Domaine Huet’s nine hectare Le Haut-Lieu vineyard, characterized by deep clay-rich soil, is known for its supple wines. (An understatement, frankly: this is one of the best vineyards in the Vouvray appellation.) Like all of Huet’s vineyards, it is planted entirely to Chenin Blanc and has been managed according to biodynamic principles for over 25 years.
When harvesting by hand in October and November, pickers make two or three passages (“tries”) through the vineyard. On each pass, careful hands select fruit that meets specific criteria: ripeness, say, or botrytization. Fruit selection is key to the finished wines; this 2003 Moelleux is sweet, clear, and pure, made with very ripe grapes.
“From another early, low-acid vintage, the golden shining, botrytis-free 2003 Vouvray Le Haut-Lieu Moelleux Première Trie shows a beautifully intense, extraordinary clear, refined and elegant bouquet of ripe fruits intertwined with mineral flavours — fascinating! Sweet, intense and delicate on the palate, this highly elegant and lovely concentrated Chenin is of great purity, balance and finesse. Its length is impressive, its generous flow is extremely sensual and its overall intensity and accessible generosity are absolutely gorgeous. This 2003 is great today, but will probably even more fascinating in 50+ years. The balance and drinkability is superb. Highly recommended.”
96+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Nov 2015
“Wonderfully creamy, with guava, mango, green tea, ginger and honey notes that glide along while filigreed acidity and fine minerality chime in on the finish. Starts with lush fruit, but leaves an elegant impression behind.”
93 points, Wine Spectator, Feb 2006