1997 Coteaux du Layon, Moulin Touchais, Loire

1997 Coteaux du Layon, Moulin Touchais, Loire

Product: 19971333527
Prices start from £240.00 per case Buying options
1997 Coteaux du Layon, Moulin Touchais, Loire


One of the most enjoyable and memorable tastings I have been to was the tasting of the wines from the Loire valley’s Moulin Touchais a few weeks ago. After a brief hiatus while available stocks were checked, I am now very pleased to offer you these fascinating and great value wines. Here at Berry Bros & Rudd, we have long championed the great sweet wines of the Loire. From Bonnezeaux to Vouvray and Coteaux du Layon to Quarts de Chaume, there are dozens of producers that stand out but very few that have a history that stretches as far back as that of Moulin Touchais. The ancestors of the estate were producing wine as far back as 1787, over 130 years before Gaston Huet founded perhaps the region’s most famous estate. Since 1990, the estate’s 150 hectares have been presided over by Jean-Marie Touchais, the 8th generation to run the winery, and very little has changed viticulturally in the last century.

Here the belief is that the best sweet wines are produced with traditional methods: low yields, hand harvesting and slow fermentations, aiming for approximately 70-80g/l of residual sugar in the bottle. Following the vintage, the wine is bottled quickly (the following March), having never seen a barrel and then left in the cellar for a decade before release. A labour of love not an economic enterprise. Fortunately for us the previous generations of the estate had the foresight not to sell through every year so we are in a position to offer a fantastic range of vintages from the estate. 

Notes from Richard Kelley MW, one of the UK’s greatest authorities on the Loire. All are drinking now and will continue to offer pleasure for many years to come and in the case of the younger wines, decades to come!
Chris Pollington, Fine Wine Account Manager

Along with 1990 and 1996, the 1997 is one of the best three vintages of the decade. Rich, open and textured nose with some botrytis elements. This
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6 x 75cl bottle
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About this WINE

Vignobles Touchais

Vignobles Touchais

Moulin Touchais dates back to 1787, when the Touchais family first managed the wine estate. Eight generations on, it is still family owned and is amongst the most traditional properties in the Loire Valley. The traditional methods of viticulture are still in place; low-yields, careful harvesting and meticulous winemaking. Although they have been built upon and improved over the years.

Moulin Touchais has one hundred and fifty hectares of vineyard, thirty five of which are dedicated to sweet wines of the Chenin Blanc grape. The harvesting strategy is to pick 20% of the grapes under ripe so they are still fresh and high in natural acidity, and 80% are picked late with the grapes yielding high sugar levels and concentrated flavours. This creates the smooth and elegant style of a Moulin Touchais wine. The fermentation process is spread over several weeks, and the wine is bottled early and cellared for a minimum of ten years before leaving under the Moulin Touchais name.

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Coteaux du Layon

Coteaux du Layon

Coteaux du Layon is a famous Anjou appellation responsible for France’s finest sweet Chenin Blanc wines, grown on ancient schistous rock. Three of its sub-regions – Bonnezeaux, Quarts de Chaume, and Coteaux du Layon Chaume – have graduated to full appellation, such is the consistently fine quality of their wines. Other villages, such as St Aubin-de-Luigné can attach their name to that of Coteaux du Layon.

Depending on the year, the Chenin Blanc fruit is affected (as in Sauternes) by noble rot/botrytis cinerea to a greater or lesser degree, concentrating the sugars and building complexity in the fruit. The grapes are then hand harvested by trie (several passages) before being vinified and aged in French barriques, whilst retaining notable levels of residual sugar.

Domaine du Petit Val and Domaine des Forges are fine sources.

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Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc

Chenin Blanc is an important white grape variety planted in the Anjou-Saumur and Touraine regions of the Loire Valley and the most widely planted varietal grape in South Africa.

In the Loire it produces high quality dry wines in Savenniéres, and luscious sweet, dessert wines in Coteaux du Layon, Bonnezeaux and Quarts de Chaume. In Vouvray and Montlouis it can be dry, medium dry, or sweet, and still or sparkling. Whether dry or sweet, the best Loire Chenin Blancs possess marvellously concentrated rich, honeyed fruit together with refreshingly vibrant acidity. It is Chenin Blanc's high acidity that enable the wines to age so well.

In South Africa Chenin Blanc is easier to grow and is prized for its versatility. It is used as a cheap blending option with Chardonnay, Colombard, and Muscat but also bottled unblended. The best producers keep their yields low and produce impressive mouthfilling wines.

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