Through the Grapevine: Your Thoughts on… Muscadet

Yesterday we visited the Muscadet wine growers syndicate and the producer Les Frères Couillaud, where we heard both ends of the spectrum in terms of outlook for this region that has faced hard times catalyzed by an untimely frost in 2008 coincided with a general market crash and a myriad of other factors.

After getting over the emotional roller coaster brought on by hearing such great discrepancy among these analyses, I started to wonder what, really, is the international image of Muscadet today.  So I’ve decided to start a new feature, which I’m calling “Through the Grapevine” where its up to you, my readers, to reply with your opinions!  So here we go.. can’t wait to hear what you think!

Château du Clos de Vougeot

While in Burgundy this past weekend, I had the opportunity to visit the Château du Clos de Vougeot, home of the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin.  Located between the villages of Vougeot and Nuits-St-Georges, both well known for their wines.

The chateau was built in the 12th century and used by the monks of the Abbey of Cîteaux.  The four enormous presses and wooden vats,  still present in the castle today, were used by the monks to produce wine from surrounding vineyards.

In 1941 the castle was sold to the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin for the symbolic price of 1 franc, on the condition that they would restore the property that had been badly damaged during World War II.  The Confrérie had been created in 1934 in an effort to revitalize the global market for Burgundian wines, which had been negatively impacted by the global economic crisis.

Today the 12,000 chevaliers worldwide continue to celebrate Burgundian wines and culture during many grand events or “chapitres” throughout the year, often featuring distinguished guests and always featuring the wines and cuisine of the region.

Views of the vineyards of Clos de Vougeot: