We've repeated Sancerre's sad story many times: unfairly associated with the oceans of industrial Sancerre poured at every bistro in Paris and San Francisco, a region is ignored by wine snobs everywhere, despite having (in its best corners, like Thomas-Labaille's plots in Monts Damnes) some of the finest white wine terroir on the planet.

An artisan like Thomas-Labaille makes exquisite wines that possess all the power, minerality, and refinement you would expect from a cult icon like Raveneau (whose kimmeridgian, chalky terroir in Chablis is strikingly similar to Monts Damnes). But even Labaille's top wine sells for a mere fraction of anything from Raveneau.