Tasted in Villefranche, 06 April 2017.
The village of Régnié-Durette has less than 1,000 inhabitants and gives its name to the Beaujolais cru of Régnié.
An area of 750 hectares are delimited as AOP Régnié, of which around 600 hectares are planted and further of which 428 hectares declared a harvest in 2016. The vines are roughly spread between 250-500 metres of altitude. There is much sand in the topsoil, but this area, like some of the better-known crus, has a base, mainly, of rather pink granite. There are plateaus (La Ronze), and a mix of more or less gentle slopes.
Régnié was only awarded its Beaujolais Cru status in December 1988 – so was previously classed as Beaujolais-Villages – becoming the 10th Cru of Beaujolais, but not for the want of trying on the part of its growers, who had campaigned for this for decades. So, being the youngest of the Crus of Beaujolais, this no-doubt contributes to the relative lack of knowledge surrounding the cru – perhaps it also contributes to a lack of consistency – in a vintage like 2015 I would have expected to be highly recommending a significantly higher proportion of wines than was the case for this tasting.
Medium-plus colour – modest in the context of 2015! A nose of depth and almost texture – deep red-fruited and faintly floral. Really mouth-filling – complex, with some floral as well as fruit references, and a super line of acidity. This is really a great start with nice intensity of finishing flavour and here it’s almost a little mineral. Excellent!
Deeper colour. Higher toned notes, silky dark fruit with the merest floral accent. Direct, fresh, super texture, darker fruited, quite exciting wine and completely different in character to the first wine – only some resemblance in the finishing flavour. This will be super but you should wait longer – I prefer the first, today…
Domaine des Capréoles, Cédric Lecareux, Régnié Diaclase
Heavy bottle, even deeper colour – close to saturated. The nose is more powerful and quite full – there’s nice fruit here but also quite a bit of oak padding. Wide, good freshness, a flavour that’s as much about the oak as the rest of the wine – but the texture and balance of this wine are excellent – it is mouth-wateringly long in the finish too. Good, but for the very patient! It even seems to stain the glass – I make an extra wash before tasting the next!
Raphael Chopin, Régnié Caprice
Another heavy, statement bottle. Deeply coloured wine. Fresh, deep, also herby wine. Lots of volume in the mouth, plenty of tannin too with some astringence – really a wine to put away in the cellar and forget for ten years – but the last notes in the finish are very attractive…
Domaine Ruet, Régnié Les Bois
Back to a more modest colour. Some warm red fruit, but otherwise a little tight. Bright and fresh in the mouth, really mouth-watering with a nice sucrosity to the flavour – a little saline too. A relatively easy wine but one that has a delicious and refreshing quality – juicy wine and quite yum – not a great nose today though.
Deep colour. Here is a slightly volatile nose, concentrated red fruit behind. In the mouth this has good volume and quite a nice texture though the volatile note of the nose can be found here too. The flavour slowly melts over the palate in an attractive way and the finish is lovely.
Quite deeply coloured. Deep and interesting – much more modest higher tones. Hmm – this has super flavour complexity, still some tannin to slowly resolve but hardly a grain. An extra dimension of flavour in the finish – always quite darkly fruited. Excellent!
Domaine Hospices de Beaujeu, Cuvée Marquisat de Vaudreuil
Also quite deep colour. A higher-toned nose of concentrated red berries – modest intensity but very nice. Fresh, moves well over the palate – with energy – a base of tannin. This is sleek and fresh wine but with fine depth – it lacks that extra dimension of flavour but tastes great in the finish. A very good wine, still.
An almost saturated colour. A very dark nose, deep and narrow. Volume and freshness in the mouth, a real depth of dark fruit, edged with dry tannin to accent the texture. Really a very young wine to wait for, but the finishing flavour leaches very attractive notes. This will be worth your patience. Very good!
Deeply coloured. Deep, macerating very dark red fruit, accented with spice. Deep in the mouth too, still with a macerating aspect, but there’s tons of concentration and even layers of flavour here – with beautifully controlled texture – there’s almost no astringence. This is a very big and very impressive wine – perhaps missing a little purity and certainly it’s very primary today. This may be worth your patience – potentially super wine.
