Tasted in Charnay-lès-Mâcon with Baptiste Duc, 19 February 2019.
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My normal contact here – Nicolas Dietrich – was travelling, so Baptiste Duc, who is the export manager chez Trenel stepped into the breach.
Baptiste on 2018:
Very happy with our harvest – the same concentrations as 2015 but with an easier harvest because it wasn’t as warm as in 2015. Quite prolific in terms of volume – the Beaujolais Nouveau was a little lighter but not the Beaujolais Villages Nouveau or the crus. They are wines that seem quite accessible right from the start – we are pretty happy with the result. It was our first vintage harvesting our own vines of Fleurie Madone – we did have them in 2017 but there was no harvest due to the hail! The Mâcons also had a good volume of harvest – useful as there is a steady demand for these wines, we have some flexibility as négociants but we actually vinify all the wines here too.
Baptiste plus Nicolas (last year) on 2017:
“Quite a structured profile to the wines from this vintage, some of our wines had a longer elevage. Some areas had climatic problems so there is less wine but generally the volumes were correct. 2017 was a bizarre vintage because there was the large incidence of frost – though mainly we weren’t touched – but it was more delicate in the south of Beaujolais where we have vines managed organically. Twice it hailed – for instance 1 hl/ha so effectively no harvest in some vines. It was therefore harder to buy and of-course demoralising for those hit in two consecutive vintages. The rest was fine with a good yield, if diminished a little by drought. The deeper soils with more clay had the bigger yields and with plenty of maturity. We harvested at the beginning of September and not in hot weather. Because we are buyers and made our contracts quite early we were able to make a volume similar to normal. It’s a good commercial vintage for us and we keep growing since purchased by Chapoutier in 2015 – most of that vintage is already sold.”
Some very fine reds, but the whites didn’t light my fire on this visit…
From Pierres Dorée, concrete elevage for part destemmed fruit. Main market for this wine – historically – is Norway, the monopoly there. The cuvée name comes from a significant volume that once came from a Domaine Rochebonne – and this name is still registered as a sort of trademark for the cuvée.
Plenty of colour. Fresh, sweet, not the biggest shape but attractive. Hmm, supple, growing in intensity, sweet and very attractive indeed. Really juicy finishing – serious wine – Bravo!
A place that’s hard to work and seemingly ‘has a name that’s hard to say outside of France, maybe that’s why it’s a slightly cheaper wine, but it’s our only cuvée with 100% granite terroir.’
Fresh, deeply mineral in a graphite style with sweet pure fruit in attendance. Hmm – lovely fresh, melting shape – a little structure but it makes for a mouth-filling and complex. Deep and concentrated in the finish – that’s a great finish – excellent!
‘We were able to buy some juice in the rare corners that weren’t hit too much by hail…’
Not the deepest colour, but the nose is quite attractive – sweet, wide, concentrated dark-red fruit. A little extra depth to the texture here – good concentration and a fine depth the the flavour – this is touched with a slight tannin – the most so far. A delicious, quite young wine that is balanced and very fine.
2017 Juliénas l’Esprit de Marius Sangoaurd
The cuvée name is of the principal supplier of Juliénas for many years who has since died.
More open, more depth of aroma – the latter touched by a faint but overall attractive reduction. Supple, restrained, slightly herbed complexity – growing more intense in the middle and becoming ever-wider on the palate. A good wine.
Vinified here, a single parcel in Paradis.
A nose of depth though not a particular standout here. Good volume in the mouth – a depth of flavour and texture too – one of the best so-far in this respect. Lovely depth and dimension of finishing flavour – layers of flavour here. A wine that starts a little anonymous but grows and grows in stature. If finishes in excellent shape but seemingly will take some time to fully open.
2017 Morgon Côte du Py
Actually from multiple parcels – part vinified here – plenty of whole clusters on the part done here. This and the following are the only reds that see some barrel elevage – up to 10%.
