Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Mini-Bar Offer

Magazine article The Spectator

Spectator Mini-Bar Offer

Article excerpt

This month we feature luxurious wines from France -- some well-known, others which deserve to become much better known. They're from Yapp Brothers in Wiltshire.

The celebrated Robin Yapp, who founded the firm, and his son Jason Yapp, who is now running it, have always taken great delight in fossicking out wines from small vineyards in the Loire and southern France. Their idea of joy is to go off the motorways, off the side roads and onto a dirt track, at the end of which is a gnarled old vigneron who welcomes them with home-cured ham, local cheeses and an amazingly delicious wine.

The Vatans, who make the Sancerre les Perriers 2006 (1), are not so small -- they have nine hectares -- but the wine is very fine indeed, with a richness to go with the usual grassy notes, plus hints of blackcurrant, elderflowers, and I'd hazard, apricots. The Sancerre people got a terrible shock from New Zealand: this is a measure of how well they've responded to the challenge. Reduced from £11.10 to £9.95.

Forget whatever you might think about Chenin Blanc, so often made into thin, weedy fluids, as if a child has spilled water into his sherbet dabs. This Savennières from Château de Chamboureau 2005 (2) is full, plump and utterly delicious. …

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