2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Blanc Fumé de Pouilly"
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
There is as usual nothing mundane about the 'basic' Dagueneau cuvee, the estate’s 2009 Blanc Fume de Pouilly. This is the sole cuvee at its address to blend across two soil types--Marne chalk and silex--as well as across several far-flung parcels, some of which were hailed on this year, and the parts had not yet been assembled for this 2009 when I tasted in June, so I offer only a composite impression. Smoky red currant, lime, and nettle display an aromatic pungency that coincides with a bright, energetic, silken-textured, very pure palate impression. White peach and wafting florality are conveyed by the (in this vintage, one-third) Marne chalk portion. The suffusion of chalk here is as usual impressive without in any way blocking the mouth-watering flow of fruit, and the same can be said as far as the influence of wood is concerned. This finishes with vibratory intensity and ringing clarity, as though it had been grown in a vintage from which nobody else in the region got to make wine. Expect it to be worth following for at least 6-8 years. (91-92+)
When an iconic winemaker dies, especially long before his time, oenophiles mourn. And they wonder. Will whomever takes over the estate ever be able to meet their expectations? In the case of Louis-Benjamin Dagueneau, who took over the family estate after his father Didier Dagueneau's tragic death in 2008, the answer is yes. Recognized by Wine & Spirits Magazine in their recent "30 Under 30" feature, the 28-year-old has "picked up the role masterfully and courageously," according to Olivier Jullien of Mas Jullien, a close family friend. "He manages to express his terroirs in a very pure, essential way." Dagueneau himself says, "To continue to keep alive what my father built is important to me. And the domaine must continue to evolve in that same spirit." David Schildknecht, writing for Parker's Advocate says: "Tasting at this address has never been more exciting and the wines have never been more evidently at the summit of the Loire Sauvignon pecking order."