Mathieu Cosme

Key Facts

  • Mathieu Cosme is 5th gen of estate (Domaine de Beaumont) founded in 1930
  • After father died, attended Vouvray's enology school to learn all he could
  • Teachers included natural pioneers such as Chaussard
  • Interned at Huet, where he learned practical application of biodynamics
  • After graduating, returned to family estate where his mother put him in charge
  • Immediately, carefully began implementing organics and biodyanamics
  • Within 5 years, gained reputation for excellence
  • Estate is 10ha hillside near the Loire with classic Tuffeau soils
  • Organic certified, biodynamic practices
  • Fermentation in small lots with native yeasts in neutral 400-liter oak barrels
  • Produces dry and sparkling Chenin
  • Press from La Revue du vin de France, PUNCH magazine

"Fifth-generation Mathieu Cosme has sparked new life into his family domaine. His ultra-dry, supremely fresh Vouvray from biodynamically-farmed old vines is brimming with high-toned energy and classic Chenin complexity." - Ian Cauble, Master Sommelier

The Story

For four years while in wine school, Mathieu Cosme worked as a winegrowing assistant at the famous Domaine Huet, the leader of biodynamic practices in Vouvray. Cosme recognized that Huet’s expertise in these methods was a big factor in their success. He observed that the work in the winery is easier when the grapes are perfect and perfect grapes only come from diligent work and care in the vineyard.

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Once he learned the ropes at Domaine Huet, Mathieu quickly transformed his family’s prized estate vineyards—part of Loire Valley’s protected Unesco World Heritage site—to become one of the most sought-after producers of Vouvray. Today Mathieu Cosme is named at the top of the list of Vouvray’s emerging young talents by PUNCH magazine.

When Mathieu was only 13, his father died and his mother was then forced to sell their grapes to the local cooperative so that she could afford to retain their highly regarded land. She put Mathieu through school to study viticulture and enology.

In 2005, after Mathieu received his enology degree and served his apprenticeship with Huet, he returned to his family vineyards. He quickly applied his expertise in farming to convert the vineyards to organic and then biodynamic. He gradually stopped selling his fruit to the cooperative, so that he could bottle wines from the estate, becoming the fifth generation of winemakers in his family.

Achieving a full aromatic expression of Chenin blanc is a primary goal of Mathieu’s; in addition to pure farming, he allows a longer than usual hang time before harvest. The process develops thicker skins and thus, more complex phenolic ripeness in each grape. Mathieu feels the reward is worth the weather-related risk that comes with longer exposure to the elements. Also with such astute attention in the vineyard, he is able to monitor acidity and obtain true balance at harvest. Farming organically with biodynamic practices, he remains unobtrusive to the vine’s natural voice. In the oldest lots—some 80 years old—he lessens soil impaction by working the vineyards with a horse in place of a heavier and more polluting tractor.

Tuffeau, an ancient chalky limestone dating back 90 million years to the Turonien prehistoric era, composes most of the rocky limestone slopes of his estate. At the top of his southeast-exposed slopes is more Silex, or flinty soil, where the Chenin vines grow for Le Fines Bulles, his sparkling wine.