Spring brings many good things to us here at CWS, with a swathe of new releases regularly arriving at the shop. The wines of François Cotat from Chavignol are at the top of the tree, held in the highest regard amongst staff and peers alike.
The Cotat name commands the utmost respect in Sancerre, due to the tireless work of brothers Paul and Francis at their family domaine since 1947. Upon handing over the reins to their sons in 1998 it was decided to split their holdings between the two, with François retaining the cellars in Chavignol whilst cousin Pascal set up shop in the heart of Sancerre. François had been making wine with his father and uncle since 1987, so little changed when he took full control. With low yields, traditional vinification methods and longer barrel ageing, these are wines of great density and power which command time to unravel, atypical to modern sauvignon. Sancerre escaped the devastating frosts experienced by their neighbouring regions in 2017 proving to be a harvest of great promise, delivering wines of depth and purity.
Typically, the demand for these classical whites is great with only miniscule quantities arriving at our shores, so be quick to email us your wish list and we’ll do our best.
2017 François Cotat Sancerre Rosé – $69 retail ~ Only 6 bottles available
Cotat’s rosé is cult and one of a very small group that benefit from (and in some ways demand) aging. Just like Cotat’s whites, with age, it’s the terroir that comes to dominate the rosé with a singular minerality. There may be a silky texture and gentle floral notes, but it’s the stony minerality that defines old Cotat rosé. Sadly, they’re as rare as they are beautiful. Andrew Guard Importer
2017 François Cotat Sancerre Caillottes – $85 retail
This has superb dimension, unlike any other Sancerre – bright lemon, fresh ginger and white pepper perfumes are lifted and hover over a rocky minerality; the mouth is equally defined yet is made rich with a sensation of silky, full-bodied white fruits. The mouthfeel is chiseled and pure with layers of concentrated flavour… the vineyard name refers to a type of soil found in Sancerre—very rocky and chalky. This is a wine that will keep and improve for many years. Andrew Guard Importer
2017 François Cotat Sancerre Monts Damnés – $110 retail
…This has a deeper tone and pitch than the ‘Caillottes’ and perhaps a touch more concentration. François’s Monts Damnés is clearly the best example of this famous Cru. Reflecting the excellent vintage, this wine is cool and compact, a taut, tightly coiled core of briny minerality; such tension, and exquisite balance. Superb and needs time, plenty of time. A rare and iconic wine in the Loire and for good reason. Andrew Guard
2017 François Cotat Sancerre La Grande Côte – $120 retail ~ Only 6 bottles available
This vineyard is where François has his oldest vines, these days the average age is about 40 years because he has had to replant many of the very old vines as the Sauvignon is susceptible to viruses as it ages and so past 60 years old the vine is usually close to unproductive. This vineyard produces the most flamboyant wines in this collection, there are notes of tropical fruit and a fuller texture but don’t let that fool you as it is all aligned to incredible finesse, cool acidity and tactile minerality. These are very special bottles. Andrew Guard Importer
2011 François Cotat Sancerre Cuveé Paul – $264 retail ~ Only 3 bottles available
Named after François’ father, Cuvée Paul is an incredibly rare wine made from the richest barrel La Grande Côte, set aside as having the greatest potential for ageing… Orange peel, lemon oil, pineapple and passion fruit all appear at intervals when left to develop in glass and these would be interesting enough themselves, but the wine is set apart by the undercurrent of exotic spice; cardamom and anise. A rarity for the cellar, this one will live for 50 years! Andrew Guard Importer
TO ORDER: Please click here to send us a reply email with your wish list and we’ll be in touch to confirm your order.