Chablis 'Vieille Vigne' Domaine Moreau-Naudet 2016
Domaine Moreau-Naudet, Chablis
“"Make sure you taste Moreau Naudet," Samuel Billaud advised as I departed his Domaine. Unfortunately, they had escaped my "clutches" during my round of tastings, but thankfully their UK importers filled in the gap back in London with a selection of 2012s. This is an excellent producer. The basic principles can be compared to those of Vincent Dauvissat.” Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate August 2015
The Naudet family have been winemakers since the 17th century, but Domaine Moreau-Naudet itself only came into existence in 1950, following the marriage of Marie Naudet and René Moreau. After taking over the reins from his father Roger in 1991, Stéphane Moreau deservedly built up a fine reputation based upon the style, finesse and individuality of his wines. The hugely sad and shocking death of this young talent at the end of August 2016 robbed the winemaking world of an undoubted star. Stéphane was extremely passionate and dedicated to the production of quality, authentic Chablis wines from the family’s 22 hectares under vine, and his family and the domaine team have vowed to carry on his brilliant work. Resorting to organic treatments only, the team manually tend and harvest the fruit, in order to produce perfectly balanced, expressive wines. They choose to harvest slightly later than their neighbours to ensure perfect ripeness and work with low yields overall. All wines are fermented with natural yeasts in stainless steel tanks, before ageing in a mix of tank and older demi-muid oak casks for a maximum of 18 months. Ageing on the lees lends a depth of flavour that is a key component of each the wine’s profiles. The ‘village’ wines typically are kept for 10-11 months in tank only, whilst the 1 er and Grands Crus can express their extra dimension of complexity, thanks to time spent in the demi-muids. Included in the domaine’s vineyards is a tiny 1 hectare parcel in ‘Les Pargues’ planted with 50 year old vines, which benefits from a similar exposure as 1er Crus Vaillons and Montmains. Moreau-Naudet craft Chablis wines that are brim-full of character, each wine reflecting its own distinct terroir personality. Their style reminds us very much of that of Vincent Dauvissat, with extreme purity and intensity. One of Stéphane’s early mentors was Didier Dagueneau and it shows to this day in the domaine’s wines, mainly in their precision and razor-sharp flavours, along with the quirky packaging.
Made from vines with an average age of 25 years, the pale golden Moreau Naudet Chablis is beguiling with a mouth-tingling acidity and persistent, focused finish. Pure tangerine, apricot and lemon curd notes on the nose with an underlying stony, saline minerality give this wine superb aromatic lift. The18 months élevage produces a wine with more concentration and finesse than most villages Chablis.
Grape: 100% Chardonnay