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Château de la Fessardière (France)
Muscadet 2003

It is always a particular pleasure to stumble across a really good wine from Muscadet, an area that is currently rather out of fashion compared to the bold, fruit-driven styles of much Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay. This Muscadet makes its intentions known even before you pull the cork, coming in a heavyweight Burgundy-style bottle and very elegant packaging. It is biodynamically produced from vineyards that where certified organic 90 years ago. The vines are hand-picked, the yeasts all-natural, and lees-stirring takes place before ageing part of the wine in large wooden barrels. The nose is subtle and mineral, with some nutty elements and succulent, firm, pear fruit. There are little notes of salt and straw. On the palate it is very pure and concentrated; there's a real spine of steely, lemony character wrapped with supple, dry, underripe melon and crisp pear. It is fresh and appetising, with bracing minerality and real complexity. 4.99 Sainsbury's.