Tasted in Meursault with Thierry Matrot, 14 October 2015.
15 rue Martray
Tel: +33 3 80 21 20 13
Since I drank this wine, I’ve been looking forward to an eventual visit to this domaine; the label has hardly changed since that 1972, and I kind of like that strong link to the past. Thierry said, jokingly, he wasn’t surprised it was good, as he didn’t make it – he started at the domaine in 1976.
Here is an old family domaine in the centre of Meursault. The family Matrot have been in the region at least since the revolution, and were often connected to the vines. At one time the family had more fields than vines as they needed to feed themselves and their horses – only gradually did mechanisation bring the current monoculture of the domaine.
At one time there was also a family negociant business based in Meursault’s Château d’Evelle – Matrot Frères . Thierry Matrot’s grandfather separated the entities with his brother, his grandfather chose to take the domaine vines and his brother took the négoce business.
Today the domaine has 23 hectares but structurally comprises 3 domaines; Héritiers du Domaine Joseph Matrot (the grandfather), Pierre Matrot (the father) and husband and wife Thierry and Pascale Matrot who buy the grapes from the rest of the family. Today two labels exist in production; Thierry et Pascale Matrot, plus Pierre Matrot. I asked Thierry how many parcels he managed – “I can tell you it’s 19 appellations – that’s easier than adding up all the parcels!.”
Thierry on 2015:
“Low yields in 2015, some part of that must be attributed to the hydric stress, we actually had lots of grapes but without much juice.”
Thierry on 2014:
“2014 was complicated for maturity, as neighbouring vines were always a little different, unlike 2015 where everything seemed to be ready at the same time! Reds and whites have different characters; for whites it’s a year that’s complicated due to the weather, and not just the hail. But because of the hail there were different problems that led to yields of only 18 hl/ha in Meursault for example. Whites have a nice aromatic and those grapes that remained on the vines after the hail were always ripe.
“For reds, the style of vinification I used was not much maceration, and not much pigeage either. I was almost obliged to look for the fruit rather than the tannin in the reds as I don’t want to extract those tannins from the lower ripe grapes. We have good ripe tannins and wines that I find easy to drink and which will be enjoyed, even if not for long keeping. Good integration I think.
So, I think the whites a little better than the reds – though that’s my thoughts, only on my domaine.”
Some of these are about to be bottled, others are already in bottle. It’s a strong set of wines here, and in some instances, really very good wines indeed, ones worth searching for.
2014 Bourgogne Pinot Noir
From 4 parcels; one under Volnay, another from Meursault and 2 from Puligny – quite high limestone in these soils, so could equally be white wine terroir…
A direct, engaging fruit. Light in the mouth, but with very pretty fruit flavours, even a little tannin. More weight in the finish. A tasty wine that gets wider and wider in panorama…
2014 Maranges 1er Les Fuisières
Here is a very pretty aromatic of medium-dark fruit. More weight and so concentration too – also more tannin, slightly grainy but not astringent. Nice in the mid-palate with fine finishing flavour again.
From 2 parcels; in Hautes Brins and Sous le Cellier.
Less forceful aromatic, wider, and more complex if similarly higher toned. Lovely texture, the tannin is super-fine, wide medium, supple fruit this is excellent!
Also from 2 parcels; Boutonniers and Les Heptures.
Fresh, with high and low tones – less width, almost a floral note too. Supple a little jarring from an undertow of tannin, but more a drag than real texture. Now that’s a pretty flavour! Almost floral fruit in the mid-palate, into the finish. Great parts…
2014 Meursault Rouge
The worst treated by the hail – ‘the young brother of Santenots…’
A fine core of red fruit, circled by violets. Lovely dark red fruit in the mouth followed by tannin, though very well textured tannin, followed by a mouth-watering finishing fruit flavour that takes the fore again. I like this very much, but I’d wait at least 12 months before opening one…
2014 Volnay 1er Les Santenots
A tighter, but denser core of dark fruit aroma, slowly opening with a higher, floral note. Fuller, more concentrated, with tannin similar to the Meursault, and just the finest of grain but lots of weight. Wait 5-7 years says the maker!
No hail, so a normal harvest.
A fine, clear macerating cherry note. Round, concentrated, with very good texture and the impression of plenty of tannin without the texture of tannin – this is really the pick here, despite a seemingly modest energy today. Very fine complexity in the mid palate and finishing flavours. Yum!
No new oak in the 1ers…
2014 Bourgogne Chardonnay
Normally 80% home vines, so were forced to buy in 2014 as was ‘massacred by the hail.’ So only 30% home grapes in this vintage. Normally sourced half direction Volnay and half direction Puligny.
Modestly ripe yellow fruit, otherwise a little tight. Wide, a little lush but with nice growing acidity, seems a ripe year’s fruit here but with balance too. Tasty and with a little grapefruit tannin in the finish.
A fresher nose, wide but not deep. Here is freshness, energy and a growing intensity of flavour with an edge of sweetness to that flavour. A lovely lithe aperitif wine – very tasty – very lovely finishing lime note and again with a hint of tannic texture.
2014 St.Aubin 1er ‘Fleur de Côteaux’
Cuvée name for a blend of two premiers; Charmois and Embrazées.
Fresh, lime fruit nose. Fuller and with more weight after the Saint Romain, but a good underlying acidity that balances the richness. The best part is the finish with lovely mouth-watering flavour.
In 2014 a blend of 11 parcels that you could say reflects much of Meursault, north and south.
A riper aromatic, ripe lemon, with some width to the aromas too. Round in the mouth – certainly mouth-filling – but there is balance to this weight. A riper style here. Yet without any heaviness.
A really lovely wide, fresh aroma here that speaks of high-level Meursault. Fills the mouth yet stays fresh lithe and with good energy. Complex flavours. Long finishing… Simply excellent and leaves silkiness on the teeth afterwards.
‘Only’ about 20-25% lost to the hail. From 4 parcels, 75 % higher vines near Perrières, 10% from the middle and 15% from the lower section – normally. But in 2014, 90% from high and 10% low (where there’s esca) – the middle section was recently uprooted…
There’s a core of ripeness here but with a good coating of freshness. A ripe fruit element and also a hint of richness but this a supple wine of energy and ample weight. There’s real mid-palate complexity here, and a lovely intensity of finishing flavour.
2014 Puligny-Montrachet 1er Les Chalumeaux
Fresh and wide. There’s a weight to the silky texture, but below is an acid-led energy that’s bursting to be released. Wide panorama of flavour. A nice mouth-watering flavour too. Super wine, but today I’ve a small preference (small!) for the Charmes. Excellent.