Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Saturday, 28 September 2013

2013 Loire vintage – a day in the Fiefs Vendéens

 The entrance to the impressive Mourat winery

 Pinot Noir@J. Mourat

We spent yesterday in the Fiefs Vendéens to see how the vintage was coming along.  We saw Jérémie Mourat at J. Mourat in Mareuil-sur-Lay and then Thierry Michon (Domaine Saint Nicolas) at L'île d'Olonne. I don't often get down here as it is nearly a three hour drive to Mareuil-sur-Lay and even further to Thierry's. 

Both Jérémie and Thierry are hurrying to get the early varieties picked, especially the Pinot Noir, whose skins are very fragile and the berries are starting to rot. "On Saturday 14th September we had 40 mm of rain," explained Thierry. After the dry August and September, the grapes sucked up the water and swelled up. This is not being helped by the warm, very humid weather. Thunderstorms are forecast for this weekend – hopefully less humid weather will follow on. Thierry, who started on Wednesday, reckons that the harvest will last three weeks instead of the usual five. I sense that Thierry may be regretting that he didn't start on Monday, especially as he has 40 hectares to pick by hand. 

"Petite année!" was Thierry's early but decidedly pessimistic take on 2013.   

 J. Mourat: visitors entrance to the winery shop

Egg fermenters in the very new winery section (2013) 
Above and below

(Photo: CRM)

 Clos du Moulin Blanc (above and below)

Mourat: Negrette – once accounted for 60% of the plantings
Now down to less than 10% but is being revived

Jérémie Mourat in his pre-phylloxera Negrette 

Sorting Pinot Noir@Domaine Saint Nicolas (Thierry Michon)
above and below

 Olivia from Felton Road, Central Otago (New Zealand)
She is spending part of the vintage here

Testing the grapes 

Case of 2013 Pinot Noir

 Thierry Michon hard at work 

Olivia, too

 Thierry with his new amphora

Thierry Michon's winery – different style to Mourat
Thierry has a tasting room and shop in nearby Brem-sur-Mer

Domaine Saint-Nicolas is biodynamic


Angela Reddin said...

How is he going to use the amphora (Thierry)?

Angela Reddin said...

How is he going to use the amphora (Thierry)? Above or below ground?

Jim Budd said...

Angela. Good question! It was right at the end of the visit and I forgot to ask him - I knew Thierry was busy. I'll ask.