Domaine du Nozay, Sancerre, Les Clos du Nozay, blanc 2018
Clos du Nozay comprises the heart of the domaine’s oldest vines—47 years old as of the 2018 vintage—planted on a 45-degree south-facing incline and surrounded by stone walls and hedges. Grapes are harvested by hand, slowly crushed via pneumatic press, and allowed to ferment spontaneously in the jars in which they will age; sulfur is added only prior to bottling, which is done without fining or sterile filtration. Furthermore, Cyril allows full malolactic fermentation to occur, which further distances Clos du Nozay from the straitjacketed linearity of most Sancerre. The palate expresses energy not through rapier-like acidity but through an overall sense of vivacity, and the wine’s formidable minerality suffuses rather than spars with the fruit; this is a Sancerre that has learned to meditate. Cyril produced barely more than 1,000 bottles of the 2018 Clos du Nozay, [there is] a mere 50 cases for the US market. For serving purpose, this will show its best at cellar rather than fridge temperature, and we expect it to develop and improve in bottle for at least half a decade.