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Seguin-Manuel – 2012s

DSC02899Tasted with Thibaut Marion in Beaune, 28 Jan, 2014. We concentrated on the domaine wines.

Since I last visited Thibaut, he’s added two more chunks of vines to his domaine, he’s now managing 8.5 hectares. In 2012 there were 2 more hectares added, with vines in Meursault Les Clous and Pommard (Petits Epenots, Petits Noizons and Pezerolles). In 2013 came some Beaune Clos des Mouches from an uncle that had been farmed by Chanson, and also a very useful 1.8 ha chunk of villages Vosne-Romanée. The latter was particularly useful because Thibaut could sell a little and also exchange grapes for Gevrey Cazetiers, Chambolle Charmes and Echézeaux – really strengthening his Côte de Nuits line-up.

Thibaut on 2012: “It’s a really good surprise, given the trials of the growing season. We probably only achieved such maturity because there were so few berries. I find typicité and depth – I’m really confident of their aging capacity.”

Thibaut on pricing: “The domaine wines have increased in price by 5-10% in 2012. The négoce wines by more like 15% – though given that the those latter grapes went up by 30-40%, clearly we are far from covering the increase in our costs, and that’s before we consider the yields. Maybe we could have gotten away with higher prices, as many of the cuvées are already pre-allocated.”

The reds:

2012 Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Fruit from near the villages of Pommard, Volnay and Chorey. 100% fermented in oak but no new barrels – bottled in September 2013.
Medium, medium-plus colour. Powerful aromas of dark red fruits. There’s some tannin and a really impressive intensity for the label.

2012 Savigny-lès-Beaune Les Godots
Sited above Lavières. This is in tank, ready for bottling.
Medium-plus colour. Deep and impressive nose that’s surely augmented with a hint of reduction. A little too much CO2, but there’s fine red fruit, good intensity and a great finish too.

2012 Savigny-lès-Beaune Vieilles-Vignes
From three different plots whose average vine age is 70 – already bottled a few weeks.
The aromas are deep and impressive – but this time with no reductive additions. Lovely depth here and almost a 1er cur dimension in the mid-palate. The structures a little masculine, but this impresses all the same.

2012 Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er Les Lavières
Medium-plus colour. The aromas are wide and fresh, showing very dark-red fruit. Full, fresh and intense with lovely freshness of fruit too. Just a little saline halo here. Super stuff.

2012 Pommard Petits Noizons
These vines are above Charmots (above the village) and south-facing. First vintage chez Seguin-Manuel.
Medium-plus colour. In spite of a little reduction, this has a dark and exciting aromatic character. High-ish CO2 but that can’t hide a lovely depth of dark fruit and good length.

2012 Pommard Petits Epenots
Another dark and exciting nose though it’s augmented by a little reduction. Medium-plus colour. Mouth-filling, concentrated and with a good base o ripe tannin. Plenty of muscle here, but there’s nothing overblown.

2012 Beaune 1er Cents-Vignes
Medium, medium-plus colour. Some dark red fruits – mainly higher-toned notes. This is more lithe and elegant and with finer tannin – the flavour seems to hold a floral note too. Very, very pretty wine.

2012 Beaune 1er Champimonts
From the steep part of the vineyard above Clos des Avaux. “Lots of light here so always good maturity, the stony ground brings a more masculine wine.”
Medium-plus colour. The nose is dark-red and seems rather concentrated – there’s no reduction. CO2 and a little more mid-palate intensity and heft. Very much a baby this, it is completely primary versus the more complex Cents-Vignes.

2012 Pommard 1er Pezerolles
“Something of a curiosity” notes Thibaut. “There was nothing produced in 2013 and very little, 12 hl/ha or just one barrel, in 2012. These old vines, sited just above Les Epenots, had so few grapes and there were so many missing vines, that I’ll be replanting in 2014.”
Medium-plus colour. The nose is very deep but not so wide – it seems dark and glossy. Velvet, intense and with a growing concentration of fruit flavour. The acidity and flavour leaches from your tongue. There’s just a little minerality to finish it off. This is a super wine for these vines to sign-off with – I’ve ordered some magnums!

The whites:
Thibaut didn’t show the Savigny or Beaune Clos des Mouches whites because there are so few bottles.

2012 Bourgogne Chardonnay
From just one Côte de Beaune vineyard close to Meursault. All elevage was in oak
Its a powerful nose with some upfront pineapple. Good, slowly growing acidity. The mid-palate seems quite mineral but misses a little definition today. There’s a sneaky, creamy complexity to the finish, though.

2012 Puliny-Montrachet Les Reuchaux
This is Thibault’s second vintage, from vines next-to the Puligny cemetery.
fresh and energetic aromas with hints of pineapple and lemon. There’s more width and mid-palate density – quite impressively so. A very good finish here. This starts modestly but finishes with brio…

2012 Meursault Les Cloux
First vintage for this wine, from vines on the hill above the 1er crus. Lots of white marl here and half the typical yield in 2012
Wide, classic gingerbread, Meursault nose. Lithe and concentrated, the intensity grows – lovely flavour. 1st class – great juice.

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