2018 Didier Dagueneau Pur Sang
Pouilly Fumé and Sancerre are the global benchmarks for Sauvignon Blanc, and there is no bigger name or more highly regarded producer in the area than Domaine Didier Dagueneau. Now under the guidance of Didier's talented son Louis-Benjamin, the wines still follow his ethos that authentic Pouilly Fumé requires healthy fruit from low yielding, old vines to produce the purest, most intense and vibrantly fresh wine. That's not to say these wines are typical of the appellation. Given the severly low yields and approach to élevage, Dagueneau wines emphasise a creamy texture rather than bracing acidity, and combine mineral flavours with exotic fruits to supreme effect.
Pur Sang (French for thoroughbred) is a superstar in the Dagueaneau cellar, and is widely considered one of the great white wines of the world. It comes from a densely planted, 30 year old vineyard in Saint-Laurent-l’Abbaye called La Folie (the madness), hidden between two parcels of woodland about five kilometres north of Saint-Andelain. The vineyard is named for the local farmers, who thought Didier Dagueneau was mad when he purchased the land which was not a vineyard at the time and full of huge boulders. Back then it was not even registered as part of the Pouilly-Fumé AOC. It turns out that Didier had done his homework; not only was La Folie a historical Pouilly vineyard, but its vein of pure flint and Ludian silica clay (chaille roulées) as well as its gently sloping south/south-east exposure, made it potentially one of Pouilly’s finest.
Sourced from a south-facing single vineyard on flint and clay over chalk, the 2018 Pur Sang is all white flowers and spiced apple pastry. Seemingly effortless and silken, its Sauvignon edges rounded out in barrels. It offers excellent concentration on the mid-palate, a line of acidity acting like a thread and holding the core together like a ball. Delectably textured, with a hint of tannic sensation holding the mouth gently on a lengthy conclusion that's drawn-out and precise. A complex, multifaceted wine. Drink 2022 - 2032.
Rebecca Gibb MW - Vinous