Tasted in Cray with Stéphane Guillemin, 23rd April 2015.
Domaine Stéphane & Lucie Guillemin
Tel: +33 3 85 23 03 22+33 3 85 23 03 22
Stéphane’s father also works with vines in Pouilly-Fuissé.
The domaine was created in 2003, while Stéphane was still working for the cave co-operative; he went full-time at his domaine in 2007. Lucie joined in 2009. Between them they do all the work of this 20 hectare domaine. Currently they commercialise about half in bottle and the rest in bulk. The domaine is a mix of fermage and owned vines. It’s 100% chardonnay here. Their exploitation includes the Château Péronne with its 9 hectares of vines en fermage. The rest of their almost 12 hectares are all ‘reasonably sized’ parcels says Stéphane, which reduces the potential amount of work.
They export nearly 30 % of their production – mainly destined for the UK and the US, but their principal market is France. Stéphane started with just one cuvée – a Mâcon Villages – and slowly augmented his range from there. The old domaine Péronne had contracts will a big ‘Maisons’ in the Côte d’Or, so Stéphane still honours those…
There is also a crémant made with their own gyropaletts, and even some hand riddling – only the disgorgement is made by a contractor. As for the winemaking, Stéphane uses a mix of stainless-steel, enamel and concrete tanks plus barrel elevage for particular cuvées.
Stéphane describes his approach as raisonnée, though given the size of the domaine there are still some chemical treatments for weeding – but he does this only every other year at the moment, and ploughs in alternate years. The size of their team also mandates that he does all his harvesting mechanically too.
All synthetic seals, beginning with one cuvee in 2009. Stéphane did some comparisons and eventually changed everything – with no problems he says! Everything bottled with a light filtration. Really a great set of wines at this address.
Ripe, with very attractive and inviting aromas. Silky, some fat and richness but with excellent balance – it really holds the concentration well in the finish.
Fresher a little more salt and minerals. More direct, again very silky, lovely mid-palate this is excellent – I like this very much – super classic!
2013 Mâcon-Peronne Vigne de Mortier
All barrel elevage. These are the oldest vines of the domaine, Vigne de Mortier being the name of the lieu-dit.
The nose is more compact, yet fresh enough – not much oak to see but certainly a ripe lemon core. Bigger in the mouth, less direct but with a slowly growing complexity. Perhaps a hint of barrique in the finish but not creamy-vanilla. Tasty and with a little extra length – though for sheer vivacity I prefer the last wine…
2013 Viré-Clessé La Verpaille
Also the name of the lieu-dit, a clay and limestone soil set in a mid slope. Elevage is in barrel.
Modest aromas of some width and just a little citrus. Here is a very different palate, silky as always, but with a wide perspective, sweet fruit and a little salt. Very tasty and extra long. A wine to contemplate..
A more penetrating, concentrated and not a little mineral nose. Fine and direct, a lovely line of flavour here that’s really mouth-watering and interesting. Hmm – this is beautifully balanced and really complex – excellent! Less contemplative today than the 2013…
2012 Viré-Clessé Clos du Château
Lieu-dit is the Château de Clessé; a friend has these vines and Stėphane buys from him – so négoce.
A more modest nose, with some width and a little richness of ripe fruit. Big, complex, good energy and with lots of interest and complexity here. Very tasty wine with super line of minerality, and a faintly salty tang in the finish. Very satisfying.
Attractive notes of reduction and nuts – fresh and fine. Big and round, clearly some richness, but it has fine supporting acidity – almost creaminess to the flavour. The reductive aroma has gone within a couple of minutes, flavour is excellent – now down to the last few bottles but great stuff!