Nicolas Suteau

Location: La Guilbauderie, Loire 
Founded: 2007
Size: 6.7 hectares
Varieties: Melon de Bourgogne, Folle Blanche, Pinot Noir, Egiodola 
Viticulture: Certified Organic
Vinification: Indigenous yeasts, no filtering or fining, no sulfur additions

Nicolas Suteau took over his family’s estate in 2007, working alongside his father until 2016 when he made his first solo vintage. In 2017 he began to farm organically, becoming certified in 202. He uses biodynamic methods and promotes biodiversity through his orchards, alfalfa and wheat fields, and farm animals. The oldest vines on the property are the Melon de Bourgogne, planted in 1949 on gneiss soils. The vineyards are within the Muscadet appellation, but his natural style of winemaking doesn’t follow the rules of the AOC, so he is happy to label his wines as Vin de France. 

It’s a very marginal climate for grape growing – he can count on losing some of his crop to spring frosts every other year. In 2021, he lost over 90% of the harvest when the temperature dipped well below freezing for several nights in April. All the grapes are hand-harvested, and the grapes are fermented in 20 to 50 hectoliter concrete tanks. He also uses some concrete amphorae for the Melon, and along with the occasional barrel. 

In honor of his location in Bretagne and its ancient Celtic history, Nicolas has named his cuvées after characters of Celtic legend – Arzur (King Arthur), Merzhin (Merlin), Gawain (a Knight of the Round Table), and Bohort (one of Arthur’s sons).