Chenin blancs at Tsuru

My move to Dalston and the opening of Tsuru Sushi in nearby Bishopsgate were purely coincidental but I’m sure glad they happened at the same time. Tsuru has become one of my fav local eateries not only because they do delicious and affordable sushi and katsu curry but also because they have a small but exciting wine list. Emma Reynolds, one of the partners running Tsuru, thinks that wine can be a great partner for Japanese food and is always on the lookout for new and different wines to put on the list. If it doesn’t work, she just takes it off and tries another. I asked her about sake sales the other day and she said that in Bishopsgate Tsuru, at least, customers were far more interested in wine then sake. So there are some new wines on the list, this time 3 chenin blancs from the AC Montlouis. Until 1938, Montlouis was part of the Vourvray AC but they saw fit to part ways back then and nowadays in Montlouis a band of young winemakers are taking the grapes of Montlouis and turning them into some very good wine. The wines of Le Rocher des Violettes are made by the Frenchman Xavier Weisskopf. Originally, Xavier wanted to make wine in Burgundy, having worked in Beaune with Claude Marechal but those old bugbears, lack of money and very pricy French real estate put his Burgundy dreams to bed and he opted for Montlouis. He bought 7 hectares of very old vines and got to work. His wine making techniques border on the biodynamic but he can’t be bothered with all the rigamarole and bureaucratic mischief that goes with being certified so he’s settled for the organic label. Xavier does wonders with chenin blanc. I was quite impressed with his Le Rocher Des Violettes, Petillan Originel 2007 (£26), a sparkling wine that has no dosage but bottled with about 16g/l of residual sugar. The yeasts are left to ferment but not disgorged so that...

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