Tasted in Moulin à Vent with Nadine Gublin and Michel Rovere chef de culture and 37 year veteran here at Labruyère, 17 February 2020.
310 Des Thorins
Tel: +33 3 85 20 38 18
Nadine and Michel on 2019:
“We started harvesting about the 12-13 September – a very small harvest, predominantly due to the frost in April – most of the vines looked fine but the frost had some serious effects – fewer flowers followed by coulure. So we started with not many grapes and that was before the hot summer did its work. So not much juice – lovely maturity but about 50% less.”
Nadine and Michel on 2018:
“Our harvest started 30 August – give or take a day – so the same timing as in 2017. No frost and for the first time in a few vintages, we had no hail. We had plenty of grapes but small grapes with not a lot of juice (again!) because of the heat – so lots of grapes but only 42 hl/ha because of the dry conditions. Sugars were high but the grapes and the wines that followed are juicy. The balance between solid material and juice was good in the end. All were destemmed in 2018 – I found the skins lovely and didn’t want to take anything away from that.”
You might occasionally find a Labruyère Moulin à Vent in the French supermarket, so I asked about that cuvée: “Yes there is one – it’s only sold during the foire au vins – so it’s just one time per year there are no permanent sales. It’s a cuvée that, unlike all our other wines, has only elevage in cement tanks.”
Like in 2016 & 2017 Le Clos is a tour de force – that’s great consistency! Otherwise excellent wines.
Nothing in bottle yet – so these were tank samples:
2018 Moulin à Vent Coeur de Terroirs Vieilles-Vignes
This label since 2012, a blend of parcels of 8-10 ha depending on the vintage. Currently racked into in Cement for last part of elevage – before that, in a mix of barrel sizes including some of 600 litres. To be bottled probably in April. Predominantly from granite soils rich in quartz.
Lots of colour. Deep, dark faintly reductive – but a round almost chocolate-edged fruit, suggestion a little floral with air. Open, energetic, fine intensity, a little graphite-style minerality. A wine of some power and modest finishing bitters – excellent texture.
2018 Moulin à Vent Champ de Cour
1.7 hectares worth, of south-east facing granitic plot with clay. A parcel selection, where there is a little more depth of soil. This not yet racked so is still in wood with a high proportion of 600-litre barrels. Harvested the 6th September – approaching 14°
A very similar nose to the first – just a little more open. Some gas. But still more volume in the mouth, no grain to the tannin. Extra intensity, at this stage it’s only the intensity that differentiates this from the last – but by quite a lot!
2018 Moulin à Vent le Carquelin
Share this clos with Jadot – on granite rose and sand direct south-facing, taking the name of the parcel like the last wine. 1.75 hectares worth. 70-75 years-old vines. 31-01 Aug-Sept harvested. Also still in elevage, not yet racked – all barrel, about 50% 600-litres, and about 10% of the wood was new. Under 14°
A little more complexity is showing on this nose. Almost some gas – pushing the tannin a little more to the fore. Wider, I think, less painful intensity too – more depth to this texture the reason. Saline and extra complex finishing – a wine with extra finesse. That’s really super wine. A touch of barrel in the finishing texture – but that tannin will fade quickly. Simply excellent.
A monopole. O.92 ha, 70 yo vines (the rest were all 50), sometimes worked with a horse. From the top of the parcel on what is basically decomposed rock – there’s no real soil. The vines sit below the Moulin. Harvested 5 September, also under 14° – it’s racked and waiting in tank – stainless steel as it’s a relatively small cuvée. All barrel elevage, 10% new.
Ooh – yes – now that’s a little more special, more complex and certainly more inviting. Not quite as mouth-filling, here’s a tight core of intensity, very complex, graphite, grainless tannin, some bitters, wide and super-interesting in the finish. All of these wines will benefit from at least 3 years in the cellar – only this last one seems assuredly great today, but all are excellent!