Hmm – a fine – fresh, direct, complex, faintly spiced nose – yes! A direct wine in the mouth too – but there’s concentration and great texture – a wine with the faintest of astringence to the structure – but that will soon fade. Layered again in the finish – it’s a big finish. Excellent, maybe even more with a little patience – super wine.
2017 Côte de Brouilly
One parcel for the last years – Le Pave.
A little tighter nose but with a slowly growing freshness and sucrosity impression to the fruit, almost a touch floral too. Supple – more open – really mouth-filling – there is more energy here, perhaps a touch more astringence too – but not too much. Another wine that grows in stature – the finish is large and intense. Very good.
2016 Juliénas Les Capitans
Note the vintage. Part barrel elevage again – this a tank sample – a cuvée made since 2015. To be bottled in another week or so…
The nose does not want to show itself here. In the mouth a little more subdued starting than the last couple of wines, but the depth of concentration and the depth to the texture is quite impressive. Tight flavours – this sample doesn’t want to show much today though…
Never made with bought yeasts, very little barrel for elevage too. All is ‘classic’ cork here:
2017 Beaujolais Blanc
From the southern Beaujolais. About 15% went through a barrel elevage.
Fresh – wide, a faint biscuit reduction – slowly a more sweet, crystallised fruit. Nice attack, good direction. Layers of more tropical fruit but never losing the drive and good energy. Nice.
2017 Mâcon Villages
Exclusively from Igé – it could have worn the label Mâcon-Igé. All tank elevage for this wine. Here no barrels.
A nicer freshness to this nose – a more attractive invitation. Direct, but supple – a good refreshing flavour and decent concentration too. A very nice finish almost with a saline suggestion.
A narrower nose but of good direction and freshness. Open – lots of mouth-filling volume here – growing in intensity too. More supple in the middle but with an impressively wide finishing wave of flavour. This is really good!
About 20% barrels and some of those were 400 litre barrels.
A riper, more exotic mix of fruit – but with plenty of freshness behind. More direct, more energy, and certainly more mineral. This has a citrus zest – the skin – style of finishing bitters that is very moreish – excellent – long too!
About 20% of this wine saw some barrel elevage.
Wider – ripe lemon style of fruit – but much less overt than the Viré. Round, but fresh with fine energy – complex, melting with good, fine-textured, citrus fruit. Almost a little lime bitters in the finish of this one – and it’s longer too. The Viré showed the more power today, but here is a little more class and complexity – but it’s a relatively ‘quiet’ wine today.
Three different parcels assembled to make this wine, about 50% of which went through barrel elevage.
Clearly a rounder, more barrel-inflected nose – yellow fruited. Supple, fresh, direct, lots of energy here – ooh that’s really fine – a touch of salinity too – I’d be waiting at least a couple of years for the oak to fade, but here is complexity, intensity and a great finish – excellent wine!
Three ‘climat’ wines, the first a 2016:
2016 Pouilly-Vinzelles Les Quarts
A relatively long elevage for this wine – 12 months in barrel – some new oak here too – about 30%. Different bottle shape and (black) wax-topped.
A deep nose and a nose of some width – a little saline, perhaps, but really quite tight. Supple, concentrated, wine of layers – a certain discretion – like the nose – but also a fine and complex wine. The oak is there but much more in the background than the last wine – you could already be happily drinking this by the end of the year. Excellent – but as noted subdued today.
2017 St.Véran En Terre Noire
From Davayé at the bottom of the Rock of Vergisson, all barrel elevage – 580 bottles from half a hectare in this vintage! A bio wine. Elevage like Pouilly-Vinzelles.
A more open nose, plenty of depth, a ripeness of yellow fruit. Extra volume, concentration and energy – there is a flavour here that reflects something in the nose – maybe it will lift with time – but I don’t like… I loved the 2016 of this…
2017 St.Véran Clos des Poncetys
Like the last a quite open nose, this certainly a little more attractive. Rounder but more direct and assertive – supple concentration, ripe citrus with a little creamy oak. Almost chewy in the finish. There is a lot of flavour here – I’m still looking for the freshness though. Very good but a long way short of great.