2016 Domaine Closel Eau de Pluie VerdelhoDavid Bowler
100% Verdelho. What a surprise. It turns out this Madeira variety--like Chenin, parented by the Savagnin grape apparently--was cultivated in the Anjou region as far back as the 18th century, particularly in the esteemed Coulée de Serrant vineyard in Savennières. It was typically planted among Chenin Blanc and over time just quietly blended into what became AOC Savennières wines. Evelyne's mother, her predecessor as the grande dame of the Closel estate, went along with that tradition, but Evelyne decided to remove the Verdelho from the Savennières. Given the name of the lightest style of Madeira known as Rainwater, made usually from Verdelho, she chose the French translation of the word, eau de pluie, as her nod to the grape's heritage and tradition.