauty to reward for at least 12-15 years. (6/2012)


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