Tuesday, 22 August 2017

'Foutre d’Escampette' 2015, Domaine de L'Octavin

Things used to be simpler. Penguins were without a doubt my favourite animal and I hated Chardonnay. It reminded me of those constantly condensing glasses at awkward art shows and tasted like vanilla butter cream pie from a can and yes this applied to all of them thank you very much, now please pass the red.

Then I had a Chardonnay by Axel Prüfer and it was crunchy, not buttery, earthy, not creamy. It tasted like hazy sunshine dappling over lazy water or running barefoot across a spring-flowered prairie: hair-flowing, fresh-aired, care-free and problematic: I liked it. But I took it in my stride, put it on the list and told people it tastes how it ‘wants’ to taste without being forced it into format.

I called it a ‘wild’ Chardonnay and an exception to the rule and was ok with that, bandying about terms like ‘straight-jacket’ and ‘homogeneity’ and posing questions like standardisation vs. individuality? 

I remember trying to explain the taste of electricity.

But of course when things seem simple you have to be sure you're not being stupid, and this wine reminds me of the time we went to Arbois / when I realised I was being stupid. 

Domaine de L'Octavin's "Foutre d’Escampette" 2015 tastes like a long summer day at a lake. This is not the time for me to tell you what I think about people being able to own bits of lake (not cool), but to appreciate those times people who do ‘own’ bits of lake have invited us to spend glittering afternoons in ‘their’ bit. Legs long over the dock, swimming out to the far raft, watermelon slices in bags, emerald-green slash brown water with light streams cutting through. How it tastes warm and fresh but also a bit rocky. It’s fun and easy and definitely something to stick in the cooler / water / delete as you see appropriate, this is your perfect day, while popping with enough electric acidity to keep you feeling elegant long into the evening. It’s bright and zesty but there’s a softness to it, like satin. I find a lot of Chardonnays from the Jura remind me of diamonds and this does too, even if these are roughly cut and at odd angles.

What it’s not like is vanilla butter cream pie, and if they’re pouring this at art shows I wanna be there which is to say, ladies and gentleman, that I was totally wrong and that both penguins and Chardonnay can be ok.

Tasting notes:

Looks like cold sunshine through smoke. Tastes like hay and lemon-pithy lees with a hint of almond and stony white plums not quite ripe. Long lingering finish and cold water on your face acidity. Clean tasting, dirty name. 


"Foutre d’Escampette" 2015
Domaine de L’Octavin, Alice Bouvot and Charles Dagand
Arbois, Jura

(Brought to the table by Clavelin for Le Carton pop up Dead Sheep, Living Wines).

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