Longère – 2016

Update 22.3.2018(7.2.2018)billn

Tasted in Le Perréon with Jean-Luc Longère, 07 February 2018.

Domaine Longère
Le Duchamp
69460 Le Perréon
Tel: +33 4 74 03 27 63

Jean-Luc on 2017:
2017 was a year of paradox, because vignerons don’t like too much rain, but we were complaining because there wasn’t any – and that was after a very dry 2016 vintage! It finally rained on the 31 August – we had 70 millimetres here! Some had already started to harvest on the 28 August – the day of the ban des vendanges – I also did a small parcel for my Beaujolais Nouveau – but only there as I was beginning to worry that I might be making Porto! The rain boosted the vines and aided the grape maturity after the hydric stress. I only have 5 hectares but I harvested for 2.5 weeks in small tranches, waiting for each parcel to come to ripeness – we have 100 metres difference in altitude between the highest and lowest vines. I waited until about 5 days after the rain. Overall, apart from the drought – I’ll call it that – no maladies and no hail in this corner of Beaujolais.

Jean-Luc on 2016:
April was tough, though luckily the mildew also had bad conditions later, as it became dry and the steep hillsides didn’t support it so much – from April-onwards it was really super dry. There was some hail in the north and rain in the south, but here we had neither. Essentially it was a rather calm vintage. The early rain caused lots of early growth and lots of work the next rain really came only after the harvest. Fortunately there was a decent hydric reserve, so our yields were relatively normal. I’ve been here since 1981 and have only seen half a hectare lost to frost in that time.

“We harvested much later than in 2017 of-course. The Indian Summer meant that the vines were clean and we saw a slowly growing maturity – in the end it was about patience. If 2017 is the little brother of 2015, then 2016 is the little brother of 2014, and I think that 2016 is particularly interesting for the whites as it was such a long, easy, maturation.

“But we have a good series of vintages – 2012 a little less, but from 2013 onwards, that’s a nice series of wines…

The wines…

Simply a first-class address for Beaujolais Villages.

2016 Beaujolais Blanc
Two parcels assembled, the objective is ‘aroma, crunchy freshness and tasty fruit.’
An open, round and super-inviting nose – yes! Full, silky, really grapey flavour and super concentration. Certainly a wine of fruit with an interesting suggestion of minerality below and even a hint of finishing rigour. Not my personal style – but beautifully done – and long finishing too.

2016 Beaujolais Villages Blanc En Verchères
Have made whites here since 1995. This is the name of parcel – half a hectare of vines on volcanic rock with some blue stone. 35 year-old vines. Harvested a little riper. A little more than 80% stainless steel elevage the rest relatively newer oak – 1-2 years old.
A nice aromatic volume, more mineral and saline – a very different style. Mouth-filling again, much more mineral, almost flashes of tangerine fruit, accented with salt. Wider and wider finishing. Really excellent, complex finishing – I like this very much.

Les rouges…

2016 Beaujolais Villages
9 day carbonic maceration, no oak – ‘to respect the gamay.’ 300m altitude on granite rose – ‘it’s pretty much the same as in Fleurie’ – bottled in the Spring after harvest.
The nose starts very fruity-gamay, swirling brings attractive flowers to the nose. Lovely wide, with a good concentration – deluicious purity of fruit, a hint of salinity. Cushioned texture. Simply a beautiful entry wine.

2016 Beaujolais Villages Le Vin des Roches
400m altitude, partial destemming. Bottled August.
More depth of aroma – a sumptuous depth of fruit too. Extra freshness – a little more direct energetic and complex. A fine weight of mid-palate flavour. Open and delicious. Excellent!

2016 Beaujolais Villages “Jarre”
Also bottled in August, from the same parcels as the last wine – the first press juice into the amphora – so this is the cuvée name chosen for the young wine I tasted in the amphora last year. Only 500 bottles – it’s not enough!
A wider, perhaps more complex, certainly more elegant nose. Ooh, like the nose, extra width, a little depth of texture, gorgeous fruit. A vibration of flavour in the finish – great gamay, great wine!

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