Savennieres 'Clos De La Coulee De Serrant', 1999


Dry White, Loire Valley, France


Light honey and hay notes, spice, preserved fruits, truffles, crème caramel and gooseberries, reminiscent of a dessert wine combined with a dry white wine. Structured, textured, fresh acidity and dry, clean and long finish.


96 points


Shellfish, grilled swordfish, lobster gazpacho, grilled chicken


Nicolas Joly has always joked, "It took all my diplomatic skills to explain to my wife, who is the daughter of a German diplomat that she'd gone to bed with a banker and awakened with a hippy farmer." Joly, guru of biodynamic grape farming in France, is a Columbia MBA alumnus, who left a high-flying finance job to help his mother run the family business – that of making Loire Valley wines. He enrolled in a winemaking course in Bordeaux and began to make wines thereafter. But it was on a skiing holiday when he came across a book by Rudolf Steiner, the German advocate of biodynamics. He then adopted the principles of biodynamics.

Joly is quick to point out to likely followers that biodynamics as a practice is as old as agriculture. It assumes that one is at the mercy of nature and has a scientific and logical basis. Biodynamics places emphasis on the individual character of vineyard sites and how to draw out the best from the vine. Healthy, well-structured soil that is rich in humus, high in biological activity and sustainable, is one goal. Grapevines are pruned, treated with natural preparations and grapes are picked according to a seasonal 'astro' calendar.

In the cellar, nothing is done to the wine except a light filtering. Essentially, what all this means is that a great deal of attention is paid to appropriate climate, soil structure and water for grape growing. This approach of non-interventionist winemaking is indeed a hallmark of exceptional quality wines produced biodynamically or otherwise.

I tasted a 20-year-old bottle, and for a white wine, it was still lively, fruity, and youthful. Is it because of the biodynamic methods used? I can’t say for certain but I can tell that one of the best wines from the Loire Valley, is that of Nicolas Joly's.

Other Wines

All wines including Coulée de Serrant are made from the Chenin Blanc variety.

- Savennières Clos Becherelle

- Clos de la Bergerie Savnnières 'Roche aux Moines'

- Savennières 'Les Clos Sacrés'

- Savennières Le Vieux Clos

- Savennières Moëlleux (sweet version)

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