Tasted in Pontanevaux with Philippe Bardet and Jean Pierre Rodet, 11 April 2016.
Jean Pierre Rodet on 2014:
“2014 was a completely normal vintage; a September harvest, very clean, even approaching maximum yields n some areas. It’s a very good vintage but not exceptional. 2008, 2010 and 2012 needed more time before harvesting, whereas here we have slightly softer wines in 2014. After the problems of 2012 and 2013 we were very happy with the lack of rot and other maladies. Actually the vintages from 2012 to 2015 have not achieved the allowed yields for their appellations.
All Mâcon-villages are now in DIAM, the ‘higher’ whites remain in natural cork.
2014 Jean Loron, Mâcon Villages
Origin Montbellet east of Lugny in the direction of Tournus – a wide selection of villages in here. Assembled but not yet bottled – ‘Bottling is just starting.’
A very nice freshness here, faintly sugared and salted. Nice wide and textured wine with a good intensity of fruit – it’s a great way to start a morning!
2014 Château de Mirande, Macon Villages
A big property with 50 hectares. Apparently always just a hint less acidity here vs the other wines in the range; ‘It ripens very quickly on the plain, perhaps a hint muscaté.’
A more vibrant nose, yellower fruit, but with fine freshness, still. Mouth-filling, mouth-watering, a peak that’s saline-edged then a long line of flavour. Very attractive wine…
Fresh, mineral nose, a pretty depth of aroma. Big in the mouth, really mouth-watering, mineral, a hint floral – super texture, super wine. Yum! Very yum!
Asking for their own appellation – so would be just Lugny – it could happen in the next 10 years. If/when successful it’s only a question of which other areas will try to do the same… A different vinification here, looking for better acidity so the malo is only partially completed.
A deep nose, with faint nuts and salinity – yet proper with a sweetness of fruit behind. Fresh, some fat to the texture, almost layered, but with a super line of acidity. Complex finish. Very interesting wine – for absolute deliciousness I’d take the prior wine first today but I’m sure that this has a little more potential.
2014 Château de la Tour Penet, Macon-Peronne
Mainly sold through Nicolas.
Rather complex, fresh and floral with minerality too. Also very mineral in the mouth, complex with fine energy. A very rocky wine, almost Chablis-esque. Not the most delicious today – but still delicious!
Hmm a super high-toned width of aroma – very inviting, faintly floral fruit. From 3 different parcels, quite low. A little agrumes, lovely mouth-watering, faintly saline. Simply delicious wine!$$
A ‘very small’ cuvée. 6,000 bottles.
A mineral depth, ripe lemon in the mix. A little gas on the plate, super line of acidity, really wide, playing with the palate. A big burst of flavour in the mid-palate too. An exiting wine of good freshness and flavour. Yum
A wide and deep nose, some freshness and lots of florality. Very mineral base but with fine complexity of mouth-watering flavour. The balance of the two is fine. Yum! A super and wide finishing flavour.
Two 2015s to see:
“Had a little rain in Mâcon – unlike in Beaujolais – of course the wines still had inferior acidity so it’s a more technical vintage as we stopped many malos. Normally 4.5 grams of mallic in the grapes, but it was 1-2 in 2015. Neophytes love the 2015.”
2015 Chateau de Mirande, Macon-Villages
Ripe but fresh fruit; pear fruit. Mouth-filling, round, fine texture. More modest acidity but it sizzles along. Tasty, rich wine – and drinkable too.
2015 Chateau de la Tour Penet, Macon-Peronne
Really a massive aromatic – again with lots of ripe white pear fruit. Some gas today, layered, ripe but essentially not badly balanced wine, with hint of salinity and minerality to finish, almost licorice flavoured – an exceptionally powerful finish. I’m impressed.
‘Wines principally from Leynes. In the middle of the compression between the alps and the hills behind so a mix of Beaujolais and argillo-calcaire soil.’
A more modest, fresh and wide nose. In the mouth it has more direction, certainly more acidity and more obvious minerality. This stands its ground very well after the last two wines.
