Vouvray Moelleux Le Haut Lieu 1947


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1 75cl Bottle Case 12 £500 per Btl Bottle [Add to shopping basket]
Tasting Notes

From a legendary vintage ("the most highly respected Loire vintage of the 20th Century" - Richard Kelly), Gaston Huet's dark amber-clored 1947 Vouvray Le Haut Lieu Moelleux opens with a very clear, intense and concentrated bouquet of super ripe peaches, apricots, and blood oranges mingled with fresh lime and coolish mineral flavors,; it is highly elegant and noble in its beautiful balance and intensity. Powerful, sweet, intense and very rich on the palate, this is an absolutely exceptional wine: dense, intense and finesse-full, with firm yet delicate tannins and an endless fruit intensity. There is mind-blowing balance, tension and freshness here. The finish is so pure and salty, so firm and intense that this quintessence of Chenin Blanc should go for another 50 years. Or, as Jürgen Franke from the German retailer Vinaturel puts it: "The 1947 is great but is always giving you the impression you have open the bottle two or three decades too early." According to Kelly, who quotes Gaston Huet himself, the 1947 was "the greatest vintage I (Huet) ever made." He reports: "The harvest commenced on the 19th September and all the sweet wines came from heavily botrytised fruit. According to Gaston, the apparent deep, oxidized appearance of the wines arrived early on in their maturation, but once the color deepened, the wines themselves changed very little." (955 EUR, if still available)

Score: 100

Stephan Reinhardt, Wine Advocate, RobertParker.com Maturity: 2015-2065 01 November 2015

A legend because... It has entranced so many tasters over the years. ‘It is the wine that made me fall in love with Vouvray, Chenin Blanc and the Loire,’ says Loire expert and author Jacqueline Friedrich. Vouvray comes in various styles, but its greatest, most long-lived expression is the sweet style known as ‘moelleux’. Given the northerly climate of the Loire Valley, truly great moelleux vintages are rare. Thus, between 1976 and 1985 no sweet wines were produced at Domaine Huet. By any account 1947 was exceptional, easily the best vintage since 1928. The wine After harvesting, the grapes were pressed in a vertical press, and the must fermented in 600-litre barrels in the domaine’s cellar, which is tunnelled into the limestone rock and benefits from an even temperature of 18°C. There was no malolactic fermentation and the wine was bottled in April 1948. It had an alcoholic degree of 12.4%, and 90 grams per litre of residual sugar, which is relatively low by modern standards but in 1947 would have been considered high. Huet said simply of the 1947: ‘It is the best wine I ever made.’ The reaction There was no contemporary response to the wine since it was not offered for sale until the 1970s and even then was only presented to the domaine’s top clients. Michael Broadbent last tasted the wine in 1997, noting in Vintage Wine: ‘Medium-deep warm amber with gold highlights; a deeply honeyed bouquet, dried apricots and vanilla; still deliciously sweet, rich, like crème brûlée, excellent acidity and overall condition.’ Stephen Brook tasted the wine in 1985, recording: ‘An exceptionally beautiful wine: although rich in colour, aroma, and taste, there is nothing heavy about it, simply because the balance is impeccable.’ Retasting the wine with Huet in 1998, Brook discerned aromas of ‘caramelised oranges and tropical fruit’ but while the palate was sweet and concentrated, it ‘lacks some intensity and flair and shows some signs of maderisation’. As with all old wines, bottle variation is inevitable. Pinguet notes that the wine today is deep amber in colour with a touch of gold, and aromas of caramel, tobacco, quince jelly, and bitter oranges. For anyone lucky enough to hold a bottle, he recommends serving it with a blue cheese that is neither too mild nor too strong, such as a Fourme d’Ambert. 'By any account the 1947 was exceptional, the best since 1928'

Score: -

Decanter, Decanter.com 01 December 2011

Very deep copper/orange with a greenish rim and green leafy aromas. Some savoury notes. Great grace, life and raciness. Slight grapefruit. Real class and a lovely lift. Bursting with health. Has structure and is long and is the most dignified wine of the lot. This is a throat-warmer with hints of orange peel. Vibrant. Health juice. Wonderful clean palate-washer.

Score: 20

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com Maturity: 2003-2020 17 July 2003