Domaine Mosse, 2018 Update

The story of Domaine Mosse is well known, especially to those who prefer the more ‘natural’ side of wine. René and Agnes Mosse fell into wine after René somehow ended up working in a wine bar in Tours. Having built up a useful network of local contacts, they both subsequently enrolled on a viticulture and winemaking course for mature students at the lycée in Amboise. After a little work experience in Burgundy, they settled in St-Lambert-du-Lattay, very close to the old Pithon-Paillé domaine.

In the ensuing years their wines became firm favourites with the local wine bars, often appearing on lists alongside wines from Thierry Puzelat, Jean-Pierre Robinot and Christian Chaussard, which should give you some ideas as to the viticultural philosophies they were following, and also the style of wine they were making. I always found it a curious portfolio, one which included some quite classically styled examples of local appellations, such as a rather smart Savennières named Arena, and an Anjou Blanc from the Bonnes Blanches vineyard, more recently christened Initial BB and released as a Vin de France.

Domaine Mosse

Why curious? Well, at the opposite end of the spectrum, there were a number of crazy and cultish cuvées, such as the fabulous sparkling Moussamoussettes, pétillant naturel Grolleau Gris and Grolleau Noir, The Magic of Ju-Ju, a blend of Chenin Blanc and Melon de Bourgogne (well, in truth, I think the exact blend was vintage dependent) and named for a 1967 album by Archie Shepp which combined jazz saxophone with an energetic African beat. As a nod to the notion that listening to music can supposedly influence the way we taste, I tried drinking The Magic of Ju-Ju while listening to the piece of the same name; my conclusion was that the music did not enhance the experience. Indeed, after listening to it several times I found The Magic of Ju-Ju did not enhance anything at all, although it did succeed in raising my blood pressure and giving me a splitting headache.

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