Tasted with Marie-Paule Cornu and Olivier Montagny in Volnay, 09 February 2016.
Domaine Henri Montagny
1 Ruelle Saint-Étienne
Tel: +33 3 80 21 63 28
This is a 7.5 hectare domaine with vines in Pommard, Beaune and Meursault, but mostly in Volnay. As well as their nice house/cuverie in Volnay, there is a gite behind the house and they have a second cellar in Pommard for their stock.
This family are the only Montagnys in Volnay – the name probably originates from the Rhône – but here today are the third and fourth generations, with a fifth still in elevage! Marie-Paule Cornu (married name), like her father, was born here and has worked at the domaine since 2004. Olivier Montagny is the son of Marie-Paule’s brother. Marie-Paule’s father Henri Montagny began bottling in the 1950s, “And some nice bottles from this era remain,” says Marie-Paule.
Lutte raisonée in the vines, mainly concrete tanks, two triages and 100% destemming since 2009 – before that it was mainly whole cluster – 2008 was half destemmed. In the last couple of years they have cooled the tanks to delay the onset of fermentation. A mix if remontage and pigeage is used, ‘the wines have more colour today than before,” says Marie-Paule. Elevage lasts 18 months for villages wines, about 1 year for the regionals.
The wines are sold principally in France, and also in bulk to négoce. We make wines here to keep, so we are currently only commercialising our 2010s.”
I asked how their pruning was in 2016: “The fragility of the vines is physically improving, there’s more wood so the pruning and training is getting easier.”
The domaine has vines in Volnay 1er Cru Pitures Dessus, but these are sold to a négoce. They also have Volnay village vines in Grands Poisots, Les Combes and Les Famines, but Grands Champs is the only Volnay that’s currently commercialised from their holdings – and it’s a good wine.
2013 Volnay Grands Champs
0.20 hectares in Grand Champs. Older vines, average is almost 50 years old.
Medium, medium-plus colour. A wide, red fruit, faintly herbed, faintly floral. Round in the mouth, a good sweetness and depth of fruit. Nicely textured too – smooth tannins. Good length on a modestly delivered mouth-watering note. Very composed for a 2013 and very round and tasty too. Yum!
2012 Volnay Grands Champs
Medium-plus colour. Deeper, needs a little swirling and warming to dislodge a little reduction. Round, more concentrated, a growing intensity too. Fine red fruit, a little more tannin, some reductive flavour too. A nice extra dimension of flavour in the mid-palate to finish. This has potential; I’d prefer to spend a little time with it to see how that reduction fades. Seems basically a good wine. Nice length too. The last drops in the glass are clean and free of reduction – nice…
2011 Volnay Grands Champs
Medium colour. A forward note of peanuts, below a little red fruit. Narrower, lithe, peanut flavour again, a very faint dryness, but finely textured again – slowly mouth-watering… Lighter than the last two, today narrower too.
2010 Volnay Grands Champs
Medium colour. A lovely slightly warm, clean red fruit. Wide, fresh, vibrant – lovely energy – still some tannin below, but more of a textural drag than grain. A slowly growing extra mid-palate flavour – certainly not a powerful wine, but it’s elegant, clean and very tasty. Really lovely.