Domaine du Haut Bourg, 2013 Update

Muscadet talk is usually dominated by the domaines, châteaux and wines of the Sèvre et Maine appellation, but it is worth remembering that there is life beyond this particular section of the Muscadet vineyard. Just to the west, planted around the Lac de Grand Lieu, Europe’s largest fresh-water lake and a vital wildlife haven, are the vines of the Muscadet Côtes de Grandlieu appellation. Although tiny compared to the Muscadet Sèvre et Maine appellation (only a few hundred hectares are planted here, compared to several thousand hectares along the Sèvre and Maine) it is not an appellation to ignore. The head count of high-flying domaines may be somewhat lower than it is around Gorges, Clisson, Le Landreau or La Haie-Fouassière (all Sèvre et Maine), but there are some hard-working vignerons here, turning out good quality wines, including interesting cuvées that have seen prolonged periods of aging sur lie.

Domaine du Haut Bourg

One such vigneron is Nicolas Choblet, who with his brother Hervé runs Domaine du Haut Bourg. They have about 40 hectares of vines, mostly Melon de Bourgogne but there are numerous other cultivars also to be found here, all planted on the northern side of the lake, near Bouaye. The soils tend towards the sandy, such is the geology here on the water’s edge. The wines are good though, especially the top cuvées, Signature and Origine, although the more classically styled Pavillon can also be worth a look.

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