2017 Blanc Fumé de Pouilly, Barre à Mine, Michel Redde et Fils, Loire, France
£37.50, Goedhuis & Co, 020-7793 7900, goedhuis.com
I tasted this wine on 31 January and it moved me so much that I wanted to write it up on the spot. It provides a once-in-a-lifetime sauvignon-blanc experience, but, sadly, it was not due to arrive in the UK until later in the year.
Since then, I have been playing a game – trying to think of a finer wine made from this oft-derided grape. I cannot think of a single one that combines all of the epic sauvignon-blanc attributes in a single wine. Pavillon Blanc du Château Margaux; Haut-Brion Blanc (OK, this has semillon on board); Gembrook Hill; early Cloudy Bay; countless Chavignols from Cotat; Redde’s own wines; Cantina Terlano; Colterenzio; Reverdy; Spottswoode; Casa Marín; Daguenea; Dog Point; Te Whare Ra; The Berrio; Iona; Viña Leyda; Dry Creek Vineyard; Larry Cherubino’s epic 2017; The Lane Vineyard’s Gathering (again with semillon loitering with intent); Shaw & Smith; Cape Point Vineyards; Duckhorn; Greywacke; Boulay; Pellé and on and on… all these wines are fantastic sauvignon blancs, but none of them are as complete nor as enchanting as 2017 Barre à Mine.
The cosmic balance and inescapable magic made it a perfect 20/20 in my tasting notes. Barre à Mine translates as Crowbar. Never has such a blunt instrument inspired such an exquisite flavour. It is finally in the UK and Goedhuis only has 25 cases, so hurry.
• Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (matthewjukes.com)