2014 Chateau de Balmondiere, Saint-Veran
A more composed, almost textured nose. Concentrated, layered, growing mouth-watering flavour, faintly saline – lots of interest here. Another wine that almost reminds me of licorice in the finish. Impressive if not the most energy here. Long, long…really a wine to age a little – impressive stuff.
2014 Viré-Clessé Vieilles-Vignes
A hint more golden. The nose has weight but is more subtle -100% from Clessé. A little mineral, lots of energy, fine acidity – hmm – the fruit slowly adding a sweeter accent. Excellent.
Here from Viré, bio. Only 30 hl/ha…
More greens and herbs and veg but ripe citrus too – a complex nose, if not the most attractive here. Round, nice energy, complex, some sweetness – a hint of the nose but really very tasty wine. I have the impression of a hint of asparagus in the agrume. But it Tastes really brilliant…
2014 Macon-Chardonnay Oak Aged
Almost 100% barrel but all were 2-3 years old. This is also used as a component in their bourgogne. Old vines, hand harvested.
The nose is wide and has quite some oak presence. Round, layers of flavour – really a big wine in the mouth, still with good acidity, but the oak presence is oppressive today – a nice salinity to the finish though – hopefully after 3 years this is purer wine – its certainly a big wine.
About 10% barrel elevage for this ‘for the complexity’ – still in tank.
A fine, wide, mineral-inflected nose, a fine floral impression too – composed and lovely. Big, wide, mouth-filling impression. Not super-energetic, layered flavour. Lovely finishing flavour. A wine that I think needs a year or two in bottle, but really lovely wine in the making.
Also in tank – and only tank elevage here.
A tighter nose but deep, slowly, begrudgingly offering some floral accents. Brighter, fresher, more points of energetic interest. This is really lovely in the mouth. Lovely fresh finishing – I find this excellent – lovely persistence!
Recently bottled. A mix of Solutré and Fuissé. About 35% oak though all fermentations in wood.
Deep, mineral, somewhat oak-rounded nose. Broad, mineral and energetic – ooh this is good! Full flavoured, mineral complexity and persistent too – lovely!
More golden. A hint of salinity to the ripe citrus nose, lots of deep and interesting complexity here. Mineral, muscle-flexing wine here. Really concentrated a flavour that seems to keep growingafter you swallow – needs a bit of air but this a fantastic. The air seems to increase the intensity.
2015 Château de Bellevue, Moulin à Vent La Roche
From barrel – malo is finished and the wine has been sulfured. Actually the 2014 will be bottled in about 3 weeks
Deep, layered, sinuous aromas of dark fruit – certainly impressive, accented with faint oak. Large-scaled but no fat, layers of flavour some texture of gas. Fine finish here.
Certainly a massive, pretty much opaque colour. Deep fresh aromas – profound in the English sense of the word – in French it only means deep. Simply assimilates your palate, fresh dark fruit, a certain drag of tannin. Really complex, with dark fruit and licorice, exceptionally long – pff!
2014 Château de Bellevue Mouiln à Vent La Roche
Higher-toned nose, faint pyrazine, deep, a very nice complexity of aroma. Still big in the mouth, a certain extra fressness and an intense line of flavour. Super finish too. Lovely.
2013 Château de Bellevue Mouiln à Vent La Roche
Finished harvest the 14 Cctober.
A good deep colour. Wide, complex, an occasional hint of oak – dark compote fruit, begging for a little cream. A little extra dryness Direct, saline, layered and intense. This needs time as the tannins have some astringence – I really like the fresh fruit though.
2011 Château de Bellevue Mouiln à Vent La Roche
A deep nose, more than a little mineral and graphite, faintly floral above. Mouth-filling, some sweetness, lots of intensity, high-toned fruits, some tannin still, fine persistent flavour – I’m liking this very much.
Deep, fresh, energetic – a simply gorgeous nose – I could sniff and sniff… Here is a wine of lithe muscle, energy, and still a Little tannin it narrows quickly but is clearly the most ‘ready’ – super wine.