First edition means it's hard to get everyone interested. However, the fact that around 3.300 visitors from around the world were present means there is definitely an interest in this sector. The fair was pretty well organised, with several masterclasses and also an area, called the "Tasting Avenue", where one could freely sample the wines and then check on an app the price and location of the stand. Quite useful for the wine trade, indeed.
I met some excellent producers, including Domaine Taille Au Loup Jacky Blot, which I later visited during the wine tour of the Loire. I had the chance to meet the owners and really appreciate their philosophy. They are organic but they do not market that, rather focus on their own brand. That's I think the way to go because these days many producers are using the "organic wave" more as marketing tool than actual sign of distinction.What I loved about Jacky Blot was also their passion and true interest in terroir. Tasting so many different vintages, I could really appreciate the influence of the soil and the vintages. Their Chenin Blancs are really refreshing and I guess the real examples of cool climate wines.
Other producers that stand out include Bouvet, an excellent sparkling wine producer from Saumur. I really enjoyed their Rosé, fresh with strawberry notes, and the Rubis Excellence, lightly sweet red bubbles with red fruits notes, complexity and a perfect pairing for fruity desserts. Their whole portfolio is very interesting and provides great quality/price.
Other domaines that got my attention were:
1- Henri Bourgeois, Loire producer in Sancerre and Pouilly Fumé who also makes great sauvignon blanc wine in New Zealand under the name Clos Henri.
2- The small family-run Champagne domaine Naudet et Fils, which makes an excellent limited edition Blanc De Blanc aged in oak and made from soils in Nogent L'Abbesse called "Extra-Terroir" that is fresh and mineral.
3- Famille Lieubeau, which makes a fine Muscadet called Voyage Extraordinaire which features unique labels referring to the novels written by French writer Jules Vernes. Finally some different and exciting labels!
4- Gamay/Pinot Noir Villa Burgundia was refreshing with red cherry notes and differed itself with a characteristic label.