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Château de Brézé has a long and storied history, first being mentioned in texts in 1068, lauded by King René of Anjou in the 15th century and served at all the royal courts. In 1957, when the AOC of Saumur Champigny was established, the owner of Château de Brézé refused to be part of the appellation, saying that his estate's vineyards were the best and deserved an appellation all their own. And he was probably right. Unfortunately, the wines from those exceptional vineyards were terrible. Lucky for us, the winery sold in 2009 to Le Comte de Colbert, who recruited Arnaud Lambert from nearby Domaine de Saint Just to make the wine. He changed the vineyards over to organic farming and began producing truly stellar wines worthy of their source. The 2012 Château de Brézé Clos David is all estate-grown Chenin Blanc raised in stainless steel to preserve freshness. It has the slightly-oxidized note of a great White Burgundy and a lovely richness that allows it to pair with a variety of foods.

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Thursday
Feb162006

How About Moulis?

When looking for great wines from Bordeaux we often think of the bigger names and overlook other appellations by fear of the unknown. Well, fear no more: Moulis is here to save the day. The smallest appellation in the Médoc (surface wise) with only 600 hectares, which represent 4% of the region, offers wines of high standards as the 1975 Ch. Poujeaux ($79.99) can attest. This wine offers delicate red fruit on the nose. The wine has fresh and still lively sweet slightly red berry fruit on the palate. WOW!!! You want all wines to achieve this with age. It was served with the cheese course at the Cru Bourgeois Exceptionnel diner K&L organized at the University Club, and it was the best paring of the night. We also had 2003 Ch. Poujeaux (Pre-Arrival $22.99). It was a great vintage, the warmest ever recorded, and this wine shows you the best of 2003. Tones of fruit in the glass: raspberry, cassis, red cherry, a bit of spice as well as some smoke. It has good structure and a very long finish. Another hidden gem of the vintage is 2003 Ch. Chasse-Spleen ($25.99). A more traditional style, the nose was fairly closed. Slightly rustic touch, showing fresh berries, cherries and spices. Will keep for a good ten years. Two other good buys are 2002 Ch. Potensac ($17.99) and 2001 Les Ormes the Pez ($24.99). The Potensac, owned by the Delon family (Léoville-Las-Cases), is still quite young. Showing black currants, dark berries, earthy tannins and good acidity, it will be drinkable after 2006. Les Ormes de Pez, St-Estèphe, is straightforward. Good dark fruit with a bit of spice. Firm structure that still needs more time but opens up well with decanting. —Alexandre Brisoux

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