Naked Wines emailed me with an offer that was too good to refuse - a case of six wines for just the cost of the taxes and delivery, working out at about £2 per bottle.
The wines were a pre-selected mixed case which is always a good way to get a sense of a retailer's "house style".
This Petit Villebois is the "younger brother" of a Sancerre lookalike which Naked invited me to review some time ago and which I thought was an interesting mixture of the New World and the Old (reviewed here).
The winery is owned by Dutch interloper Joost de Villebois who fell in love with the region whilst on holiday; he graduated from wine-making school in Bordeaux (where they also make Sauvignon Blanc) and has been making wine since 1996, in as environmentally-friendly way as possible.
From a lower VdP appellation, this wine has characteristic Loire flinty gunsmoke on the nose and an apples-and-pears acidity with some cantaloupe melon on the palate. It is balanced and less herbaceous than many a Sauvignon; it is also lighter, with less intensity, structure or minerality, although the length does improve with some air.
Naked suggest this as a mid-week quaffer, and it certainly is light enough to drink without food - it was a little overpowered by the cheese that we had with it, and would probably match better with plain white fish.
To my mind, this is just the sort of white that should prove really popular at the moment - with plenty of fresh Sauvignon character but less in-yer-face than the overly tropical New World versions and a very easy-drinking crowd-pleasing style, but still grown-up and sophisticated.
here - or an article by Arnold Waldstein here).
Naked Wines - http://www.nakedwines.com/