Ardoisieres Cuvee Silice Blanc St-Pierre d&

Ardoisieres Cuvee Silice Blanc St-Pierre d'Albigny 2021

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Press 4 White • May 2023 Direct Press Selection

This domaine has become a point of reference for Savoyard wines, and a darling of sommeliers throughout the city. Mont Blanc is the constant in this mountainous landscape, with the towering mountain keeping watch over this small estate near the Swiss border.   The 17 acre vineyard has its roots traced back to Roman times, but it wasn’t until 1998 that a group led by Michel Grisard began rebuilding the steep terraces that make up Domaine des Ardoisières today. Grisard is without question one of the most important figures in the rebuilding of Savoie wines, whether leading the CAAPG in its efforts to discover and cultivate near-extinct local grapes, or spearheading game-changing projects like Ardoisières. Despite the historic site and its international role as a beacon for the region, the vineyards were left out of the Savoie AOC and are classified as ‘Vin des Allobroges’ instead. Wine drinkers don’t seem to mind, but it is a sad reminder of the failings of the local AOC system.

Grisard made the wines here until 2005, when Brice Omont took over. Omont manages to capture the vineyard terraces’ stony and mineral energy with clarity and elegance. The wine club has become such a fun open forum for this dynamic conversation between the classics and the avant-garde, with wines like this one serving as stellar examples of precision, character and complexity outside the boundaries of Burgundy. Silice is made with Jacquère planted on schist and clay, yielding a lifted and mineral white wine that is incredibly light on its feet for a wine with such persistence and texture. Candied lemon zest, pickled ginger, salty peach skin, crushed stones, and a very mild floral suggestion that is complemented by a bracing acidic cut.

Very few wines show their alpine roots so clearly as this one. Bruno Sant’Anna and Jonathan Kemp

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