Tasted in Beaune with Geoffroy Choppin de Janvry on 18.02.2014.
Geoffroy on 2012: On average less than 20 hl/ha were produced. Geoffroy on the vintage: “I find it a classic, round, Burgundy vintage. I see similarities to 2002 and 2006 but with more concentration.”
Geoffroy on 2013: For instance in Beaune 1er Les Aigrots (next to Clos des Mouches), it was faster to take individual berries from bunches, than to cut whole bunches and then sort. From 1 hectare of vines, they managed to find enough grapes to make 1.5 barrels. Generally there was no punching down with these grapes, just “gentle, gentle, gentle…” as Geoffrey puts it.
Geoffroy on pricing: 2012 prices are up 5-10%, depending on the cuvée. The 2010 prices went up by a similar amount, but there was no increase in 2011. All the bottles of 2012 are already reserved. Geoffroy notes that he is trying make up some of the vintage shortfall by selling a little stock of older vintages, “but it will be much harder when I have to do it with the 2013s too.”
Geoffroy on winemaking in general:“I began in 2000, and previously my aunt had been using 50% new oak. I reduced this to 30% and did a little less punching down. Today we destem, followed by 20 days fermentation in stainless-steel, with some pump-overs. Not all the press wine is added back, and then the elevage is in medium toasted barrels from François Frères and Chassin.”
According to Geoffroy, six of these wines are already bottled, three are assembled and ready to bottle, and one is not quite ready for bottling.
2012 Pommard, La Rue au Porte
Bottled. A cuvée at the domaine since 2008. The vines are close to the Château Pommard. Geoffroy notes “They are really old vines but the soil is hard to move because there’s a lot of clay in it. I purposely do almost no active extraction, and reach no more the 29-30°C for the fermentation, to avoid extracting anything harsh.”
The nose is warm, dark and welcoming, perhaps with a faint spice. There is power but elegance – a fine combination here. A very lovely ‘villages’ Pommard.
2012 Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er La Bataillière au Vergelesses
Still in tank due to late malos. Will be bottled in 2 weeks. One third of this 1.8 hectare monople has been uprooted and will be replanted with chardonnay vines.
Just a little paler than the Savigny. There is still a hint of sulfur and reduction showing from the recent racking. The flavours is fine though, being brighter and wider. The tannin is a shade more astringent but it’s overtaken by lovely pure, fresh red-fruit flavour in the finish.
2012 Beaune 1er, Cents Vignes
Still in tank due to late malos. Will be bottled in 2 weeks. Saw the first mildew in years in these vines this vintage, we realised that our spraying wasn’t efficient in some of the steep sections – we went faster so didn’t spray enough! Now we’ve a computer controlled sprayer that adjusts the dose depending how fast you go.
Deep, fruity and faintly savoury too. There’s lovely depth of flavour here – with another dimension of flavour in the mid-palate. There’s velvet tannin, but not too much. Will be good.
Still in tank due to late malos. Will be bottled in 2 weeks.
There are high-tones overlaying the fruit aromas, high-tones that are almost floral – I think this will come. Wide and concentrated with a growing acidity, in-tandem the primary fruit is begining to show other faces and a lovely brightness. Nice energy and delicious wine.
2012 Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Only place in tank a few days agao and not yet sulfured. It is the ‘latest’ of the wines in terms of development.
The nose is more direct and has some minerality. Very good concentration with flavours that leach from your gums. Really long this wine.
2012 Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
In bottle just 5 days.
Wide and fresh and with higher-toned fruits than the Grèves. The palate starts with silk but tannin slowly comes through – more velvet as there’s grip but little grain. There’s concentrated, primary fruit that last long in the finish.
2012 Beaune 1er Les Teurons
The nose is wide with flashed of dark fruit and a slowly developing floral note. Lovely, lovely fruit, crunchy fruit, that has a halo of sweetness to it. Faintly mineral in the finish. Just lovely wine.
2012 Beaune 1er Les Aigrots Blanc
Also bottled last week.
Fresh, with concentrated bright fruits at the core and a slowly growing padding to the aromatic texture. Sweet, wide and comforting. There’s a growing depth of flavour from fruit that is faintly tropical – yet with a good underlying energy and acidity. A stony finish. Yum!