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Region: Pays Nantais < Loire Valley < France
Grapes: Melon de Bourgogne
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic farming; schist + granite soils, fermented in tank, aged on the lees; bottled with minimal So2.
Winemaker: Stephane Orieux
Doesn’t get more classic than Muscadet. The quintessential oyster wine. Briny, crisp and clean, it’s hard not to love. It’s also hard to find clean, organic versions in this big, conventional region that spits out a bunch of cheap plonk along with a few gems. Like this one from Stéphane Orieux, whose father Joseph converted the estate to organic agriculture back in 1967 – truly a pioneer here. Stéphane has continued (now certified by Ecocert) the great vineyard work of his father, continuing to hand-harvest, eschew additives and use only minimal sulfur at bottling. His 2017 Bregeonnette, from vines on both schist and granite soils, smells like classic Muscadet: pear, green apple, citrus, and wet stone. It has the requisite acidity of the region, with an added level of flowers and chalky, chipped stone. Delicious and versatile, this could be your house white.