A heavy statement bottle. Not too deep colour. The nose has more than a hint of cheese but lots of depth – not very attractive. Round, particular in flavour, but fresh and with plenty of depth. Long too. Not what I look for in a wine. I rinse my glass…
Domaine Jacky et Colette Gauthier, Vieilles-Vignes
Another heavy bottle. Fresh, higher toned, some herb over a silky red depth. Wide, plenty of energy – lots of fresh fruit, a hint bubble-gum in style – it’s very clearly from Beaujolais. But it’s attractive, tasty and still with a serious level of concentration and structure. Good in the finish – persistent and with a faint tannic grain.
Domaine Tano Péchard
Heavy sommelier bottle, not the deepest colour though. Lots of cushioned aromatic volume – dark fruited. Big in the mouth too – but fresh and with a mouth-watering, growing, concentration of flavour. Dark fruited, and long. A rasp of tannin in the finish. I find this good.
Domiane Striffling, Régnié La Ronze
A heavy bottle with a red wax top. Deep colour. An intense, herby, almost stewed fruit nose. Very silky to start but the tannin grows to change that – a similarly stewed style of fruit on the palate. No – but I love the packaging…
Deep, vibrant dark fruit, a touch of herb complexity too – lovely. Lost of volume here – vibrant, mouth-watering energy – almost black fruit, almost too much. But there’s a slowly mouth-watering side too – in the finish, accented with licorice – different, almost too much, but bravo!
Domaine de la Roche, C&P Thulon Nigay
Deep colour. Concentrated fruit – a width of aroma, almost a hint of reduction here, certainly muted in the higher range. Massive in the mouth, really insinuating flavour, layers of flavour here. It misses a little energy and I’d be interested to know the degree of alcohol here, but this is very impressive on a number of levels. It just needs a little more energy…
Deep coloured wine to match the heavy bottle. A tight nose – though with depth. Good volume, and again a wine with really massive concentration and a slowly growing tannin that tries, though in the end fails, to overwhelm. Not much more energy than the last, but it is partly saved by the prettiness of the melting, mouth-watering flavour in the finish – which is really lovely. This is worth a chance in the cellar but needs patience. It could be a lovely thing in 5-10 years.
Château de la Durette, Régnié Cuvée Les Bruyères
Oof – an even heavier sommelier bottle – I’m glad that I don’t have to deliver these! Nice dimension and complexity of aroma – dark fruited, an impression of silk and faint flowers. Big in the mouth – really lots of cushioned volume, great texture, the dark fruit is concentrated and just a little monolithic but it finishes with grace and interest. Potentially a super bottle if it opens with time – worth a try!
Domaine Lagneau, Vieilles-Vignes
Medium-plus colour. A nose heavily accented with herb – concentrated red fruit trying to push through. Nice volume in the mouth, and a fine texture. The red fruit has that herby accent here too but melts nicely over the palate. Lots of interest in a herby style…
Much deeper colour. Deep, red/black confiture nose – but with an attractive freshness – it says drink me! Big but very fresh in the mouth, concentrated, rather black fruit, with a lot of energy and an accent of spice too. Non-standard? Maybe, but it’s delicious!
Raphael Chopin, Régnié Gaia
Another big and heavy sommelier bottle. ‘Only’ medium-plus colour. A wide nose, missing a little depth but there’s a certain vibrancy here. Ooh – gas. Lots of palate changing tannin. A high-toned black fruit, almost gelée. Again a very different wine, and painfully young. But with a fine finish. Approach with care!
Château de Pizay
Deeply coloured. Dark fruited, really lots of depth, concentration but freshness too. Hmm, plenty of mouth-filling volume. Not a wine of fat, but rather good energy, again very dark fruit, slowly mouth-watering in the finish. Overall, good clarity and nice freshness, despite lots of material. Very good.
Dominique Piron, Régnie Croix Penet
Again, very deeply coloured. Deep and also freshly high-toned with a slight herby accent. Concentrated, quite intense too. There’s energy and a mass of upfront flavour that brings little joy, yet the last notes in the finish are both tasty and mouth-watering. If the finish is anything to go by, this should improve for the patient…
Domaine Matthieu et Chantal Rochette
Medium-plus colour. A nose of vibrant depth and the merest suggestion of something floral above. Hmm, in the mouth this is super, fresh, concentrated flavour melting over the palate, and a very nice line of concentrated red fruit in the finish. This is very tasty wine. Yum!
