Quarts de Chaume Grand Cru "Chenin de Botrytis" Domaine Pithon-Paillé 37.5 cl 2011
Pithon is something of a legend in Anjou, although in relation to some of the other great names associated with the Côteaux du Layon, he is a relative newcomer.
Pithon with his step-son, Joseph Paillé under the name Pithon-Paillé. In conjunction with Pithons wife Isabelle, and Josephs South African born wife Wendy, cultivating five hectares of their own vineyards around Anjou, plus 0.25 hectares rented in Roche-aux-Moines (they are currently buying fruit from an unnamed vigneron). The first vintage was 2008 and vinified at Château La Fresnaye in the Layon.
This is clearly a heavily botrytised wine, the first indication of this being the wine's incredibly burnished, bronzed hue. The aromatics carry the same message, and are just mind-blowing in their concentration, with scents of baked peach and orange, deeply caramelised fruit and drizzled honey. There is a lifted and floral edge to it, but ultimately you cannot ignore the huge, sweet, caramelised botrytis concentration this wine boasts. This shows as a rich caramel substance at the start of the palate, massive but pure, with concentration to match that suggested by the aromatics. Happily there is vibrant acidity underneath it all, and overall it shows very cleanly despite the richness of the wine. This has great substance and balance, is tense yet imposing, and it runs long and deep in the finish. A wine that is larger than life, and delicious with it.
Grape: Botrytis Chenin Blanc