Domaine de Bellevue (Jérôme Bretaudeau) Muscadet de Sèvre-et-Maine 2020
In the far western reaches of the Pays de Nantes,where the Loire Valley meets the sea, Jerome Bretaudeau ekes out some of the most compelling whites wines I have ever had. Born in the cold and sometimes brutally harsh Atlantic maritime climate, rooted in granitic soils composed of igneous rocks, silica pebbles, white and pink quartz, he creates incredibly focused, racy and intense, low alcohol, high acid wines with exceptional minerality and complexity.
After 15 years of working for wineries in the region, Jerome patched together enough tanks and barrels to start his own tiny Domaine. The philosophy leans heavily on organic practices and traditional wine making, and a unique method of selection by harvesting by age of vine per each soil type. He is one of the few serious growers who believe in the wines of this region, a place long known for simple wines and dominated by overcropped, industrial-production cooperatives.
Intensely mineral, deeply focused, with a tightly wound core of incredibly mineral-driven fruit and a tinge of salinity. Bring on the oysters! Serve chilled with all kinds of seafood, shellfish, mild fish, shrimp, suchis and more. This wine is so far under the radar screen it hardly shows up on the internet price searchers, but the few shops around the world that sell this wine generally list it in the $35-$45 per bottle.