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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Florian Brenot for Thunevin Wines


Florian Brenot tasting with Ali Cheevers (MS Walker)
 Florian Brenot for Thunevin Wines

You may recall an earlier article where I was discussing the winemaker Jean-Luc Thunevin and his wines?  Yesterday I had the pleasure of also meeting his new representative, Florian Brenot.  He was articulate and genuine, extremely knowledgeable about the wines with an amazing and discerning palate.  Word is that he comes from very humble beginnings in France and met Jean-Luc Thunevin par chance (by accident!).  Thunevin apparently saw something in him and hired him on the spot, sensing a good partnership.  Two years later he is traveling with Thunevin wines internationally!  Bravo!  We were lucky to have him visit us here in Portland, bringing us closer to the world of wine in Saint-Emilion, France through tasting and hearing the stories of how they were created.
With Jeff Landry (Farmer's Table) & Audie Conrad (Central Dist)
The wines were as elegant and complex as I recalled ... with luxurious mouth feel, subtle layers and much finesse.  Wonderful fruit and spice, herbal and floral qualities as the case may be, all beautifully integrated.  The terroir is truly apparent here ... black schist, limestone, sand, chalk to name a few.  The Calvet Cuvee' Constance 2008 from Cotes du Roussillon has great depth, powerful fruit and elegance, with blueberry and dark cherry.  Velvety.  This is a huge mouthful that completely satisfies but doesn't make you full!  Old vines.  All organic.  60% Grenache Noir, 30% Syrah, 10% Carignan.  Sensual & delicious!  Mauvais Garcon (Bad Boy) 2006 from Bordeaux has anise on the nose with deep bright and dark fruits such as plum and blackberry and a plenty of spice, pepper and earth.  Subtle herbal qualities meander through, with a dry tannic finish.   12 months in new oak.  Gutsy.  This is 95% Merlot!  

Ali Cheevers, sales representative from the supplier MS Walker, was enlisted to take Florian around to the various restaurateurs and retailers that will hopefully carry more of his wines.  For now you can find Chateau Bellevue la Randee (see earlier post), Calvet Constance and Mauvais Garcon at Old Port Wines on Commercial St..  Stay tuned for more wines and availability!  I fell in love with the Domaine des Sabines LaLande de Pomerol 2008.  This one is your deep inner voice.  Gorgeous color, aromatics. Silky mouth feel.  Incredible subtlety with a myriad of layers seamlessly integrated.  Who's going to pick this one up??  Come to think of it, the Domaine Virginie Thunevin 2010, luxurious with huge integrity, is pretty spectacular too ....

Florian & Ali at Petite Jacqueline
We thought we'd take Florian for a spin over to Petite Jacqueline (State St., Portland) for some sustenance and more wine!  Here are Florian and Ali tasting a couple of gorgeous dessert wines ... a glass of Domaine La Tour Vielle Banyuls 2008 and a Chateau La Vaurie Peyraquey Sauterne 2003.  Both delicious!  The Banyuls is an appellation hailing from the Eastern corner of France near the border of Spain.  Garnet, black/purple in color with fig, currant, cherry & cranberries.  Luscious! Sauterne, within the Graves district of Bordeaux region.  This was a gorgeous salmon pink color with orange zest, caramel & cedre (cedar),  Neither are overly sweet. Lovely!

Florian & Lisa Dombek (WINE 24/7)
Thank you Florian ... we look forward to having you again and to enjoying many more wines from Jean-Luc Thunevin!

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