Tasted high up in the Clos de Haute-Combe with Vincent Audras, 24 February 2017.
Clos de Haute-Combe
Tel: +33 4 74 04 41 09
Vincent on 2016:
“It’s a nice vintage and typical gamay too – like 2014. 2015 in the middle is fabulous and commercial but maybe a ‘mondial-style,’ – 2016 has less material and tannin but it’s more fresh and croquant. 2016 is a more refreshing vintage that you couldn’t replicate elsewhere. Of-course we had almost too much rain at the start of the season but the last part of the season was an inspiration, there was some hail in April which took the small shoots, then again a month later – a mini tornado – and overall almost 70% was lost. Lower down the hill in Juliénas, almost none was lost – it was very localised here – but of-course it was worse in Chiroubles!”
Vincent on 2015:
“Normally we talk about vineyards that are fine exposed to the south, we don’t talk much about the north-facing vineyards, but they were some of the best in 2015 as they didn’t have the direct afternoon sun and here was a little more volume. Only 20 hl/ha here – the same as in 2016 – so roughly a half-harvest in the end. Actually a very nice difference between the cuvées in 2015. Here in Haute-Combe is a rare seam of granite for Julienas, from above and below the house, and it worked well in 2015.”
Super wines here – not fat, with great lines, and despite how delicious they are, with sufficient structure to say, wait a little.
2015 Juliénas En Corps et Encore
Something of an assembly of different parcels.
Ooh, that’s both round and deep, red, and seemingly with a suggestion of much texture – super inviting with floral hints too. Fresh and cool fruit, a nice line but growing in volume and intensity – really a nice line in the middle, energy in the middle a super fresh flavour, slowly mouth-watering with a darker flavour. This has a little rigour but is also a delicious wine – but you should still wait for it!
This is the granite cuvée – a rock-type very similar to Fleurie.
A much more elegant and perfumed nose – floral, not too heavy. A super attractive nose. In the mouth, fresh again, more volume and more freshness vs that last. Underpinned with a little more structural tannin, nice mid-palate width of flavour too. Again a hint of rigour. Overall a little more elegance despite its youth – persistent again, delicious wine again, and to wait for – bravo!
Blue magmatic rock typical of Juliénas – some of the oldest rocks of Beaujolais.
Really a deeper and darker fruit nose, faintly spiced. Lithe, fresh, more layers of flavour, growing in width. A more overt concentration, slowly mouth-watering flavour. Ooh, the finish is ingraining and again completely delicious – dark flavoured with the tiniest point of attractive bitterness of tannin. Exquisite!
VV to be bottled in another 3 months or so… the others are all bottled.
A little alcoholic, fresher and more floral too. Lithe, fresh, a wine of line rather than volume. Modest layers of flavour, but it keeps adding more and more. A wine that’s a little discrete vs the the last, but the layers of flavour just keep giving. A narrow but very long line of flavour in the finish with a hint of salinity… Excellent stuff and the oak is largely imperceptible from a flavour perspective. Bravo!
13-14 days of maceration with pigeage, all destemmed.
The nose is automatically a little spicier – warm spice – over a fine dark fruit that could be gamay. A little more direct freshness, a fruit flavour that melts from the core over the taste-buds. Lots of freshness and lots of intensity – just a modest dry note of tannin. It’s a very tasty and refreshing wine – certainly very yum!
2015 Bourgogne Blanc
A nose that has a vibrant, golden, almost honey note. wide and fresh, nice layers of pretty flavour, mo hardness, and a good long finish, mouth-watering sucrosity and long. Yum!