From €16.60, $25, £17.99
Anjou is not a name to make the heart beat faster but some really delightful wines of all three colours are made there (very different from the commercial norm) and this is one of them. It has fantastic purity and concentration. It just lifts the spirits with its nose of molten honey on toast with a touch of apple butter, but it finishes dry and refreshing. The finish is most impressive in fact; it just goes on and on in the throat. As we continue to say, the Loire deserves more attention. See Richard's cri de coeur Muscadet of Reckoning, and a big collection of Loire tasting notes we're planning to publish later this month (which will include reviews of two more wines from the Mosses).
I initially drank it as an aperitif and it was seriously lovely without food, but I then went on to try it with top-quality charcuterie with St John bread and fresh French butter and it stood up to that handsomely, too. It's 13% alcohol and is already delicious but has a tension that suggests there is no hurry to drink it.
There's a delightful interview with René Mosse on the website of US importer Louis Dressner, from which the portrait above is taken. He's originally from the Touraine and ran a wine bar in Tours, which put him in touch with lots of the better Loire vignerons. He and Agnès eventually sold up to study wine and later to buy this old domaine in St-Lambert-du-Lattay, just south of Angers in the Coteaux du Layon. They have devoted years to de-chemicalising it and turning it first organic and then biodynamic. Winemaking techniques are minimal but he is robust in his views of natural wine, despite being labelled by some as a natural winemaker. He does not mince his words when criticising some 'natural' wines as undrinkable.
Try this - Chenin at its purest. It's not cheap but it is very fine. The Mosses wines are imported into the UK by Les Caves de Pyrène and it is also available in the US and, of course, in France.