Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bougrier Chenin Blanc

I think one word sums up my whole being at the moment, exhausted. As if dividing my time between our new dog, Rooster and spending time with our cat Daisy who is still holed up in the bathroom wasn’t enough. As of today add five 2 day old chicks in the basement. It’s a wonder I have time to drink water let alone wine. But don’t you worry; you know I’ll find a way to get my wine time in. After a brief cool spell, warmer temps are back and that means so are the white wines. Last night we opened a bottle of Bougrier Chenin Blanc 2010.

Peach and citrus aromas lead to a slightly sweet crisp and refreshing white wine. Citrus and honey with a hint of minerality in the finish. Well balance between the acidity and the sugars. I picked this bottle up at Total Wine for $8.99 and will be getting more the next time I’m in Alpharetta.

So just what is minerality and does it truly exist in wines? For me it’s that hint of stone, dirt, chalk or slate. It’s that one characteristic that I can’t quite put my finger on, some may say umami. Most of the time it’s an underlying flavor on the palate or a hint in the nose. I also find it to be more pronounced when there is an absence of fruit. Some wine drinkers and experts dispute its existence claiming grape vines can not pick up minerals from the terroir.

The term minerality is absent from The Oxford Companion to Wine (a wine lover’s bible) but does list the minerals that may be found in wine; iron, calcium, copper, sulfur, to name just a few. The term is also missing from the Wine Aroma Wheel, developed by UC-Davis’ Dr. Ann Noble.

I find this absence interesting considering how many wineries and appellations rely on the importance of geology and soil composition making up the wine’s terroir. After doing some research on the minerality phenomenon, I still have no conclusive evidence as to if it truly exists or not. Since wine descriptors are subjective, I say if you pick up the flavor of stone, chalk or even dirt, it exists for you.  

I think I’m a little brain dead from reading about minerality (it’s not as exciting as one would hope) and taking care of all of the farm animals. There will be much to share in the next few weeks and months.

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