Tasted in Fleurie with Ophelia Dutraive, 19 February 2020.
Domaine de La Grand’Cour
Tel: +33 4 74 69 81 16
Ophelia on 2019:
“2019 was a rather a dry vintage but in August we had good rain – it probably saved the vintage! The volumes and balance was fine but it was hot at harvest-time so we had to harvest fast to minimise sur-maturity. We still had 13-14°, but with more balanced wine than in 2018 I think. The bottom of Champagne had a little frost, also in Brouilly we lost a lot – 40% perhaps in Brouilly.”
Such a good visit – airy, perfumed, complex wines – in 2019 too – some great wines for sure.
After two vintages, to all intents and purposes, without wine, not surprisingly the 18s are already almost finished here or all allocated. As you can see – the 18s are a little richer than their counterparts from 2019 – today!
First a few 2019s from barrel:
2019 Fleurie Clos de la Grand’Cour
50% barrel and the rest foudres. Grapes cooled before whole-cluster with some added CO2. Classic carbonic maceration, no intervention, no pumping over or pigeage. A little sulfur at racking.
Modest colour as always here. Bright, pretty, fresh red fruit – a depth that’s really attractive. Super in the mouth, with direction, florals, salinity and a moreish flavour. Good intensity. Long and so tasty… very long! This will be excellent.
80-90-year-old vines – a little more than 1 ha that wasn’t replanted by Ophelia’s grandfather.
Deeper, more concentrated, almost an old-vine creaminess. A little gas, fine and energetic, saline, complex – bravo! Deeper finishing – the previous more airy. This will be great.
2019 Fleurie Champagne
A mix of old and young vines 40 and 80-90. Harvested with separate elevage, but will be blended for a single cuvée
Wide, almost a little smoky and airy with florals too. Very saline, nice vibration of energy – vibrant wine. Oh, thats another fine finish – perfumed finishing.
Practically 70-year-old vines here. Half of this has stainless-steel elevage – ‘it retains the freshness’
A deeper red fruit – still rather airy versus many domaines. Bright wide, incisive, complex. Great energy. Airy, fresh complex – brilliant Brouilly in this style.
2019 St.Amour Clos du Chapitre
Quite young vines – a maison wine. ‘Always rather ripe here as there’s a lot of clay.’ All barrel elevage
A different style of nose – airy again but with a more vibrant red fruit. Concentration, supple depth and texture, faintly tannic, very fine-grained. More driving and mineral – its saline but less, long, slowly mouth-watering. Excellent.
And the 2018s:
2018 Fleurie Clos de la Grand’Cour
A little extra weight to the nose vs the 19s but the same width of fine red fruit and faint florals. Supple, concentrated, layered wine – that’s simply gorgeous – not the airy quality of the 19s but with more concentration width in return. This is simply excellent.
2018 Fleurie Clos de la Grand Cour Vieilles-Vignes
This had an extra month of elevage vs the previous wine.
Not as deep but more width of aroma – a little more emphasis on the floral here. More width again in the mouth, certainly more minerality showing. Extra complexity of fruit and flowers, more intense finishing – I’d actually wait for both of these while drinking the 19s! Excellent again
From bought grapes – they are the vines of Ophelie’s mother. This not bio like the domaine wines – it’s not easy as it’s so steep here.
A more floral depth – that’s a lovely invitation. Wide, mineral – a wine that seems to blend the best of the 19s and the 18s – there’s an open shape but with concentration behind – mineral, floral – perfumed finishing and ultra-delicious. Bravo.
But this is bio…
A little more colour. A big and open nose – inviting you to sip with round red fruit and some floral backing. Gas. Full in the mouth again – lots of salinity again – fresh and alive – this is great St.Amour – layered but always fresh and energetic. Bravo – I could drink all of this bottle no problem 😉 Bravo!