Loire Pinot: Rare and delicious

The most frustrating thing about featuring Loire wines in our monthly Wine Focus is that so many of these tasty wines are limited in quantity and hard to find.

The Touraine wines of Puzelat-Bonhomme, for instance, as I wrote in March 2012, are ultra-limited in production, hand-made wines are both rare and well-done.

Give Dad a Gift He’ll Love & Get Shipping on Us!

Treat Dad to handcrafted wines delivered right to his door. It’s the perfect gift for the hard-to-buy-for Dad.
Special offer: Send three delicious months of wine with The California Wine Club‘s Premier Series and get shipping on us. Just $115. Save $39. Simply use coupon code SHIPFREE15. (More info below!)
Send a Gift

Brothers Thierry and Jean-Marie Puzelat have worked together since 1994 on their family’s wine estate, Le Clos du Tue-Boeuf, in the Touraine region of the Loire, making tiny quantities of traditional Loire wines using organic and biodynamic techniques. Those wines are sold under the Clos du Tue-Boeuf label.

In 2004 they added a “nego├žiant” portfolio – wines made from purchased grapes. They were initially labeled as “Thierry Puzelat.” then “Puzelat-Bonhomme” when Pierre-Olivier Bonhomme joined the company in 2009.

Made in limited quantities, these unusual wines are mineral-driven, subtle and complex, offbeat to be sure, but in a good way. As Thierry Puzelat says on the winery website (translated by Google Translate from the French), “During winemaking, the objective is to support grapes, let them show in the wine that they carry within them. … we can not claim that they appeal to everyone but fans are everywhere.”

I love the wines, but they are difficult to find and, in recent years, seem to be becoming even more elusive. The Puzelat website has gone back to Tue-Boeuf, grimly hinting that Puzelat-Bonhomme has disappeared. Meanwhile U.S. retailers have been largely limited to New York City. I’ve made it my business to try to find at least a few bottles every year. For my tastes, the prize is well worth the quest, and I hope it can continue.

Meanwhile, we’re inviting you to taste any of the wines of the Loire Valley and talk about them on our online forum! Pull a cork and fill a glass, jot down a note about your impressions – it doesn’t have to be fancy, no special skill is required – and come on in to our WineLovers Discussion Group’s Wine Focus, where we’re covering all the wines of the Loire this month.

To join in, simply click over to the WineLovers Discussion Group – you can quickly and easily log in via Facebook if you use it – and use this link to read and participate in the conversation “Wine Focus for June: The Loire!”

 

Today’s Sponsor:

Give Dad a Gift He’ll Love & Get Shipping on Us!

An Unforgettable Gift for Dad from The California Wine ClubTreat Dad to handcrafted wines delivered right to his door. It’s the perfect gift for the hard-to-buy-for Dad.
Special offer: Send three delicious months of wine with The California Wine Club‘s Premier Series and get shipping on us.
Just $115. Save $39.
Simply use coupon code SHIPFREE15.
Send a Gift

The cost of shipping for a 3-month gift in most U.S. states is $39. Shipping on us offer cannot be combined with any other promotion or discount nor applied to previously placed orders. Some restrictions and exclusions may apply. Offer expires June 30, 2015.

1-800-777-4443 www.cawineclub.com

 

Today’s Tasting Report

Puzelat-Bonhomme 2012 Touraine Pinot Noir ($22.99)

Puzelat-BonhommeVery dark ruby, as dark red as fruit juice. Intriguing floral scents of old roses and violets, plus a hint of something like concentrated cherry syrup and a whiff of white pepper on the nose. Consistent on the palate, tart red fruit with complex nuances, good acidity and appropriate tannic astringency, Pinot character and an intriguing hint of stony minerality: dry and long with dark cherries and roses in the finish, a food-friendly 12.5% alcohol. U.S. importer: LDM Wines, NYC, Louis/Dressner Selections. (Tasted twice: Feb. 18, 2015, and Nov. 28, 2014)

FOOD MATCH: This versatile wine goes well with a range of flavors across red and white meat, poultry and cheese, but its subtle complexity calls for interesting, complex flavors. We enjoyed it on the first tasting with a thick mushroom and onion ragù with pistachios over fettuccine. The second tasting, on a cold, wintry night, called for an old-fashioned red-wine-scented beef stew in the style of daube de boeuf de ma grand-mère.

WHEN TO DRINK: I don’t see this as a long-term ager, but there’s no need to hurry to drink it; and given Pinot Noir’s good but unpredictable cellar-worthiness, it could be an interesting experiment to cellar one under good conditions for five years or so, just to see what happens. Don’t count on it for investment value, though!

VALUE: Good Pinot is rarely cheap; by that standard, I’ll grab this fine wine in the lower $20s without asking questions.

WEB LINKS Here is importer Louis/Dressner’s essay on the Puzelats at Clos du Tue-Boeuf. You might also enjoy British wine writer Jamie Goode’s article on his blog, The Wine Anorak.

The Puzelats’ Clos du Tue Boeuf website is here (French only). .

FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
This specific wine is going to be difficult to find. It is produced in tiny quantities and sells out fast. However, You can use this link to find sources and prices for Puzelat’s wines in general on Wine-Searcher.com. To browse the wines of Clos du Tue-Boeuf, click this Wine-Searcher.com link.

Also, the good folks at Chambers Street Wines are my No. 1 source for Puzelat and other interesting, offbeat wines of the Loire. Click this link to contact Chambers Street, and seek their advice on this and similar wines that you’ll enjoy. Click here if you’d like to browse their entire current Loire selection .

 

We hope you’ll “Like” us on Facebook!

If you use Facebook, we’d be delighted to have you “Like” our WineLovers Facebook Page. This way you can get Facebook notifications when there’s a new The 30 Second Wine Advisor issue or a topic of particular interest on the WineLovers Discussion Group (WLDG).

If you’re a Facebook user, you can also now join our forum with a single click! All you need to do is visit the forum and click the “Social Login” link at upper right.

 

Talk About Wine Online

If you have questions, comments or ideas to share about today’s article or wine in general, you’re always welcome to drop by our online WineLovers Discussion Group, the Internet’s first and still the most civil online community. To find our forums, click:

Wine Lovers Discussion Group

Discussions are open for public viewing, but you must register to post. If you’re a Facebook user, you can also now join our forum with a single click! All you need to do is visit the forum and click the “Social Login” link at upper right.

We use only your name and Email to identify you and make no other claim on your Facebook information or privacy. However, if you prefer not to use Facebook, contact me at wine@wineloverspage.com for information about registration.

 

Subscriptions and Administrivia

 
Unsubscribe:

We’re sorry if you must leave us, but simply click the “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of your Email edition to be instantly removed from the mailing list.

Change address:

The quickest and easiest way to change your Email address is simply to register anew, using the link below. If you are keeping your old address but no longer wish to get the Wine Advisor there, click the unsubscribe link below to take it off our list; if you are closing the mailbox, you needn’t take any action, as our system will delete your old address as soon as the mail to your old address starts to “bounce.”

Subscribe to this weekly E-letter (free)

WineLoversPage.com RSS Feed (free):
http://feeds.feedburner.com/wineloverspage/tzva

Wine Advisor Archives

Sponsorship Opportunities:
For information, E-mail wine@wineloverspage.com

Bookmark the permalink.

Read more articles from The 30 Second Wine Advisor


Comments are closed