Richard Rottiers – 2017

Update 20.6.2019(7.2.2019)billn

Tasted in Romanèche-Thorins with Richard Rottiers, 07 February 2019.

Domaine Richard Rottiers
La Sambinerie
71570 Romanèche-Thorins
Tel: +33 6 63 38 16 35

Before hitting the cuverie, we took a quick tour of Richard’s new vines, in particular his plot at the bottom of Moulin à Vent which has hail nets to protect his 65 year-old vines.”The vines were in a good shape, and I’m using the same nets as in Chablis – I didn’t have the budget to do all the domaine, in fact the nets have only just allowed otherwise would have had to label the wines Vin de France!

Richard on 2018:
A correct rendement, in fact a little more in Beaujolais villages – a great yield for organic viticulture – 40 hl/ha, it would have been more if it hadn’t been for the damage the vines suffered in 2017. A humid spring until May but that meant that things grew very fast – including some mildew – but the heat of June stopped that. A dry summer – effectively a quite easy year. Almost too dry until a little rain 10 days before the harvest – I did a fast harvest, starting 27 August and I don’t like to harvest too late and too ripe. There was a good week of harvesting – a second week would have been too late for me – 12-13° and no problems with fermentations.

Richard on 2017:
In 2017 we were ravaged by the hail in the middle of the year, but at least not the same problems with mildew that we had in 2016. What was left for the harvest was good fruit – but I had no Moulin à Vent as all domaine parcels were hit. A little more volume in 17 than 16, but again not in the MAV. I had to do a lot of triage at the vines as not all the grapes hit by hail had fallen to the ground – so we had almost a manual version of a vibrating table! All vinified fine though!

The wines…

Another difficult year for Richard, but he still some good wines in the cellar. Fortunately he has some volume in 2018!

2017 Beaujolais Villages La Sambinerie
Bright and wide. Hmm, this melts over the palate – fresh, red, not foully sweet, but with an engaging line of flavour. Weight of finishing flavour.

2017 Brouilly
Bought grapes from a friend, not yet organic but will be from 2019. All whole cluster, 14° from 35 hl/ha
More weight and intensity to the nose – dark and ripe but still with a balancing freshness. Depth, more layered, supple and with a nicely mobile flavour. Very persistent finishing. Delicious.

2017 Moulin à Vent ‘Foudres’
These vines not in organic as was first year of conversion. Looking for a lighter wine for immediate drinking – the second cuvée is for saving. 12 hl/ha
More width to the aroma – redder fruit too. Full, but open, ooh this is delicious but with a little sticky tannin, interesting depth of long-lasting flavour. Lovely.

2017 Moulin à Vent
This from the organic vines. Longer maceration, no pigeage, a grill for the completely destemmed fruit
A completely different register – deep – round – a profound nose. Ooh, an almost chocolatey depth of flavour here – not fat, not overly intense but a weight of delicious and balanced dark-fruited flavour. This is a super wine – always staying fresh and balanced! Bravo!

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