Labruyère – 2016


Tasted in Moulin à Vent with Nicolas Mielly, 21 February 2018.

Domaine Labruyère
310 Des Thorins
71570 Romanèche-Thorins
Tel: +33 3 85 20 38 18

Nicolas on 2017:
2017 had an extremely good start, reminding us of the early and warm vintage of 2015 – it was fantastic right up to the start of July. Then came the hail, it was really dramatic, and it was really the heart of Moulin à Vent that was hit – it was much worse than in 2016 – parts 50-80% lost – but we had the luck that afterwards the vines remained vigorous and we ended up with a yield of 40-50% – but still it was such a shame as it was looking so great. In the end it came down to the triage because the damaged grapes didn’t all drop to the ground – so it was quite some work, but the vibrating triage table helped a lot from that aspect. The wine profile has a lot of 2015 about it so we will see…

Nicolas on 2016:
2016 also started well, quite precocious but a little later than we saw in the Côte d’Or. The frost was a big worry here, but fortunately there was no damage. There was an enormous amount of rain which was really the problem in April and May, which give a big boost all the maladies you can think of such as mildew – everyone, regardless of approach in the vines had a tough time because the rain really propagated the mildew – the domaine didn’t take the teravitis certification in 2016. Despite hail we made 35 hl/ha as it wasn’t so directly focused on our parcels. The flowering was very quick and we normally think the best vintages are often those with a fast flowering. The end of the season had super weather, still with a later harvest around the 20 September. But we have a concentrated vintage, classic and with elegance and finesse. The complexity is superior to 2014 I think.

The house of the domaine and cellar below it, are undergoing a full renovation – maybe next year all will be done.

The wines…

The first wines whilst fine, were not always showing their best – the last wine, however, was a tour de force!

2016 Bourgogne Gamay
In some markets it is easier to sell the wine without reference to the word Beaujolais – it’s a shame, but here is a wine made at the request of multiple importers. Here only concrete tank elevage, relatively younger vines, all destemmed, but all from Moulin à Vent – it’s not sure if this wine will be made every year, but if the market demands… This and all other cuvées will begin to be bottled at the start of April
Lots of colour. Deep nose, almost glossy dark-red fruit – narrow but the wine is quite cold! Not the most concentrated wine but it’s round, very fine textured and shows a modest burst of delicious flavour that gets better and better as you head into the finish – lovely length. About 25% lower price vs the ‘entry level’ MAV – potentially a bargain!

2016 Moulin à Vent Coeur de Terroirs Vieilles-Vignes
This label since 2012, a blend of parcels of 8-10 ha depending on the vintage. Predominantly from granite soils rich in quartz. Here with 50% cement and 50% barrel elevage 228 litre, predominantly already with 2-3 wines behind them at Jacques Prieur. 5-10% whole cluster, a blend of multiple parcels
Also deeply coloured. The nose is tighter, more compact but again there’s that glossy dark fruit aspect. Directly another level of concentration, very slight reduction, but depth of flavour and a width of mobile flavour – for an entry wine this is beautifully made, the flavours beautifully delivered too – excellent!

2015 Moulin à Vent Champ de Cour
1.7 hectares worth, of south-east facing granitic plot with clay. A parcel selection, where there is a little more depth of soil. The third whole clusters vintage – elevage in demi-muids – one-year-old.
A little less coloured. Here is a much more open freshness of aromatic, some perfume mixed with the herb aspects. Wide, energetic, layered – very open on the palate. The herb is a component here too but it’s just part of the overall complexity. A modest grain and lots of fine complexity – you should wait a couple of years, but this is a wine that will get better and better!

2016 Moulin à Vent le Carquelin
Share this clos with Jadot – On granite rose and sand direct south-facing, taking the name of the parcel like the last wine. 1.75 hectares worth. 15% whole cluster, elevage in 228 litre barrels plus demi-muids – maybe 5% new barrels. Here was the limit of the hail – would have made 25% more without…
Deeper colour again. Ooh this is a profound nose, supplemented with a hint of reduction, but all the same there is depth and class to the aromas here. The reduction is my first thought, the volume and fineness of texture come next. Such a super combination of aspects – plenty of concentration. There is more here yet without showing the complexity of the last wine

2015 Moulin à Vent Le Clos
A monopole. O.92 ha, 70 yo vines (the rest were all 50), sometimes worked with a horse. Unfortunately devastated in 2017. From the top of the parcel on what is basically decomposed rock – there’s no real soil. The vines sit below the Moulin.
Clearly not the most open nose but there is a depth of silky fruit that’s not augmented by any reduction. Round, über-fine textured, silken wine. Concentrated but absolutely elegant young wine. The balance here is impeccable. Great wine!

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