Tasted in the Château Bellevue with Tristan Larsen, 20 February 2019.
Château de Bellevue
Tel: +33 4 74 66 98 88
Tristan is here at the domaine for a couple of years now, having taken on the responsibility from Claire Forestier.
Tristan on 2018:
“Our first year separating some climat wines – also with new livery for the labels. We are now really concentrating on the Morgon – there’s still a Fleurie but we have no more Brouilly. 2018 was a canicule year which followed a great flowering – though the yield was still quite high – some vines produced grapes that were normal and concentrated, some with more volume and less concentration. I think the two together make a good balance – in fact I’m agreeably surprised with the quality of some of the wines, but we shouldn’t forget that this wasn’t an easy vintage to vinify – there is much possibility for highly variable wines, despite beautifully clean grapes.”
Tristan on 2017:
“2017 is a very sad vintage, with two episodes of hail – we had 100% losses in some places. I expected maladies after the hail but it was very dry and hot the days that followed, and I give thanks to the vibrating triage table for doing a sorting of dry grapes that probably wasn’t possible manually. The best I hoped for at that time were nice wines that would be drinking well after 5 years – in the end I think we have achieved more. We always do a small amount of destemming here and with the hail causing damage to the stems, there wasn’t going to be a change to that. Overall we lost over 60% of our grapes compared to a normal year.”
There is 15 hectares of vines here at the château, but they actually vinify 25-30 here as the Hospices de Moulin à Vent wine is also vinified here.
The first two wines have some structure that you should wait for, the second two wines anyway won’t be released for sale for almost 5 years – the result is the same then!
This is mainly exported and will keep its old label. Still in tank for bottling in the next 2-3 weeks.
A beautiful, clean red-berry fruit – gorgeous. In the mouth, round, quite supple but also a lot of structural tannin here. It will need much more patience than the nose suggested. Slightly saline, lots of slightly spiced complexity – this will be fine, but wait at least a couple of years.
2017 Morgon Les Charmes
2009 was the first vintage for this cuvée. Also in tank, also planned to be bottled in the next week.
A deep nose, darker-shaded fruit – a deep, floral perfume rather than fresh flowers. Big in the mouth, plenty of tannin again – a little more volume and fewer angles to the structure. Still a baby, baby wine. Fresh finishing flavour of subtly long flavour. Super, but, again, be patient…
From within Corcelettes – 0.5 ha, since 2018 these vines worked organically. A sample from barrel. This cuvée is normally held back for at least 5 years before it goes on sale.
Deep, a rounder nose, an accent of oak for sure, but there is a lovely fruit core to this wine. Fresh, supple, concentrated, a little vanilla, a little drag to the texture from the tannin – ooh – great wine here – but I anyway wouldn’t touch it for 5 years.
2010 was the first vintage for this cuvée – it wears the same ‘reserve’ label as the last wine. All barrel elevage, 20% new.
A deep colour. Wide, calm, sweet dark fruit. There’s an accent of barrel, but not a stark one. Fresh, sleek, driving, direct wine – ooh less generous than the last but melting with more complexity and a more granular tannin at the base – but still on a modest level. Open in the middle and finishing flavour. Lithe, tasty. Great wine…