Domaine Huet Le Clos du Bourg Moelleux Vouvray 2003 75cl


Tasting Note

Apricots, quince and then a subtle citrus note comes out of this sweet Vouvray. Such a joy and with years to go.

About the Le Clos du Bourg Vineyard

Also referred to locally as Chatellenie du Bouchet or Le Clos du Bouchet, Le Clos du Bourg is a six-hectare vineyard and a true clos, being surrounded by an ancient stone wall. It is acknowledged as the oldest cru in the appellation. The site is recognised by name in eighth century records belonging to the Collégiale de Saint-Martin de Tours.

The vineyard sits on the first coteaux above the town (le bourg) and directly behind the town church. The soil here is less than one metre deep, allowing the vines easy access to the tuffeau directly below. Le Clos de Bourg is perhaps recognised as the most likely source for moëlleux, from grapes that have been affected either by botrytis or passerillage.   

Prior to Gaston acquiring the vineyard in August 1953, it was owned by Russian born Charles Vavasseur, distinguished, along with Gaston, as a longstanding Mayor of Vouvray. In addition to Le Clos du Bourg, Vavasseur also owned Domaine des Biduadière and Domaine de l’Auberdière between the late 1800s and early 1900s.

A tariff issued by Domaine des Biduadière dating from the first decade of the 1900s was offering the 1904 and 1906 vintages of Le Clos du Bourg for a couple of Francs each per bottle.


Gaston Huet was born in Plauzat, a village vigneron in the Auvergne on the 4h April 1910. He came from a modest family. His father, Victor, ran the village café, which is where he met and married Anna-Constance Moreaux, Gaston’s mother, in September 1908. Victor served his country in the Great War, but as a victim of mustard gas, he suffered respiratory problems and, at the advice of his doctor, he gave up the bistro in search of another career.

Victor’s own father was an Angevin, so it was decided that the family would relocate to the Val de Loire. He was considering a future in forestry when, by chance, the couple happened upon the appropriately named Le Haut Lieu, high up on the plateau above Vouvray. It was Constance who fell in love with the low manoir with its pretty shutters and its south facing views over the valley. As it was, Victor became a vigneron instead.

Gaston, now 18, was encouraged to attend college where he studied general agronomy before returning to the domaine. Between 1929 (the first Huet vintage) and 1934, the wines were made at Le Haut Lieu.

In August 1934, Gaston married Germaine Foreau, sister of André, whose family had installed themselves as vignerons in Vouvray in 1923. The couple’s first daughter, Jacqueline was born in 1938. That same year, Gaston was destined to take over the running of the domaine from his father, although with an impending war, he found himself drafted into the French army as a lieutenant instead.

Before leaving for the front, Gaston ensured that wines from their first few vintages were safely secreted in cellars along the Loire. In the years that followed the war, Gaston and Germaine had two more children; a son, Jean, who duly followed his father by studying as a winemaker, and a daughter, Marie-Françoise. From the original three hectares, Le Haut Lieu grew to become nine and, in 1953, he added Le Clos du Bourg which is still considered by many to be the greatest single site within the appellation, and was followed, in 1957, by the addition of Le Mont. 

In 1968 Marie-Françoise married local butcher’s son, Noël Pinguet, a beer drinker by his own admission who just happened to fall in love with the daughter of a vigneron. In the early 1970s, Noël worked alongside his father-in-law and, although having no formal winemaking training, he took over the running of the cellar from the 1976 vintage. Apart from his five years spent in a POW camp, Gaston had lived the whole of his adult life at Le Haut Lieu; right up to the time of his death in April 2002. 

With no natural family successor (the Pinguet’s had two daughters but neither Anne nor Carine showed any interest in taking on the domaine), the property was offered up for sale and in 2003, Anthony Hwang, a Filipino born, New York based businessman took a controlling share.

Between 2003 and 2012 there were no real changes in the day to day running of domaine. Noël continued to tend the vines on its biodynamic principles, aided by the genial Jean-Bernard Berthomé, a local lad who had worked closely with Noël since 1978, joining directly from college.

Following the sale in 2003, Noël had a contract with Société Huet to work ‘part-time’ until his 70th birthday in 2015, although he and Hwang decided to part company in 2012. Jean-Bernard elected to retire in 2021. Today, it is Vouvrillon, Benjamin Joliveau, who officially started working at Huet in May 2009 (having just completed a stage at Hoopenburg in the Cape) who heads up the cellar and vineyard team, whilst Sarah, Anthony’s daughter, is in overall charge of domaine.

Country: France | Region: Vouvray, Loire | Alcohol: TBC | Grapes: Chenin Blanc | Organic | Biodynamic