Loire Chenin produced in the most natural method is something I'm always excited to taste. The bar for excellence is high, as only the most skilled viticulture can turn out these complex and high-wire achievements. That's why my interest was piqued when Chateau de Bonnezeaux's importer announced a new name in its portfolio.

Olivier Lejeune, like Guyonne Saclier de la Bâtie of Bonnezeaux, worked alongside the legendary Mark Angeli at Ferme de la Sansonniere, where Lejeune learned the skills to produce Anjou wines with minimal intervention. Lejeune's two cuvées offer terrific value: Both explode on the palate with soft texture and open-knit fruit met with a mineral grip and tingling finish that saturate the palate.

The Chenin Blanc shows ripe orchard fruits and honeysuckle cut with lemon citrus notes that switch this broad attack of ripeness into a mineral delivery system masterpiece. The natural element is abundantly clear with its cardamom spices fully enveloped under a strict spine of chalk and schist-derived minerality.

This importer's portfolio also includes names like Roumier, Roulot, and D'Angerville, and it's exciting to see the juxtaposition of more natural-minded producers coming to the forefront. If there's one new name to familiarize yourself with after the Bonnezeaux wines have sold out, it would be Lejeune's lineup.

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