Pouilly Fume 2018 Domaine Berthier £24.95
The Fumé is still dry and cutting from its limestone and flinty (some would say "smoky") soil. But it's tempered by an almost lush texture with notes of vanilla and floral spice. It's a shade less bracing than shellfish-loving Sancerre, but this Pouilly is still an elegant choice for any seafood meal. The warmer, lower-vintage altitude of the vineyard allows for more aromatic citrus notes on the nose - sweet Mandarin orange versus Sancerre's typical lemon.
The Berthier family has been living in the Centre-Loire region for several generations. In the early 1980’s Jean Marie created Domaine des Clairneaux in the Sancerre appellation.
The domaine was expanded in 1998 with the acquisition of Domaine de Montbenoit in the Coteaux du Giennois. After travelling the world, today’s generation has now returned to the family’s terroirs.
I came across The Berthier family about 15 years ago, when we had our shop in the lovely romantic Latin Quarter of Paris. Like many of our suppliers, they would drive up every once in a while with a van load, with the aim of selling everything in the back before heading home. I like the approach and style…simple, common sense techniques, respecting the terroir, whilst producing wines that had a more rounded middle palate.
Clément, who has worked as a cellar master in the USA, is now responsible for vinification and sales at the domaine. Florian, building on his experience gained in Burgundy and New Zealand, is now in charge of the work in the vineyards. Since 2015, they have been developing their activity in the North of the Coteaux du Giennois appellation, in the village of Beaulieu sur Loire. Today they work in partnership with talented wine growers in order to develop their know-how in appellations new to them in the Centre-Loire such as Pouilly-Fumé and Menetou-Salon.