Muscadet is a light-bodied, dry white wine made from Melon de Bourgogne grapes that impart lemon, lime, green apple and pear flavors. This highly-acidic wine—also known for mineral and salty characteristics—is meant to be consumed young, and pairs well with seafood (a classic pairing is oysters).
Richer, creamier and more complex versions of Muscadet are also produced using winemaking techniques such as barrel fermentation and sur lie aging, which means the wine is left to age on the lees (expired yeast cells) after fermentation without filtering out the yeast sediment–a winemaking method that imparts a richer, creamier texture.
Melon de Bourgogne grows in the Muscadet appellation in the Pays Nantes of Lower Loire Valley near the Loire River in western France.
In 2011, a cru communion system was developed in the Muscadet appellation to designate superior growing regions within the appellation. The first three named were Caisson, Le Pallet and Gorges.