Alexandre Bain 'Pierre Precieuse' Blanc Vin de France 2019
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Press 2 • September 2023 Direct Press Selection
Alexandre Bain started his estate in 2007 in the Pouilly Fumé appellation of the Loire Valley. Alexandre works biodynamically in his vineyards and eschews the use of chemicals save for very minor doses of sulfur at bottling if absolutely necessary. He tends to pick at peak ripeness in contrast to most other producers in the region. He is committed to doing 100% of the vineyard work with his horse Phenomene. Alexandre’s wines tend to be richer, more aromatic and more dense than typical Pouilly Fumé. He believes his approach results in a purer expression of his terroir. Like many of his peers, he tired of fighting the AOC over 'typicity' year after year, and now bottles everything as Vin de France.
The Pierre Precieuse is 100% Sauvignon Blanc and is essentially Bain’s entry level cuvée. This may be his entry level, but make no mistake there’s nothing amateurish about this wine, this is as serious as Sauvignon Blanc comes. With a depth and minerality, complexity and balance found in opulent white Burgundy’s and vin jaune or oxidative Jura white wines. Upon my first encounter I picked up a hint of smokiness which I am told is common in Pouilly Fume. I found the Pierre to be a bit less oxidative than his other wines, but there were still plenty of complex oxidative qualities that kept me intrigued. There's a bit of tart and tropical fruit on the palate that is kept in check by the intense minerality and structural components that come 20 months of lees aging and old vines averaging 40 years of age. Zero sulfur added. Jeremy Hernandez