Domaine Jean Loron, Château de Pierre
A weightlifter’s bottle. Deep and round aroma, relatively tight. In the mouth the shape is good and so is the texture too, though the dark-fruited flavour has a slightly stewed aspect. Plenty of finishing weight before slowly fading.
Christophe Savoye, Régnié Cuvée Ma Confidence
Dark colour. A faint bubble-gum but more depth of dark fruit, accented with herb, on the nose. Fresh, good volume, a little more saline than most, complex too – particularly so in the finish. A little tannin is the last impression. Lacking a certain sucrosity or deliciousness today, but I like the overall shape of this wine.
Domaine de la Combe au Loup – Mézait Père et Fils
Medium-plus colour. A modest mix of herb, flowers and fruit, slowly darkening fruit with a hint of pyrazine. Supple, fresh, just a touch of salinity, a little more sucrosity than the last, with dark fruit that tastes great as it melts over the palate. This is a very nice wine indeed – yum!
Medium-plus colour. Quite a tight nose – just a suggestion of dark fruit. Nice shape and texture in the mouth – faint tannin and modest fruit that opens up in beautifully mouth-watering fashion in the finish. A nice wine…
Medium-plus colour. Another tight nose – only a faint cheesy note at the bottom of the glass. Good volume, plenty of energy, a suggestion of reduction to this wine – a wine that really opens out only in the finish – here there is nice dark fruit over the palate.
Dominique et Remy Passot
Dark colour. A mode volume of aroma, dark-fruited aromas. Much more interesting in the mouth, with delicious, complex, mouth-watering dark fruit. A great line of fresh finishing flavour too. The nose needs to open, but this tastes excellent!
Medium-plus colour. A bright, dark-red, faintly bubble-gum but attractive fruit. Round in the mouth, okay freshness, good complexity, a little salinity and more tannin. Really nice dimensions of flavour here. It needs a hint more energy but very tasty it is, and the finish is really super!
Château de Basty – Pernette Perroud
Oof! – big heavy bottle alert. Not too deep a colour. A nose of moderate interest – though essentially quite tight. A mineral style, good weight and complexity – freshness and energy too. It could certainly be more delicious – but time is on its side – the finishing flavour is good though…
Vignerons de Bel Air
Medium-plus colour. A tight nose. Quite good volume, an impression of reduction, tight flavour to start too but from the mid-palate onward this is really quite good – if the finish is anything to go by this has the chance to open out really well.
Heavy bottle, deep colour. Oof – that’s a deep and dark-fruited nose too. How many times can I say deep – the fruit is very dark, it’s concentrated and really needs time to open to show what it has, but the finishing flavour is really super and its long too. A long-term wine, but of great potential.
Domaine Mattheiu et Chantal Rochette
Also a deep colour. A slightly odd nose – more savoury than fruit – but given time there’s a wealth of lovely dark fruit that slowly comes to the surface. Big in the mouth. Mouth-watering and concentrated with decent freshness and quite some intensity. The rather impenetrable palate gives way to nicely mouth-watering and tasty fruit. A super finish and a monolithic start – one for the cellar, certainly not yet the table…
Vignerons de Bel Air – Domaine de la Margot
Deep colour again. Another tight nose – only a faint top line of salinity. Good volume and freshness, here with a more overt tannin – faintly saline again – another wine whose best attribute is the mouth-watering, finishing, flavour. It’s tasty here.
Domaine de la Plaigne – Cécile et Gilles Roux
Deep colour. Herbs and a pyrazine accent define this nose, only slowly in the glass does it become more floral and suggesting of texture. In the mouth, fresh, a little mineral, and with good width. The melting finishing flavours are the best part – again with a little characterful pyrazine. Yum.
A big heavy bottle and almost completely saturated colour. A macerating dark fruit compote – it’s fair to say that today it lacks elan! Big in the mouth, lots of volume, lots of concentration but actually lots of freshness too – really a massive wine, yet, it’s a wine with complexity and weight and even more importantly interest. Still no elan, but I think it displays great potential – I wouldn’t touch a bottle for 5 years, though – potentially bravo!