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Rendez-Vous Chenin Blanc, Clarksburg, California

Rendez-Vous Chenin Blanc, Clarksburg, California

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Published by Kris Chislett
Rendez-Vous Chenin Blanc, Clarksburg, California
Rendez-Vous Chenin Blanc, Clarksburg, California

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categoriesTypes, Recipes/Menus
Published by: Kris Chislett on Aug 19, 2012
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08/19/2012

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Rendez-vous Chenin Blanc, Clarksburg, California.
Grapes
100% Chenin Blanc
Facts
Chenin Blanc! Not exactly the first grape that springs to mind when you think of California! Some people may even say that, as a winemaker, you would have to be
CRAZY
to bother with a grape which has a relatively low level of consumer recognition.This, when you could much more easily make/market Cab or Chard etc.
This leadsnicely to my next point…
The founder of the
Rendez-vous Winery
is Larry Dizmang….
actually…..
Dr. LarryDizmang M.D. (psychiatrist), as he is more formally known! The doctoralong with hiswife Evie (a clinical social worker)founded the
Folie a Deux Winery
(you’ve no-doubt seen theMenage a Troislabel). He sold the winery (which had initially beenconverted from a former sheep ranch) in 1995, and at its peak was producing around20,000 cases. It’s interesting to note that the name“Folie a Deux”is the medical termused to describe two people who share the same delusion. In this case, it's makingwine!
 
The base for Larry’s new vinous-venture is in theOld Sugar Mill, located in Clarksburg.The venue serves as an“all-in-one”winemaking operation (custom crush, wine tastingroom and event space) for eight California wineries. Check-out theOld Sugar Mill onFacebook
The focus of Rendez-vous is to only use Clarksburg appellation grapes in their winemaking. Dr. Dizmang is also making a Late Harvest Chardonnay, Rose Grenache,Petite Sirah, as well as Rendez-Rouge and Rendez-Blanc (a pair of white and redblends).
The
Rendez-vous Chenin Blanc
is already on its way to becoming one of the morenoteworthy examples of Chenin in the country, after taking home the Silver Medal therecent California State Fair.
Click here for the Rendez-vous winery Facebook page.
Place
Rendez-vous is one of the very fewwineries that actually list their 
Clarksburg
appellation operation on the front label.
Clarksburg benefits from the exact samemorning fog and cool breezes asexperienced by the San Francisco Bay,and Napa/Sonoma vineyards.
The
Clarksburg AVA
is located in theCentral Valley region of California.
 
Even though Chenin Blanc is still thought of as one of the more obscure varietals inCalifornia, in the 1980s, California actually had more Chenin Blanc planted thanFrance! Unfortunately, during the 70’s and 80’s, most of the wine made using Cheninwas simple and commercialplonk,”often harboring a fairly high level of sweetness.
South Africa is the country that has really started to take Chenin Blanc seriously, withnow just over twice the acreage of France.
Currently there are over 24+ different grape varieties growing in Clarksburg, with thebest Chenin Blancand Petite Sirah wines in California hailing from the little-knownregion.
Taste
If, like me, you relish the opportunity get outside your“California wine comfort zone,”this is goingto be right up your alley! If you’ve ever tasted Chenin Blanc before, prepare for an eye-openingexperience with the Rendez-vous. I was prepared formuch more sweetness than I was greetedwith.Seriously thirst-quenching and mineral-drive from start to finish, showing pink grapefruit, peach,green apple, white flowers, a hint of pineapple and mango. Not in any way cloying. Crisp, with agood heft of acidity, reminding me very-much of the better Chenin Blancs coming out of the Loire.This is quintessential summer wine if ever I’ve tasted one!
Pairing
I think the same thing that happened Riesling has occurred with Chenin Blanc, in that it’sdeveloped a reputation as being inherently sweet. The beauty of this wine is that I think it willshare much of the same versatility with food as the drier styles of Riesling.

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