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Haute Perche - terroir de l'Aubence

A new wind from the Loire: Domaine Haute Perche from Anjou is a must-try newcomer for all those of you who love Chenin Blanc and those who haven't yet had the right one ;).

between the vines of Coteaux de l'Aubence

Coteaux de l'Aubance is a tiny sub-region that stretches over just 200 hectares west of Saumur along the Aubance, a tributary of the Loire, in the direction of Angers. Here, the fog-prone microclimate along the eponymous river is known to be ideal for sweet wines (similar to the neighbouring Bonnezeaux), but some producers here also stand out for exciting, completely dry interpretations of Chenin Blanc. This includes Domaine Haute Perche, who produce a range of Chenin Blancs on slate-dominated slopes, including Crémant and a botrytised Moelleux from old vines, which really is a beaut. There's also a Cru Cabernet Franc. Can't always be drinking Blaufränkisch...

The domaine was founded in the 1960s by Agnés and Christian Papin, midst the family's old vineyards. With their daughter Véronique taking over, the domaine gradually experienced some growth and moved towards organic and biodynamic certification. They aim to be completely CO2-neutral by 2025. Since 2019, passionate investor Thierry Denjean has been supporting the small team, which has dedicated itself entirely to "reflecting the terroir of Aubance". A mission that appeals to us!😊

With its variety of sites and lieux-dits, now covering 35 hectares along the river, the domaine works with a real rainbow of slate soils, blue, red, brown, green - it's all there, supported here and there by some clay and quartzite. Minimal intervention, purism, precision, but also a passion for experimentation are decisive for the HP team: Depending on specific plots, the wines are vinified differently, in wood, steel or amphora.

Our lineup of the Domaine's wines in detail:

Anjou Blanc

For Aubance, the AOC Coteaux de l'Aubance is limited exclusively to sweet wine, so the village-style wine of the Domaine simply bears the overarching name of the Anjou appellation. An entry-level wine to the Domaine, this Chenin Blanc grows on 2 hectares of 40-year-old vines, is pressed directly and matured in steel. A very puristic interpretation of the diversity in terroir around Aubance, inviting, herbaceous and aromatic.

“Clos de Constants”

Old Chenin vines on grey and green slate, with a hint of quartzite. Direct press, élévage in 400 litre French oak. Already complex and refined in its youthful freshness, with solid green-apricot acidity and charming wood influence.

“Les Huttières”

Amphora Chenin! Extremely limited, a single 400 litre amphora was filled, entirely dedicated to the top lieu-dit "Les Huttières". Monumental wine with great ageing potential, a large glass and patience are quite rewarding here!

Coteaux de l’Aubance AOC “Les Fontenelles”

The sweet wine as the Domaine's highlight, is that allowed? It must be. An ode to the history of the Domaine and its region, 50-year-old Chenin vines, exclusively completely botrytised grapes, with minimal use of wood, refined to the maximum in steel tank. Imposing freshness, wonderful balance, still lively and youthful for 2015, but a tertiary flavour to fall in love with. A truly great sweet wine. Limited.

“Clos de Derrière l’église”

The red! A lieu-dit with 50 year old vines on grey and green slate, Cabernet Franc with about 20% Cab Sauvignon. Cooler fermentation. Matured in French oak. Fine complexity, puristic varietal typicity. A sophisticatedly structured, dense Anjou Noir from the Domaine's top red vineyard.

Cremant de Loire Brut

A price-performance stunner, the house Crémant comes from 40-year-old Chenin and Chardonnay vines and spends 24 (!) months in bottle on lees before dégorgement. Solid acidity with a minimal residual sugar buffer (1.9g/l), brioche, creamy and bright. Refined stuff.

“Brut Nature”

The Brut Nature steps up another gear. The Chardonnay portion here is fermented in 400-litre oak barrels, then bottled with the Chenin without sugar addition, bonedry (0g/l). Nevertheless, it rejoices with charming fruit, a clear benefit of harvesting fully ripe grapes! Extremely refined structure, superelegant perlage.

Insider: Jus de Raisins Petillant!

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Tony Benjamin
Tony Benjamin
4 days ago

Very good article I like it very much. A great slicing game is slice master. Cutting through as many items as you can in order to obtain the best score is the aim of the game.


Ayne Church
Ayne Church
6 days ago

Wow, what a fascinating introduction to Domaine Haute Perche! The range of Chenin Blancs they offer, from the puristic Anjou Blanc to the monumental 'Les Huttières' aged in amphora, is truly impressive.

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