2012 Château de Brézé Clos de la Rue Saumur Blanc

SKU #1237059 92 points Vinous

 Very pale peach skin color. Fresh melon and nectarine aromas are complicated by cream, lanolin and honey. Fleshy and smooth, showing a pure, bright orange quality and toasted wood nuances and then picking up nervier lime notes on the back of the palate. Suavely blends depth with vivacity and finishes with excellent clarity, balance and mineral persistence. While this property has long belonged to the Counts of Colbert, it was only with the arrival of Arnaud Lambert that the reputation of Château de Brézé began to rise. After studying in both Bordeaux and Burgundy, he returned in 2006 to Domaine de Saint Just, which his father had purchased ten years earlier. When the two took control of the Château de Brézé in January of 2009, the vineyards were in a disastrous state, but the progression since the vintage 2010--the first he calls truly his own--has been impressive, with the 2012s being the finest whites that I have ever tasted from this estate. Little by little he has turned the 25 hectares of vineyards over to organic farming and begun separating each of the eight parcels to highlight their individual character. The Château de Brézé has long been known as the estate with the best potential for dry white Saumur. Now the results speak for themselves. (JPayne)  (12/2014)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 With some wood aging, this is a toasty, perfumed wine. It has a stony, structured character with plenty of acidity as well as ripe apricot and sweet apple flavors. The crispness has been tamed by the wood aging to give a ripe, full in the mouth wine. Drink from 2017.  (11/2015)

91 points Wine Spectator

 Showing maturity now, with salted butter and dried anise notes forming the frame around a core of creamed melon, pear and quince flavors, a nice verbena hint gilding the finish. Very tasty and still has plenty of life, so no rush. Drink now through 2021. (JM, Web-2016)

K&L Notes

Château de Brézé has a long and storied history, first being mentioned in texts in 1068, lauded by King René of Anjou in the 15th century and served at all the royal courts. In 1957, when the AOC of Saumur Champigny was established, the owner of Château de Brézé refused to be part of the appellation, saying that his estate's vineyards were the best and deserved an appellation all their own. And he was probably right. Unfortunately, the wines from those exceptional vineyards were terrible. Lucky for us, the winery sold in 2009 to Le Comte de Colbert, who recruited Arnaud Lambert from nearby Domaine de Saint Just to make the wine. He changed the vineyards over to organic farming and began producing truly stellar wines worthy of their source.

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Staff Image By: Eric Story | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/24/2016 | Send Email
I am falling in love with this producer's wines. This is a serious bottling of beautiful Chenin Blanc. Amazing texture of fruit with a graceful power that guides along the palate. This is a stunner!

Additional Information:


Chenin Blanc

- Also called Pineau de la Loire and Pineau d'Anjou. Chenin Blanc is an expressive white French varietal that makes beautiful dry, sweet and sparkling wines. Traditionally grown in the Loire Valley, the wines made from this varietal are typically labeled geographically. Vouvray Chenins are traditionally medium-sweet; Savennières Chenins are typically bright and crisp; Coteaux du Layon Chenins like Bonezeaux and Quarts de Chaume are among the world's most sought-after sweet wines, and the sparkling Chenins of Saumur are perfumed and delicious. What all of these iterations of the grape have in common is their ability to age, a gift bestowed upon them because of the grape's naturally high-acidity.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.


- Of all of the French wine producing regions, the Loire might produces the greatest variety of wines. They range from still to sparkling, very dry and acidic to hearty sweet, and clear in color to a deep purple. The diversity of wine produced in this region is due in part to its dynamic climate, which ranges from Continental to Mediterranean. This region is best known for Sauvignon blanc, Chenin blanc and Cabernet Franc. The most famous areas in the Loire Valley may be Sancerre and Vouvray.