Thibaud Boudignon is unquestionably one of the most exciting figures in wine, not just at home in the Loire Valley but anywhere in France. His extraordinary Chenin Blancs are amongst the most mineral-driven wines anywhere, complex and capable of aging for decades. Though a relative newcomer to the industry he is already considered a bit of a legend which speaks to the remarkable quality of his wines.Before the wines even made it stateside there was a huge buzz. Folk were going to France, trying his wines for the first time then leaving rapturious post on instagram. Besides going to the source the only way you could get your hands on these was if someone suitcased them back until he finally settled on importer. While they no longer need to be smuggled in the nature of his operation will make it so that these wines will always be relatively difficult to findBoudignon originally started with a scant 3.5 hectares of vines planted in Anjou and Savanierre, amongst the most lauded chenin locals. He has gradually bought and planted several prime parcels in Savennieres including a parcel called La Vigne Cendrée which borders Baumard's Clos St Yves vineyard (not far from the famous La Roche-aux-Moines vineyard). He has also planted another vineyard, Le Clos de Fremine, just south of Savennieres near the village of La Possonnière with sandy soil and across the road is his main vineyard Clos de la Hutte. All vines are planted from a variety of massale selection coming from some of the best estates of the Loire translating to very small berry size and tiny yields.Since the beginning Thibaud has farmed organically and to this day he does much of the work himself. He is a vigneron in the truest sense, spending the majority of his time in the vines. His light touch in the winery is evident in the wines, as each bottle is a crystal clear snapshot of its vintage. The small winery itself was purpose built by Thibaud and is rather remarkable. It was designed to help Thinaued retain the coiled energy and intense minerality tah all of his wines display. Temperature and humidity regulated by a thermal energy system which is buried below the ground around the winery.In the winery the grapes are whole bunch pressed with no settling and the juice kept cold before starting a long slow fermentation. He vinifies with natural yeasts and ages the wines on lees with minimal SO2 in a mixture of barrels ranging from 300-600 liters. There are hogsheads, cigares, puncheons and small 600 liter foudres from the highly regarded Austrian cooper, Stockinger. Ultimately though, new oak influence is not a part of the style. This results in wines of striking purity, depth and intensity, with each wine clearly reflecting its particular terroir. These are really profound wines with terrific freshness and structure that will only become more profound with a long rest in a cellar.
Earthy , Fruity , Minerally