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08 July 2008

Viognier & Pizza

You get some idea of the ambition and drive that animates Stéphane Montez when you see the label of his Viognier, from Domaine de Monteillet, in Chavanay in the Rhone Valley.
“Viognier” is in big letters at the top of the label, the Domaine name is at the bottom, and Stéphane's name is centre stage, written like a bolt of lightning. Blimey!
Is he worth it? He sure is, and I mention the Viognier – he is better known for much pricier Cote Rotie and St Joseph – simply because this is the sort of nervy, wild, wickedly interesting wine that suits serious pizza.
Modern fruit-driven wines murder the complexity of tastes on a good pizza, even though theoretically they should work. But something like a Viognier as fine as this is just the thing: the wine is powerful, yet its typicity and poise means that the fruit is locked within the structure of the wine. M. Montez has travelled the globe making wine before going home, and he has learnt well, expressing terroir and typicity with wines such as this. So, ditch the Aussie Chardonnay and Shiraz, and get stuck into this with a sice of leek and black pudding pizza with pine nuts. If you have 8 minutes to spare, then do watch the youtube video of Stéphane's estate, and you can order the wines via where the Viognier will cost you about €17