Tasted in Mercurey with Julien Bordet, 12th February 2015.
Domaine de la Framboisière
1 grande rue
Domaines Faiveley have 72 hectares in the Côte Chalonnaise; the majority is in Mercurey, 55 hectares, but they also have 5 in Montagny, 5 in Givry, and the rest in Rully. All the Mercurey vines are from the same sector, sitting between Mercurey and Rully.
Julien Bordet – the regisseur – has been here since 2008 and quickly embarked on replanting, since then he’s replanted about 12 hectares. The winery has also been significantly updated, with work that began last year – some of the office and reception spaces are unfinished, but the winery itself is done. They have rows of stainless-steel tanks (36 of them) and four wooden ones too – which can also be used for elevage. These new tanks are all thermo-regulated and have a mobile pigeage unit overhead, which Julien says is very different to before, and they can now work in the same way as the rest of the domaine in Nuits St.Georges.
All the 2014 vintage is in their new big cellar (made from the previous 3 separate cellars) 800 barrels – one wall is left to the mother rock with occasional vine roots showing too – très Ponsot! Barrel elevage here lasts for 12 to 14 months.
All the 1er cru vines are ploughed so there’s no weed control, though this is done in some other vineyards as they don’t have enough tractors! They are not Bio but ‘do the best for the soil management.’ For instance nothing systemic was used in 2014. “Some vineyards are definitely better now with ploughing versus previous weed control,” says Julien.
Julien on 2013:
“In 13 all the vines in the valley were something of a problem, but the slopes produced lovely fruit due to the saving September weather. It was a late harvest, the wines having a medium-pale colour, but there’s a very pretty top note of fresh red fruit, underneath a little more weight. Silky, not quite medium bodied, high-toned red fruit that’s rather intense and fresh, something of a metallic impression, but really interesting. The aromas become more floral…”
“For the 14s all Givry reds have finished malos, but the others not. It seems an interesting vintage like a mix between 10 and 12. The first good news was the quantity, second was the interesting quality – I’ve never seen such ripeness on chardonnay, clean and with no botrytis. Reds had to be much more precise in triage because of the drosophila…”
Despite their size – or maybe because of their size – one of the best addresses in Mercurey in 2013!
2013 Mercurey Framboisière
11 hectares. The vineyard is in a small valley so has multiple exposures and sub-plots so it’s not all picked at the same time, though elevage is all together. The oldest vines date from the 1940s. Some mid-slope vines are on limestone and the bottom has red soil and clay where the tannins come from.
Still a modest colour but with more weight and density of aroma. Again silky but this time with a little ripe tannic texture and a discrete undertow of vanilla oak. Lovely, wide and intense finish.
2013 Mercurey 1er Clos du Myglands
Like Framboisière this is another monopole, only about 100m from Framboisière, extending over 6 hectares. Again, this was not all picked at the same time, rather 5 lots but eventually all were blended. Vinification is the same for 1ers but more oak, 25-30% versus 15% used for Framboisière.
Slightly deeper colour, slightly darker red fruit on the nose too – very nice detail here. Really super-silky but there is structure that comes after but its ripe and really engulfed by the fresh, intense, oak padded fruit. Quite good high-toned length too!
South side of Mercurey where the soil is whiter and has more marl. Some parts look more interesting and has been labelled vieilles-vignes, which it really is, but it’s effectively the best parts of Clos du Roy.
Again modest colour but far from modest depth of aroma. Really lovely fresh width with some sucrosity and a peak of bright, slightly oaked flavour and perhaps a hint of oak texture too. But this lingers superbly…
2013 Mercurey 1er Clos Du Roy Vieilles Vignes
Faintly oaked nose – in 14 this was actually vinified in the oak vats. The main difference here is the detail and energy. Still fresh and intense but with a bigger brighter finish. A little oak texture and flavour to finish, but that will soon be gone. Impressive stuff.
2013 Montagny (Blanc)
All from same hillside.
A little fresh pineapple here. A hint of sherbet and the flavour stars narrow, but gets wider and has a nice mouth-watering character. Very simple but fine and refreshing. Virtually no wood used here.
2013 Mercurey Clos Rochette
Another monopole, sited next to Framboisière, but the two soils are different. In 2007 pulled out some pinot vines from this soil, so Rochette is the only Mercurey white today. 50% barrel aged, half of those were new barrels.
The nose is fresh and mineral, almost Chablis-styled. Direct, narrow, fresh but with a slowly growing mid-palate intensity. A modest, mineral, fresh wine but one that surprises with its finishing intensity!
Really stony, limestone terroir, looking for acidity, freshness and minerality so almost no wood used here.
A fresh but tight, perhaps mineral nose. Ouf – lovely width and intensity with a fine, sweet mouth-watering acidity that is again a little Chablis-esque. Really lovely finishing intensity – fresh and lovely wine. Yum.