2017 Domaine de l’Idylle Cruet Vielle Vignes, Vin de Savoie
Wines from the Savoie region of France are off the beaten path - you don’t see much of it outside the region itself. Mostly indigenous white grapes, they’re often herbal and maybe a touch savoury. Not this wine, which isn’t to say that it wasn’t interesting, because it certainly wasn’t bland and boring. This was mouthwateringly fresh, thanks to the high elevation of the appellations, but also floral, like white mountain flowers. We suspected that it was like running through a meadow in the Alps in springtime, although none of us have ever done that (also, we were well into the evening at this point, so our tasting notes were, well, less than technical).
Wines from Savoie are almost all consumed in Savoie itself, or by skiiers in the Alps. But as interest in Swiss wines is growing, so is interest in this neighbouring region. The natural fresh acidity (from the elevation) is tempered by the strong sun on the slopes and the moderating effects of the many lakes and rivers, so while the wines are very fresh, they aren’t bitingly acidic (the good ones, anyways).
Domaine de l’Idylle is currently run by brothers Philippe and Francois Tiollier (and now also next generation Sylvain), whose family has been growing grapes here for multiple generations. This wine is from Jacquere grapes grown just outside the village of Cruet. The vineyards are not certified organic, but the family has moved towards sustainable practices, although this isn’t regulated and it’s hard to know exactly what a domaine means when they say this.
The Tiolliers also make a red wine from Syrah parent Mondeuse, several whites, and a sparkling Cremant de Savoie, all of which I would be interested in trying. It looks like you can buy these from Yapp Brothers here in the UK, and 1000 Corks has a list of retail shops where you can buy their wines in the US.