Wine of the week: Melonix 2014
One of the best ways to make new wine discoveries is to experiment with wines by the glass. And that is how I found Melonix, a fabulous wine from biodynamic Loire producer Domaines Jo Landron at the newly opened Frenchie in Covent Garden yesterday.
Because it mentions the grape on the bottle it can’t be labelled muscadet (for heaven’s sake!) so it’s classified as vin de France
According to Doug Wregg of importer Les Caves de Pyrène* “grapes are harvested by hand (unusual in the region), fermentation with wild yeasts (very unusual), no chaptalisation, no SO2 added, it undergoes a natural malolactic (very unusual) and no sulphur is added even at bottling. It breaks all the rules.” In Landron’s own words he sees it as ‘a rustic wine, untamed and free.”
It sailed effortlessly through a rich dish of hot smoked trout with whey and was so delicious I treated myself to a second glass, despite resolving to have only one at lunchtime. (Well, it is only 12%!) I can imagine it being great with sashimi and other raw fish dishes as well as the obvious suspects of oysters and mussels.
Apparently it benefits from opening ahead as many natural wines do. The bottle I tried - which incidentally was on the full list not the wines by the glass selection (it’s always worth taking a look at the longer list) - already had a glass taken out of it so could have been open since the previous day but was still wonderfully pure and intense. Natural wine sceptics take note!
*Who sell it for £14.20
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