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Melon de Bourgogne

Made famous in Muscadet, a gently rolling, Atlantic-dominated countryside ...

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Made famous in Muscadet, a gently rolling, Atlantic-dominated countryside on the eastern edge of the Loire, Melon de Bourgogne is actually the most planted grape variety in the Loire Valley. But the best of it comes from Muscadet Sèvre et Maine, a subzone west of the city of Nantes, which is part of the larger Pays Nantais.

The name might suggest this grape is from Burgundy—and indeed its origins are Burgundian. But while history shows it is the progeny of Pinot and Gouais blanc, it was continuously outlawed from Burgundy, just like Gamay, at various times during the 16th and 17th centuries.

In the Glass

Muscadet wine is full of fresh acidity and has smoky and saline aromas with some floral character; flavors are of green pear, lemon and honeysuckle. Since the mid 1980s, winemakers have been successfully experimenting with various winemaking techniques including barrel fermentation, lees stirring and pre-fermentation skin contact to make a more complex wine.

Perfect Pairings

Try Muscadet with any light and flaky fish, oysters, roasted chicken, root vegetables and fondue.

Sommelier Secret

The wine itself is called Muscadet, and while suggestive of “muscat,” the wine is not related to any Muscat variety.

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