Crisp, Fresh, Delicious: Bone-Dry Muscadet. $22

For a late-summer heatwave or an autumn plate of oysters.

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.

“Serious Muscadet” was once a contradiction in terms, but today the genre has been expanded and improved. In recent years Muscadet has elevated several of its best terroirs to “Cru Communal” status, and extended their aging requirements. This new Muscadet is still crisp and lively, but it’s far more interesting than a generation ago.

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. The 2018 Muscadet “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 de Sèvre et Maine
Sur Lie “Gorges” 2018
bottle price: $22

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