Edmond Vatan and The Very Special Episode of saignée

i don’t like okra, andouillette, or sauvignon blanc. It’s childishly pleasin to have foods that we are dead set against, politely pushing food around our plates instead of throwing full scale temper tantrums when we are presented with broccoli or brussells sprouts (why do foods with “br” get such a bad rap?).

Now this isn’t to say that i think sauvignon blanc is some debased grape not worthy of planting anywhere (although certainly there are wines that make that point without any help from me). i can tell the difference between a good one and a bad one (i think, maybe i’m just full of shit) but i still have never found an example i particularly care for, or something i would drink before something else i enjoy. i’ve had plenty of Clos Roche Blanche CRB, which comes pretty close to being atypical enough, i’ve had DeMoor St. Bris that was cool, Cotat brothers wines that i would recommend, and a Dageuneau that gave me pause. But still, as it always should, personal taste wins out and i would rather drink Muscadet any day of the week.

So on sunday, while at Chez VLM, a bottle of Edmond Vatan Clos La Néore Sancerre made it’s way onto the table in that signature Vatan bottle that makes you think of ye olde time tonic, not wine. i I expected, of course, to dislike the wine (the only other time i had drank Vatan was from a year that had botrytis and i couldn’t get a read on the wine). Once i drank it i felt like i had been shaken. Like someone had finally shown me what broccoli (i actually rather like broccoli and always have, but it’s a cliched comparison and lord knows that’s what we bloggers trade in) could be once stripped of the wan steamed version of youth. i poured more (i fucking poured more sauvignon blanc! not quite St. Augustine, but still). VLM even had to chastise for pouring more than my fair share at one point.

It was late enough in the evening that i didn’t even bother to look at the vintage of the wine (i suspect it was somewhere in middle age) but that doesn’t really matter. When i woke up that was the wine i remembered, not the two burgundies i could never afford. Do i like sauvignon blanc now? Or do i simply like Vatan? Or are blanket statements like “i hate sauvignon blanc” simply stupid? Am i learning something here? Is VLM like GI Joe, popping in to tell me the house is on fire and by the way Edmond Vatan is a great winemaker?

~ by Cory Cartwright on October 14, 2010.

6 Responses to “Edmond Vatan and The Very Special Episode of saignée”

  1. These are really excellent. I bought some ’07 from Hi-Time and was told that it was Edmond’s last vintage. Edmond suffered a nearly fatal aneurysm winter 2007. He recovered and now makes the wines together with his daughter Anne. Drank the ’08 last month at RN74 and it was the same stunning Vatan purity and expression.

  2. It was ’05. I thought the Lauer was the WOTN, though.

  3. Jesse, Nady Foucault makes the wines with Anne.

    Cory, Great seeing you.

    I think we may have talked about this before, I don’t care too much for sauvignon in general, but I like Chavignol. I love Vatan and it is the only one I buy. It is sui generis.

  4. yes, I remember that now. I bumped into Nady on the street in Chavignol and he mentioned it; I didn’t realize they were married. Edmond is still involved, no? I guess I like the varietal more than some but the Vatan wines are indeed very special.

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