Hilary Akers, the Dutch FD’s respected wine writer, expects “too much alcohol and not enough finesse” when faced with a South of France chardonnay “Vin de Pays d’Oc” to taste. Instead, she finds one she calls “classy”, and worthy of its Pays d’Oc Ambassador status …
The Chardonnay-chenin from Rives-Blanques shows no sign of “fruit overload” or “over-compensating added acidity” so often found in hot climate white wines, she says.
This one is “nicely balanced: fruity but not a fruitcake” . On the nose she finds “yellow plums, a touch of peach, melon, fruit blossom and soft spices”; in the mouth, the wine is “juicy with fine acidity, with the dryness of stone fruit”.
”Rives-Blanques is famous for its sparkling wines,” she says, “but now I see why their everyday non-sparkling wine is the house wine of many top restaurants.
You can drink it from the aperitif right through to the main course “