Bonnet-Huteau, 2016 Update

Muscadet seems to have a very tight-knit core of domaines that enjoy global popularity. Well, by ‘global’ I really mean among those open-minded enough to drink Muscadet, anyway. That’s great for the handful of domaines concerned, but I worry about two potential consequences. First, some of the support seems unwavering, even in the face of fluctuating quality, either because of duff vintages such as 2011, or because (perhaps after the reins have been handed over to a new proprietor) the once-unwavering focus on quality has slipped. Second, against a cult level of support, other domaines can struggle to even get a look in. Looking beyond the most famous names of Muscadet I have uncovered a number of domaines worthy of our time and interest, and yet I feel sometimes I am the only one talking about them (although I’m sure that’s not true).


One such domaine is Bonnet-Huteau, run by brothers Rémi and Jean-Jacques Bonnet (the latter pictured above). The domaine ticks all the boxes; having been converted to organics quite a few years ago, today it is run according to biodynamic methods. The picking machine has been banished to work and wiggle the vines on other more distant domaines, so the fruit here is all hand-picked, and the winemaking results in an attractive portfolio largely comprising site-specific cuvées, as well as an entry-level fruit-orientated wine and an upper-class cru communal cuvée. What’s not to like?

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