Jean-Baptiste Hardy is a former winemaking student of Meursault master Jean-Marc Roulot (at whose cellar Dan and Mark first met him a few years ago), and now makes his own thrilling terroir-driven white wines in Muscadet.
Since taking over his family’s estate in Mouzillon – one of nine recently defined Cru Communaux in Muscadet Sèvre et Maine – Jean-Baptiste has introduced a quality-focused, organic approach to farming his 4ha of old vine Melon de Bourgogne. Harvested by hand and pressed at low pressure, his ambitious wines are vinified for 12 months on the lees in traditional glass-lined underground tanks before bottling without fining or filtration.
As Muscadets, Jean-Baptiste’s two cuvées show remarkable textural richness, as well as detailed, stony minerality, his single-plot bottlings expressing the region’s unique ‘gabbro’ (black granite) soils from different perspectives. ‘Fief de Chaintre’, from a north-facing site, is taut and saline with bright apple, citrus, and earthy notes. ‘Clos de Lozangère’, which spends 12 months in barrel, combines ripe fruit from its southerly exposure with smoke and oyster shell nuances and a luxurious, creamy texture.
Just as Cru Beaujolais has become coveted by drinkers seeking artisanal red wines at reasonable prices, so Jean-Baptiste’s Muscadets are an exciting alternative to the top white wines from Burgundy and the Jura.
Muscadet ‘Fief de Chaintre’ 2020 (£36) Sold out
Muscadet ‘Fief de Chaintre’ Magnum 2020 (£72) Sold out
Taut, focused, and energetic – apple and pear notes are lifted by crisp citrus and herbal inflections. Long and satisfying, with a salty minerality that calls for fresh seafood.
Muscadet ‘Clos de Lozangère’ 2020 (£36) Sold out
Vibrant and luxurious in texture, showing poached orchard fruit and layers of complexity: wood smoke, seashells, baked pastries, and lemon curd. Tangy and fresh.
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