Wine that Wants to be Water: Delicious, Bone-Dry Muscadet. $22

It’s almost too hot for wine these days. Almost.

We’re not sure where you’re reading this from, but we hope it has air conditioning. Everywhere from Beaune to Boston to Bordeaux has been baking this week. When it’s warm out we like to drink Chablis and cooled Beaujolais; but when it’s this brutally hot, there’s just one answer: Muscadet.

Muscadet is a crisp, precise, dry white wine that is the essence of freshness. It’s also abundant and inexpensive. Made from the Melon de Bourgogne grape, the best examples are raised “sur lie” (on the lees) to add complexity. In recent years Muscadet has undergone a reinvention of sorts with the elevation of three of the region’s best towns to a new “Cru Communal” status.

Today’s wine comes from one of these leaders in the new wave of Muscadet. Martin-Luneau is a family domaine farming old vines on the plains south of Nantes. Today we’re pleased to release the 2016 “Gorges” Muscadet de Sèvre et Maine. Combining exceptional terroir with extended years on the lees, this is an unusually complex take on a classic.

The 2016 Gorges is a perfect antidote to late summer muggy weather. It’s pure and clean, showing melon, dried spring flowers, and lemon zest. The mouth is smooth and very dry, with notes of salt air, stones, and green apple skins. It’s refreshing and full of energy.

Oysters are the longstanding pairing of choice with Muscadet, and the thick savoriness in this wine is an exceptional foil for the fresh brininess of an oyster. Make sure to drink lots of water this week – but once you’re well hydrated, pour yourself a chilly glass of Muscadet.


Martin-Luneau Muscadet “Gorges” 2016
bottle price: $22

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