Guide to the Loire regions

Val du Loir

Producer profiles - Jasnières and Coteaux du Loir

Jean-Marc Renvoisé (1992)

Jean-Marc’s family have been in Lhomme for generations. They were first granted land after the Revolution, but were essentially foresters and cereal growers, having at most 1.5 hectares of vines, making wine for the family table. Renvoisé is a large, friendly and talkative guy in his late forties. He came to wine in a serious way quite late, buying an old, abandoned farm with a troglodyte cave in Chahaignes in 1992. Although he is very serious about wine, he is still involved in the family business of raising cattle. With the cellar he inherited its contents, including some 1943 Coteaux du Loir which he was kind enough to share a bottle of with me (see note below). It’s remarkable to think this wine would have been made by the women, children and old men of the village, whilst the men folk were in captivity in Germany or in England plotting for the liberation of France. There is no record of when the wine was bottled; there was no new glass available for wine during the Second World War, although old bottles would have been washed and re-utilised.

Wine Overview :
He farms a total of seven different parcels of vines. In the Coteaux du Loir he has a parcel of Pineau d’Aunis across the river in Marçon, plus half a hectare in Rasné in Chahaignes. In Jasnières, he has four hectares of Chenin with parcels in L’Aillerie, le Clos des Jasnières, les Molières, le Clos de la Gidonnière and les Pierres Beurre where (like a lot of other growers) he has some Pineau d’Aunis.

The wines are fermented and raised in a combination of fibre glass and cement. No malolactic is allowed on the whites (and it shows) and the wines are bottled the spring following the harvest. He also has an active market for sales en vrac and sells all the Coteaux du Loir white wines off to the négoce.

The Wines :
These are authentic Jasnières, but the sort of wines that won’t win many friends in their youth. They really need time to settle and show their worth, but they are good wines all the same.

2007 Jasnières
Polished. Mid depth with yellow/green hints. Some sulphur on the nose, but behind the wine is clean, but closed. Correct, but needs time to open up. Bone dry and austere on entry. Taut and mineral and giving nothing away at this stage. Tight and nervous. Clean, with some green apple flavours. Linear and tight. Not very friendly at present and needs time. (12/08)

2006 Jasnières
More a sec-tendre. Polished. Mid depth yellow/straw. Rounded nose, but still quite tight. The palate is more expressive with distinct green apple flavours. Linear and chalky with a long finish, but still very much immature and in need of time. It will need a decade to show its true quality. (12/08)

2005 Jasnières
There remains about 12 g/l residual sugar here. Polished. Mid pale green/yellow. Attractive appearance. Clean nose, but backward. Shows some ripeness and is faintly tropical but still very tight on the nose. The palate is more approachable. Mid weight and the residual sugar helps to soften it up at this stage. Very good structure and length. Flavours of baked apple, liquorish and quince. Very good tension. Just about approachable, but will be very good in ten years. (12/08)

2003 Jasnières
The harvest here started at the start of September and the wine had a potential 16% alcohol at picking, so there is about 20 g/l residual sugar. Polished. Mid depth with green hints. The nose is more like an Alsatian Pinot Gris than Chenin. Charcuterie or even foie-gras nose and is distinctly savoury on the palate. Rich on entry, ripe, open and obvious. There is noticeably lower acidity here, but retains good balance. It has a second wind on the finish, but the alcohol shows a little and the acidity may not be enough to guarantee a long life. Drinking now, but may yet surprise us. (12/08)

(2005) Vin de Table Blanc
This wine was refused the appellation as being too atypical. It was produced from passillerage berries. Polished. Mid depth yellow/gold. Confit nose of apricots, coconut and with a smoky, savoury edge. It smells and tastes more like a Jurançon. Rich on entry, solid and concentrated but with a very fine mineral character. Hot on the finish with a pithy, orange peel flavour. The acid is a bit too low although the alcohol and (70g/l) residual sugar might help to preserve it. A curiosity. (12/08)

2006 Coteaux du Loir Rouge
100% Pineau d’Aunis. Very pale, almost more a deep rosé. Pale to rim. Very good and pure nose with excellent varietal character. Faintly savoury on the palate with good pepper and spice. Mid weight with very fresh acidity, it just fall’s a little short, lacking flesh to carry the body of the wine. Drink now. (12/08)

1943 Coteaux du Loir Blanc (producer unknown)
Polished. Very deep with great graduation to the rim. Deep orange/brown but with hints of green still at the rim. Lovely, old, delicate and refined nose with hints of crème caramel. The palate is drier than the nose suggests. Lovely acidity and balance. Now old and gentle with flavours of quince marmalade. It still retains some tannin to the finish which will have helped to preserve it. This is in perfect condition, although there is the sense it is just beginning to dry out a little on the finish, but that is being a bit unkind. It is, after all, a pensioner this year. (12/08) 

Jean-Marc Renvoisé
Cavier du Vaux Germain
Le Vaugermain
20 Rue Fontaine-Marot
T: + 33 2 43 44 89 37
P: + 33 6 70 69 04 32
F: + 33 2 43 79 30 68 

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