Valérie Chaume-Arnaud started producing and bottling her wine with one very old press and six tanks in 1996. Her parents had run the vineyard until then, but sold their grapes to the local cooperative wineries in Vinsobres and St. Maurice sur Eygues. She expanded the business in 1999, along with the help of her husband, Phillipe. Together, they produce a range of excellent wines from everyday to more elegant, from wines Valérie calls “tres françaises” to some of the finest wines in the region using no added yeast and manual harvesting. Her reputation for quality production is so esteemed that she was able to secure a special designation from the AOC authorities when Vinsobres was elevated to cru status in 2005, and was the only producer in Vinsobres to be honored in that way. Although her wines have been produced with 100% organic grapes since she started the business, she has not yet decided to apply for organic certification.
We’re especially pleased to offer her La Cadène Blanc (50% Marsanne, 50% Viognier), a white wine unlike any other in the Southern Rhône Valley – truly a treat! When Vinsobres attained cru status, the AOC only allowed red wines produced in 2004 or later to be labeled as cru wines; all white wines automatically became classified as Côtes du Rhônes. And elevation to cru status also meant that no producer in Vinsobres was allowed to label any of their wines as Côtes du Rhône Villages -- except for this one, the only wine in Vinsobres to carry that label, and the only white wine outside of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Gigondas, and Vacqueras in the Southern Rhône to receive a designation above Côtes du Rhône. We think it should be a cru wine, no question. (Of course, we're not part of the AOC, but really, they should be listening to us...) This is a wine that elevates any traditional white wine pairing but is particularly good with simple, elegant foods, where its unique combination of fruit, acidity, flowers, and herbs can be savored. Try it with strawberries (amazing), oysters (sublime), or figs and goat cheese (out of this world). Yes, it's really that good!
Alaska, California, Virginia, and Washington DC
||Rhône White Wine
||Now or hold up to 5 years
||14% alcohol by volume
Fabulous as an aperitif, pair with poultry and seafood, mild cheeses, fruit and fruit desserts