On 24th May 2024, if all goes according to plan, an asteroid will hit a small part of Staffordshire, England. Experts have used AI to let us know, and to warn us to stay away of course. The impact zone is DE14 1RY, this is the postal/zip code where this small chunk of rock, that only weighs two kilograms, will land at. The asteroid will arrive in a small wooden box, complete with EAD documents and, if all goes well, should be signed for by the goods in dept. and tucked away safely into our cellars at DE14 1RY (aka: London City Bond Vinotheque)

The asteroid in question here, Le poisson D’avril (May 1st), has not jettisoned all the way from outer space, it has been flown 679kms from Saint-Andelain village in the Loire Valley, and contains 75cls of the latest vintage of 2021 Pouilly-Fume and without doubt one of the world’s greatest Sauvignon Blancs, made by Didier Dagueneau’s son Louis-Benjamin & wine maker friend Jean-Philippe Agisson at Domaine Didier Dagueneau.

The wine is called Asteroïde and it´s not made every year. When it is bottled they only fill a maximum of up to 400 bottles. All the grapes for Asteroïde are harvested from the Pur Sang ungrafted** Franc de Pied bit of the vineyard BUT! goes through a very very different wine making. Half of the juice is poured into a large glass globe (bonbonne) and the other half into a little wooden barrel. Finally, when the two halves of wine are put together (blended) the wine, in this case 2021, offers us a nose of slight nettle, green tea, dill and boxwood nose with a tangy, almondy and rather lush savory finish. Pure class!

The wine is obviously extremely rare, as are the vines they come from. It’s rather the apex of what is left of the inheritance of Didier Dagueneau’s purist, perfectionist artistic expression. Only made, so far, three times every decade, or what we could call on rather special occasions only. The harvested grapes are given a cold soak at exactly 7 degrees for three days and three nights. All fermented in their own yeasts in small oak casks, and left ‘sur lie’ undisturbed for a whole year. Then the juice is racked off into stainless steel tanks where the wine remains for another 8 months before the final ‘unfiltered’ bottling. Over the last decade I have asked various vineyard owners, when visiting them around the wine world, what would be their desert island white wine. Three of them, albeit French named Asteroïde immediately as their chosen white. Without name dropping, all three happened to be women, big names in the wine business based in the Rhone, Bordeaux and Jura!

Dear reader, if you are not at all familiar with D.D.D. I can tell you alittle here. Didier was born in Burgundy 1956 and started his working life as a motorcycle sidecar-racer on the European circuit. He retired from the track and dedicated the rest of his life to making great Pouilly-Fume, with the intention of making the world´s greatest Sauvignon Blanc. He never had any formal wine training and back in the day, his first vintage was 1982, he would hand harvest in multiple passes as is still done today, extracting perfectionist low yields, and always looking to harvest the grape at maximum ripeness. He was a wild man, the locals did not approve of his style at all, he was a foreigner to the locals and a perfectionist, they didn’t like that either. The four different Dagueneau Cuveésbecame known as Buisson-Renard, Pur Sang (´pureblood´), Asteroïde, and Silex (´flint´).

Very very unfortunately, whilst visiting Cognac in 2008, he took a micro-light plane up to get a good view of the local vineyards and for reasons not so clear, he crashed down into terrafirma. R.I.P. Didier D.

Asteroïde (in stock May 2024)

1 bottle  2021 @ GBP1.550bt (75cl)
1 bottle  2020 @ GBP1.550bt (75cl)
1 bottle  2019 @ GBP1.750bt (75cl)
1 bottle  2015 @ GBP1.650bt (75cl)
1 bottle  2012 @ GBP1.550bt (75cl)
1 bottle  1997 @ GBP1.995bt (50cl)

Each vintage of Asteroïde comes in it’s original wooden case and are offered Under Bond at LCB VT, subject to the usual remaining unsolds.

Family Roux’s Le Gavroche, in London, not only closed their doors for good at 43 Upper Brook Street end of last year, but they just sold off the contents of their famed wine cellars, just down the road, through Christie´s in London. Of course there was great interest from all over the world in the two day sale. Prices, as everyone wanted a final nibble of the cheese-souffle, where not just on the high side but where also hottly contested.

One discreet Wine Merchant ended up with two Magnums of 2009 ‘Silex’ Pouilly-Fume Domaine Didier Dagueneau.

We are offering both of them today 2009 Silex magnums @ GB£925 per magnum duty paid! ex LCB VT.

Other bottles, we are lucky to have in stock from D.D.D.:

‘Silex’ Pouilly-Fume Domaine Didier Dagueneau
3 bottles 2014 @ GB£295bt/ib
3 bottles 2010 @ GB£395bt/ib 

We tasted the 2014 Silex last Summer at lunch and the scribbled note read: ‘A greenish yellow tinge. Lime zest, quince and spice cake with a hint of honeysuckle. Bracing citrus and fresh spice, finishing with a vibrant minerality”

Franc de Pied**
An important note on the small plot that Asteroïde’s grapes comes from. On the label you will see Franc de Pied mentioned. It’s there as Dagueneau is an unofficial vinegrowing member this elite members club in the fine wine world that joins together those who are working with ungrafted vines, although there’s a caveat here: it’s membership is so far only European, because these ungrafted vines have to be native varieties in their place of origin. It’s now self appointed president is not without some controversy of his own. Loïc Pasquet runs Liber Pater in Bordeaux, and hit the headlines by releasing his wines at the heady price of €30.000 a bottle. Other members of Francs de Pied include Nicolas Maillart, Thibault Liger-Belair, Philippe Charlopin, Kostis Dalamaras, Paris Sigalas, Egon Müller, Katharina Prüm and Antonio Capaldo.

1st May 2024, Buenos Aires

´´April brings the sweet spring showers
On and on for hours and hours
Farmers fear unkindly May
Frost by night and hail by day´´
D.Swann Esq & M.Flanders Esq.