Newsletter: Château De Bonnezeaux 'Inter-Val' Chenin Blanc NV

Newsletter: Château De Bonnezeaux 'Inter-Val' Chenin Blanc NV

There seems to be no shortage of compelling Chenin Blanc coming out of the Loire these days. Producers across the region continue to stand up for better farming practices, and at times rebelling against archaic, counter-productive appellation laws.

Château de Bonnezeaux, and Loire Valley iconoclast Marc Angeli, are at the forefront of this rebellion, with this historic Château reawakened under his masterful guidance. As such, they have come straight out of the gate producing some of the most beautiful, energetic and world-class dry Chenin Blancs in an appellation where only sweet dessert wine production is permitted.  

Today's one-off release is a wine I bought blindly. A purchase based only on the short but stunning history of the domaine. I opened a bottle immediately upon arrival and what I tasted was simply stunning: a scintillatingly dry Chenin with chiseled angles and deep concentration of flavors. There is a density to this wine which can only come from a dry wine made in sweet wine terroir. A wholly original wine, never to be made again, from one of Loire's greatest living wine makers.  
100% Chenin Blanc from two parcels and two vintages: the prized Prieur des Noues parcel harvested in 2021 and a parcel of old-vines harvested in 2020. Both share identical soils and aspect, and were blended together to make up for the hail and frost that plagued both vintages. Each parcel was vinified separately, aged in used oak barrels and blended before bottling.

A glass of liquid gold with linear but layered aromas of Anjou pear, nectarine, white flowers and bay leaf with subtle iodine notes. The palate is a live wire of bristling freshness and concentration, delivering waves of tart, green apple and briny minerals along with mouth coating textures. Finishes with a snap of refreshing Chenin acidity. One of the best white wines I've tasted all year. 
In the heart of the Loire, just south of Angers, sits Château de Bonnezeaux. The storied estate has been in existance since the early 19th century as a producer of sweet wine in the village of Bonnezeaux. But it had been abandoned, the vines unmanaged and the buildings in ruins, and hadn't produced a bottle in over 30 years.

In 2012, Guyonne Saclier de la Bâtiea, a descendant of the Château's original owners, had just finished working with Mark Angeli, whose dry wines from Bonnezeaux had changed the landscape here. She believed adopting a similar approach could resurrect her family's estate, setting out on a course of rehabilitation for the property. Now thriving, all farming at the Château is organic, and the serious terroirs at its disposal means the wines are fantastic year after year. Almost everything they make is labeled Vin de France, as dry wines are not allowed in the AOC. Rebellious spirit has never tasted so good.
Château de Bonnezeaux 'Inter-Val' - $109.99 

To order, reply directly to this email or call me at 843.576.4845
Justin Coleman

Monarch Wine Merchants



Monarch Wine Merchants
1107 King St
Suite B
Charleston, Sc 29403

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