On Saturday I’m off to Montpellier for Millésime Bio and its associated events. I shall look forward to meeting up with Marco and Marie Louise and probably Michel Smith, our distinguished retired founder member. This will be the start of a busy ten days for me as once the three days (27th-29th) of MillyBio are over I’m off up to the Loire for the Salon des Vins de Loire/La Levée and and the Renaissance tasting.
It is a testament to the growth in the number of organic and biodynamic producers that Millésime Bio has become a monster. The 2020 is the 27th edition of the fair that started with I believe some 40 producers from the south of France in 1993. There will be well over 1300 exhibitors from 20 different countries at this edition, which is an increase of 15% on last year. It will be nearly double the 700 exhibitors that were at the 2017 edition.
This edition will be spread across five enormous halls at Montpellier’s Parc des Expositions. The photos above give a flavour of the size of MillyBio. Egalité continues with all the simple tables being the same size. No possibility of bling stands here aka Vinexpo etc. However, unfortunately the organisers are continuing with their policy of mixing all the exhibitors up. The policy has always been to mix up the exhibitors, so encourage visitors to make fresh discoveries. This doubtless made perfect sense when Millésime Bio was still small but now with 1300 exhibitors it is surely boneheaded.
This means, for example, that the 85 Loire producers are scattered across the five halls. It must be best part of a kilometre from one end of the fair to the other. Great for easily getting in your 10,000 daily fitbit steps but otherwise a complete waste of time. Little wonder that the smaller Salons-Off like Biotop, Les Affranchis and Le Vin de Mes Amis are popular.
A few recent bottles
2018 Froggy Wine, Muscadet Sèvre et Maine sur lie,
This is a fun, easy drinking Muscadet from the renowned Domaine Luneau-Papin, which is intended to be drunk young with friends and some shellfish. This 2018 has the print of 2018 with weight and rich ripe fruit. The style of the wine is captured by the label.
2018 Muscadet Sèvre et Maine sur lie, Domaine de la Combe,
This is an ambitious and fine Muscadet from Pierre-Henri Gadais, who has taken over the wine making for the family domaine in Saint-Fiacre but is also making wine from his own vines. It also has the ripeness of 2018 with attractive texture along with good balancing acidity. It can certainly be enjoyed now but has the potential to last and develop over a number of years. I am not convinced, however, that the label really does the quality of this wine justice.
2001 Château Petit Village, Pomerol
Pomerol has been somewhat controversial Chez les 5 recently so I thought it was time I tasted and drank a bottle from this appellation. This 2001 has been sitting under our bed in an AXA six-bottle presentation box for a number years. This 2001 was delicious – fully ready to drink with luxuriously evolved soft fruit with an inviting spicy aroma, well balanced with a long finish. It was a good partner for poached ham.
A few days prior to pulling the cork on the Petit Village we had also tried the 2001 Margaux Cantenac Brown that unlike the Petit Village was not at all memorable merely dull – perhaps it was the bottle? It wasn’t obviously corked but …..
Brought by some friends to try this is an intriguing white Pinot Noir from Baden. Although it has a little residual sugar (6 gms per litre) it has good balancing acidity so it has attractive citric mouthfeel without being in any way cloying. Good as an apéro it would probably partner grilled fish or scallops well.