Incredibly inviting method ancestral from Vincent Caille. 10% cot (Malbec) gives it a slightly darker hue, and damn, it's delicious. A classically Loire take on refreshment.
Vincent Caillé is a 5th generation winemaker. In fact, both of his parents came from different winemaking families, so he is a blend. In addition to benefiting from different influences, Vincent also has a wide range of inherited parcels.
His domaine ranges across 4 towns, 3 soil types, and 14 kilometers of prime Loire-Atlantique terroir. Vincent started working his father’s parcels in 1986 and took over the 4 hectares when his father retired in 1992.
Vincent owns 14 hectares today with his wife Sylvie continuing the family story for another generation. He bought up some really great parcels expanding the domaine to 38 hectares, and then selling the least interesting vineyards, finishing off at 26 hectares of prime sites.
The first time the name Muscadet appears on record is in an old document from the nearby village of Gorges in 1635. It has been found that Louis XIV made an “ordonnance” to bring resistant grapes from Burgundy after the Great Frost of 1709, which is where the Muscadet variety, Melon de Bourgogne, gets its name.
Today, Muscadet’s appellation is spread across 13,000 hectares. It was first made an AOC in 1936 when 23 villages and 8,800 hectares formed the heart of the appellation between the rivers Sèvre and Maine. Monnières has much of the prime heirloom vineyards for Muscadet. Vincent’s father was born in Monnières and his mother in Gorges. Vincent saw the light for the first time in Maisdon where his father’s father lived. That was in La Févrie where he still has some vines from which he makes his Clos de la Févire selection, his own personal favorite.
Vincent now lives in Monnières which used to be two houses with a cellar in between. His actual backyard is planted in Melon de Bourgogne.
Vincent’s wines harken back to the “good old days” when nature was queen. This was way back before WWII reshaped Europe. As the 20th century continued, winemaking schools, high-tech cellars and agricultural chemicals changed the way wine was made. The peak of this foolishness was in 1970s when doctors would proscribe antibiotics for a runny nose.
The technological catastrophy for wine happened in 1980/81 when the AOC was extended by 50% and winemakers used technology to majorly boost Muscadet yields. This turned the Muscadet zone from a region known for high quality, to a wine lake in a few years. 1981 was the year Vincent left school, and entered this dark age for Muscadet. Even Domaine Le Fay D’Homme got swept up in the madness. Vincent considers his generation of Muscadet producers as “sacrficed” to the cause of rebuilding, but fortunately he is curious and open-minded. He has done amazing work towards the cause of restoring the reputation of Muscadet.
By tasting wines from his area and elsewhere, he realized very quickly that there was a major quality difference between the traditionally made wines and the new wave of technology. He considered changing his practice and learning from other traditional estates (i.e. Guy Bossard). He had a firm conviction that going back to ancient techniques would make a wine he could be proud of.
To make good wine you need a certain philosophy…. you need to be a dreamer.
A dreamer is a perfect adjective to define Mister Caillé; someone with a positive spirit willing to sacrifice a comfortable life to improve the quality of his wine harness nature for a better life in general.
La Part du Colibri means “The Place of the Hummingbird.” It’s a reference to an ancient Amerindian philosophy meaning that even if you can only help in small ways, but you help the best you can, this is a full contribution to making the world a better place. He started by converting his whole domaine from conventional farming to organic. He is now working on converting to biodynamic practices as well. He has a strong determination to realize the dream of doing his best.