In October, I did get to the Auchan wine fair. As I explained last month, I did not have the time I would have liked to look at all the possible bargains that were available. It was a bit of a ‘smash and grab’, buying some of my favourites and randomly picking a few others.
I was last at the wine fair in 2018. And when I was there this year, I recognised that some of the wines that were on the special offer of 6 bottles for the price of 4 were the same as in 2018. These included the Lussac Saint Emilion and the Versant Royal Bordeaux Superieur. I decided to not to buy the Saint Emilion. As I have found out from trial and error, to be a bit heavy, and I would only have this wine with steak. (Read my post about Saint Emilion here.) But I did grab a box of 6 of the Versant Royal. I was very glad to see that the price was the same as in 2018. Buy 6 and price per bottle is €2.93 (instead of €4.39). Although I am aware that several Bordeaux Superieur are not that great, I do think that the Versant Royal is good, and very good at that price. I do now see the ‘Pierre Chanau’ signature on the bottle, and past experience makes me trust this (Auchan’s own brand label) as a safe bet. But as promised last month, I want to know what make a Bordeaux Superieur, ‘Superieur’.
Answer? You can try typing ‘Bordeaux vs Bordeaux Superieur’ into Google. A lot of results come up, but I am a big fan of Wikipedia as I trust the impartiality of the site and non-dependence on advertising. Feel free to look for yourself at some of the other search results. Here is a section of the Wikipedia definition.
‘Under the strict guidelines of French appellation law for a Bordeaux to be classified as Supérieur it must come from a vineyard that is planted more densely. There must be 4,500 plants per hectare with a distance of 2.2 meters between rows, compared to 4,000 plants per hectare with a distance of 2.5 meters between rows for regular Bordeaux. This higher density makes it harder for the plants to survive creating stronger deeper roots, and healthier vines for the ones that do.
The regulations also stipulate a lower yield, about 10 percent lower per hectare, which allows each vine to maximize the nutrients received by the grapes that have not been pruned. The grapes must also be picked riper at harvest with higher natural sugar levels resulting in 10 percent natural alcohol level — a slight bit higher than the 9.5 percent for regular Bordeaux.
Bordeaux Supérieur can be found anywhere in Bordeaux, but is biased towards the area north of Saint-Émilion and Pomerol. The result of these differences usually creates a superior wine with a richer and more complex flavor.’
So one good bargain there. Away from the special offers, I did get some of the Clos de B Muscadet et Sevre Maine white and the Chateau Reillaine rosé (not always in stock so had to get some.) But I did take a gamble and buy a box of 6 bottles that I hadn’t tried before. I tend not to do this now. What happens if you buy 6 bottles only to find out you don’t like that wine.
But having done a post about Touraine white wines recently, I wanted to try another. And what a good choice it was too.
Domaine des Caillots
- Touraine Sauvignon 2019
- Typically €5.98 from Auchan
- At the wine fair, buy 6 bottles for €23.92 (€3.99 a bottle)
Reviewed just by me. Although I did have bottle with my neighbour Geoff. He did like it, but he does not drink much now and found it a bit strong.
Going forward with reviews, I will try to include the meal that I had with the wine. For this wine I had breaded haddock fillet served on a bed of noodles, with onions and peppers cooked in a sweet chilli sauce.
Aroma: A nice strong aroma, without being overpowering. Very pleasant, gooseberry and apple and floral aromas.
Taste: Again a very nice delicate taste. More full bodied and a stronger flavour compared to the Pierre Chanau Touraine. This has more bite but still has lovely gooseberry fruit flavours. However some may find it a bit sour. Definitely went well with the sweet chilli sauce and fish meal.Paul
Review of the wine fair
It was great to be back at the wine fair, even though I could not spend as much time as I would have liked there. And great to see that one of my favourites, the Versant Royal was at the same price for the 6 bottles for the price of 4 as two years ago. Keep an eye out for posts next year that provide the dates for 2021 wine fairs.
BBQ wine: A new description for white wine
I want to have a new expression used for describing some white wines. A BBQ wine. When reviewing some wines before, I have said that they would be fine for a BBQ. If you are invited to one on a nice summer late afternoon, you would be very happy to be served one of these wines. Light crisp and fresh. For example, the Pierre Chanau Touraine that I reviewed previously would be a good example of this. I hope that this expression catches on.
Domaine des Caillots: A new favourite
The Domaine des Caillots Touraine reviewed here is definitely NOT just a BBQ wine. It is a class above. A stronger more full bodied wine, but with more subtle and delicate aromas and flavours. A new favourite that I will look out for when shopping for wine in France. And I will buy some at the full price of €5.98. But hoping that, like the Versant Royal, it will again be on special offer at next years wine fair. An absolute bargain at €3.99.