When I took over a small wine shop in Paris in 1971, one of my most pressing tasks was to upgrade the Sancerre. I decided on Vincent Delaporte in Chavignol, and he remained my steady supplier until I sold the shop in 1988. Charles Lea, who worked for me in Paris in 1977, straight out of school, still sells the Delaporte wines at Lea & Sandeman. If you discover a good producer, you don’t let him go. Vincent Delaporte himself, still hale and hearty in his eighties, passed the reins to his son Jean-Yves, whose first vintage was 1983. From the 8-hectare estate I knew, entirely on the steep chalky slopes of Chavignol, Jean-Yves has added a further 12ha, much of it on the silex or more clayey soil, which adds body and weight to the liveliness of Chavignol. He has also created a Prestige Cuvée - named Maxime after his wife - from a selection of old vines vinified in barrel. All the wines in the tasting came directly from the family cellars which are still in the centre of Chavignol. Steven Spurrier.
Written by Decanter