Closeries des Moussis

VigneronLaurence Alias and Pascale Choime
LocationArsac (Gironde)
Size of Domaine2 ha
TerroirAtlantic climate. Sedimentary graves of sand and gravels on clay. Some parcels are surrounded by Landes forest. Gentle undulations around 20m altitude.
ViticultureCertified biodynamic (Demeter)
View Closeries des Moussis wines ↓

This micro property in the Médoc is run by Pascale Choime and Laurence Alias, who respectively handle winemaking and farming. Originally from the Cognac region, Pascal trained as an oenologist (and keeps a day job as a teacher and maître de chai for the Lycée Agro-Viticole de Bordeaux-Blanquefort), while Laurence is an agricultural engineer.

The couple built the domaine from scratch, investing their own money and gradually growing their vineyard area from a minuscule 0.4 ha to 2 ha in the space of ten years.

The adventure started in 2009 when Michel and Stéphanie Théron of Clos du Jaugueyron offered them to take over the lease of 0.4 ha pre-phylloxeric vines in Cantenac, a historical plot which includes ancient strains and lost varieties. The couple makes an exceptional wine called Baragane (named after the wild leeks that grow in the vineyard) from these vines, and it is interesting to note that Château Margaux takes cuttings from these rarities for their sélections massales.

In 2011 Laurence and Pascale added a further hectare on deep sandy gravels in Sénéjac and recently succeeded in securing a parcel of Margaux, from which they produced their first wine in 2017.

Farming organically from the start they are now part of a group of Margaux-based domaines who regularly share their experiences on biodynamic farming and pull together to make their preparations. Everything is done by hand in the vineyard, and they are helped by Jumpa a Trait-Breton horse who ploughs the soils.

Laurence and Pascale like to experiment and vinify in all kind of vessels, making fresh, nuanced and terroir-driven wines. They also intuitively understand that Bordeaux can produce wines with great finesse and purity of fruit at perfectly adequate, low levels of sulphur (30 mg/l total or below).

Closeries des Moussis Wines

Closeries des Moussis

HAUT-MÉDOC 2016
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc (12.5% alc.)

Laurence and Pascale produce this exquisite wine from just 1ha of high density, biodynamically tended vines worked by their own horse, situated on the sandy, gravelly plateau of Sénéjac near Le Pian-Médoc. The extraction is very delicate by occasional pigeage, and the wine is aged in just 10% new to 7yo barrels, the majority of which are 400 and 600ltr, rather than the more traditional 225ltr size. It would be difficult to find a purer fruited wine (using older barrels and low sulphur really help) which mingle black and red fruits, with a dynamism, freshness and very digestible quality, and fine tannins on the finish. And we don’t usually mention labels, but the design is exceptional too, and is just another sign of the care and love behind this wine. For drinking now to 2026+.

Closeries des Moussis

HAUT-MÉDOC 2016
Baragane
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot Noir, 10% Cabernet Franc/Malbec/Petit Verdot/Carménère/Vieux Cépages (13.5% alc.)

A field blend of a 0.4 ha pre-phylloxera vines with many forgotten varieties and some unknown! Expert pepiniériste Lilian Bérillon recently took some cuttings to study and hopefully propagate them in the future. Located in Cantenac on silty-clay soils, the yields rarely go above 10hh. The grapes are carefully destemmed and transferred into cuve without using a pump to keep the berries intact. After three weeks maceration including some carbonic, the wine is transferred into 3yo 225ltr oak barrels for 15 months élevage. 700 bottles were produced following a light filtration and less than 20mg/l of sulphur added. The century-old vines and gentle winemaking techniques confer structure and depth to this incredibly complex, lifted and high-tone wine, and years of cellaring will reward the lucky few. This is Médoc in its most beautifully classic, restrained and austere style. A unique glimpse in Bordeaux's past (and future?). Best carafed in advance. VLQ. Drink now to 2030.