2021 Pascal Cotat "La Grand Cote" Sancerre
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"Cotat Sancerre is simply some of the most singular Sauvignon Blanc in the world. Similar to his cousin François, Pascal Cotat crafts uncanny wines that defy both time and definition. These are wines that can age for decades effortlessly, and that marry a plush richness with a laser-like cut and energy.
The Cotat family has tended both Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir on the slopes of the fabled Monts Damnés in Chavignol since the end of World War II; it was only in the 1990s when the two Cotat brothers, Paul and Francis, handed over the family domaine to their sons, François and Pascal, respectively.
Today there are two wineries—one in Chavignol, headed by François Cotat, and one in Sancerre, run by Pascal Cotat—yet both cousins craft wines from older Sauvignon Blanc vines in Chavignol’s most-prized vineyards.
Located in the western portion of the Sancerre appellation, Chavignol has a unique type of soil called, in French, “terres blanches.” The region is essentially a chalk plateau (the same vein as is found in Chablis) with clay and limestone soils. The top vineyards, ‘Monts Damnés,’ ‘Grande Côte,’ and ‘Les Culs de Beaujeu,’ are perched on steep hillsides with little topsoil.
Cotat as a rule harvests by hand and very late, as pushing ripeness to the extreme is one element that gives these wines their weighty texture and complexity. While Cotat is not organically certified, his habits are more or less according to organic principles. He does not treat his vines with pesticides; uses only indigenous yeasts for fermentation; and follows the lunar cycle for racking. Wines are barrel-fermented in older demi-muids and aged in larger tonneaux. All wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered." -- North Berkley Imports