Pierre Luneau-Papin Muscadet Sur Lie Clos des Allees Case of 6 Bottles 2009
One of the unusual features of Muscadet, according to the Hachette Guide, is that it is not named after a geographical or historical area, but that the name probably dates from the Middle Ages when Muscat grapes from Cyprus acquired a reputation at feudal courts. After the great frost of 1709 the vineyard was replanted with a Burgundian grape variety, Melon. Lees are the deposit or sediment left at the bottom of the tank after the wine has fermented. Although the gross, or coarse, lees are eliminated, many Muscadet producers choose to leave the wines on the fine lees to impart aromatic substance and richness to the wines. The sur lie designation contrary to supposition is not given solely to rude French producers, but to Muscadets that have been kept on the lees for more than four months and have not been racked or filtered prior to bottling - which takes place before the last day in June in the year following the vintage. Pierre Luneau studied with the renowned Emile Peynaud and Ribereau-Gayon and has been making superb Muscadet for as long as we can remember. He keeps a variety of thoroughbred Muscadets in his stable and on his table, terroir differentiation being the name of the game. The vines may be grown on sands and gravel, on granite and gneiss mica, schist or volcanic gabbro, but the mineral, salty nuances are always present and the capacity to age built into the steely structure of the wines. Clos des Allées is low-yielding old vines Muscadet, a mightily mineral taste bud tingler that's serious enough for food. Laverbread, said Matthew Bradford, (a man who knows his (sea)weed) as he was nosing this, and, certainly it is reminiscent of all things littoral. The concentration is achieved by hand-harvesting, maceration pelliculaire and seven months sur lie before bottling.
The total area of the domaine is 11 hectares, distributed in different parcels located in the districts of Monthelie, Pommard, Puligny-Montrachet, and, of course Meursault. All the vineyards were cultivated following organic agricultural practices from 1992 to 1997, at the end of this period the domaine became 100% biodynamic.
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