One of the producers that is eponymous of Vouvray, Domaine Huet was founded in 1928 by Victor Huet and his son Gaston. With an uncompromising adoption of biodynamic farming principles, the Domaine set up the benchmark for this appellation and gifted wine lovers around the world with long-lived, complex and utterly charming wines. Nothing at Domaine Huet is forced, their approach is more concerned with following the vines and respecting the variations of each vintage, resulting in an exceptional nuanced expression of Chenin Blanc. A fascinating exploration of Vouvray’s terroirs and Chenin Blanc’s versatility.
The 2018 vintage saw a very classic winter, with some snow falling but not too cold temperatures at the end of February. The spring was mild, and the warmer temperatures of May and early June assured that the vines could grow without stress. The summer was hot and without rain, if we exclude a storm on the 16th June. The vines of the Domaine could develop, and berries mature without stress as the biodynamic treatments help in strengthening the relationship of the vines with their soil, helping them in maintaining the life-cycle balance. The harvest starts on the 17th September and finished on the 26th October – one of the longest in the history of the Domaine!
Following the Domaine’s philosophy of allowing each year and each vineyard to express itself, 2018 vintage saw more sweeter styles produced. Such a warm and dry summer produced wines of great concentration and precision, that managed to retain an impressive freshness and a real mineral nerve. A vintage that will sit amongst the absolute classic and it is sure to have an impressively long life ahead.
Clos du Bourg Sec: The 2018 Vouvray Clos du Bourg Sec is the only dry Chenin produced at Huet that year. Tasted in May 2019, the Clos du Bourg opens with a delicate nose of white fruit and mirabelle plums, along with chalky and very fine sur-lie notes. The palate is intense, round and fruity but filigreed in its structure and persistent in its mineral grip and stimulating salinity. The yeasty texture gives this 13.5% alcohol Chenin a fine structure and mouthfeel. It's not very long or complex, but it's charming and pleasant to drink even young.
92 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Haut-Lieu Demi-Sec: The 2018 Vouvray Le Haut-Lieu Demi-Sec is clear, bright and fresh on the chalky/spicy nose. Round and lush on the palate, the 2018 is a dense, refined and charmingly sweet Haut-Lieu with accessible fruit and a stimulatingly salty finish that reveals very fine tannins and lovely sur-lie texture. This is a delicious Chenin from Vouvray but still young.
93 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Mont Demi-Sec: From green clay and pebbly silex soils, the 2018 Vouvray Le Mont Demi-Sec offers a clear, intense but elegant and sublime nose that intermixes ripe fruit and ginger aromas with spicy-flinty notes. Very well-articulated and precise on the nose, it is lush and intense on the palate, with a good structure and complex finish. This is a highly promising Vouvray whose combination of 14% alcohol and unfermented sugar asks for a couple of years of cellar aging. The finish is salty, pure, tight and vibrantly fresh. A gorgeous, highly energetic wine.
94+ Points, The Wine Advocate
Clos du Bourg Moelleux: The 2018 Vouvray Clos du Bourg Moelleux is ripe and already quite open on the remarkably fine and precise nose where delicate chalky notes intermix with yeasty aromas of ripe apples and even very fine flinty hints. On the palate, this is a sweet, lush, salty-piquant and refined but tightly woven Chenin with structure, remarkable finesse, tickling salinity and serious but fine tannins, as it is was a Pinot Noir. Filigreed and feminine on the tongue, the 2018 develops a long, tensioned, tightly woven and stimulatingly salty finish. Great class and aging potential.
95 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Haut-Lieu Moelleux: The 2018 Vouvray Le Haut-Lieu Moelleux is clear and seductively ripe on the elegant, still yeasty nose with a mineral backbone and its chalky background. Sweet and lush but fine and filigreed on the palate, this is a salty, frisky, elegant, densely woven and well-structured Haut-Lieu with fine tannins and a long, complex finish that is rich and finesses at the same time, with lingering piquancy and stimulating salinity. This 2018 is a very charming but also serious Chenin Blanc with fine tannins, good tension and aging potential.
93 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Mont Moelleux: The 2018 Vouvray Le Mont Moelleux is clear, deep, pure and flinty on the intense but fine and coolish-mineral nose. Very distinctive! Lush and intense but also pure, vital and tensioned on the palate, this elegant and seductive Le Mont offers a straightforward drive and a highly complex and energetic finish with grip and great mineral tension. A gorgeous, crystalline, persistently salty and tightly woven Chenin with great complexity and energy. Very attractive already today!
95 Points, The Wine Advocate
Clos du Bourg Moelleux Premiere Trie: The 2018 Vouvray Clos du Bourg Moelleux Premiere Trie is a fine, pure ad vital on the remarkably complex nose, initially with white asparagus and mushroom aromas but with more aeration, fresh toast, oak and flinty notes take over. The palate is sweet and lush but serious, vibrantly fresh and highly elegant, provided with fine and lingering tannins as well as a lovely touch of fresh oak. Still sweet but delicate and vital, it has a highly attractive juiciness that is structured but serious, along with firm tannins extracted from the oak barrels. The darker toned, Pinot-like Premiere Trie is perhaps even finer and saltier than the beautifully balanced and finessed regular Moelleux and needs more time to integrate all its components.
96 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Haut-Lieu Moelleux Premiere Trie: The 2018 Vouvray Le Haut-Lieu Moelleux Premiere Trie is deep and intense yet pure and chalky on the distinctive, slightly flinty and yeasty nougat-scented nose. Vital, vibrantly fresh and tight yet fine and pure on the playful palate, this is an intense, sweet and impressively rich Chenin with tension, salt and finesse as well as fine but grippy tannins. This is an exciting Haut-Lieu that is already dangerously ready to drink but will become even more complex and dimensioned with bottle age. Definitely the Haut-Lieu of the vintage!
94 Points, The Wine Advocate
Le Mont Moelleux Premiere Trie: The 2018 Vouvray Le Mont Moelleux Première Trie is pure, deep and flinty on the concentrated nose, with very fine oak, toffee and potted ginger aromas. Lush, sweet and generous yet precise and crystalline on the palate, it features very fine tannins, lingering salinity and positive energy. This is a compact, persistent, tightly woven and stimulating Chenin from the Le Mont terroir that reveals firm, tensioned structure and a young finish with potential to improve and refine.
95+ Points, The Wine Advocate