Tasted with Pierre Meurgey at the Château de Bligny, 08 October 2018.
Maison Pierre Meurgey-Croses
Château de Bligny
14 Grande rue
Tel. +33 98 18 32 9 04
Pierre on 2019:
“In 2019 I had the impression that I hadn’t been touched by the frost – though the village of Viré-Clesse had parts that lost 100%. But my lieu-dit – Le Mont – because of its hight didn’t seem affected, yet the flowering didn’t go very well. It was also cold at this flowering time – so, in the end, the yields were quite low, about minus 30%. St.Véran was also low – bringing in about 35 hl/ha – a ‘difficult’ vintage still normally delivers 45 here. So yes, less than we expected in the Mâconnais. In the Côte de Beaune, it was similar in Volnay yet Pommard had a decent volume. The rest very correct – 35-38 hl/ha but that’s still pretty low for Savigny! I certainly had to do some white triage – unusual for us – we decided to do that due to worry of oïdium but in the end it wasn’t as bad as we expected. There was a nice level of tartaric acid in the grapes – they had a lovely, tasty, freshness – no blocking of fermentations like we saw in some 2018 cuvées. I’m hoping for serene fermentations!”
Pierre on 2018:
“2018 – In general it’s a vintage that I’m much happier with than I was at this time last year when I thought the wines could be too rich. They have – in both colours – gained elegance, they continue to ‘affiné’ to gain in definition and precision. For now, the wines will stay in barrel. I thought the 2018s might be a bit fragile with the early fast malos but they haven’t ever needed a lot of SO2 so seem much more stable than was my worry. Globally I never thought I’d like the wines as much as I now do! I’m planning a racking in December for bottling the reds in January. The whites are in tank and will probably be bottled in December – all the malos were done.”
A good range here in 2018 – whilst some of the wines could handle a little more energy, there is nothing here that indicates the potential excesses of the vintage. A good address for 2018s.
2018 Savigny 1er Les Lavières
Second vintage for this cuvée – organic certified. No whole clusters as there wouldn’t have been the space in the tank. ‘It’s a nice, not too ambitious wine’ says Pierre
A nice, correct, medium colour. Round, faintly powdery, red-fruited and slightly touched by oak. Ooh – juicy, sweet, some oak again but as a spice rather than the main component. Plenty of finishing weight and length too – holds very well – very little Savigny herb here. Excellent.
From Premeaux on the hill, about 20% wc included here. Just under the big white house with Fevre painted on the side.
A deeper colour here. Ooh – a pure if almost cordial dark fruit with fine depth of aroma. Ooh – energy, delicious fruit – lots of of mobile flavour – a little bitters in the long finish – complex and completely delicious. Benchmark CdNV – Bravo – The Côte de Nuits Villages label lacks a certain identity – the geography is so wide – but it would be an easy sell if all were like this!
2018 Beaune 1er Les Vallières
The second vintage, the first was as a VdF. A brand name that mixed the names of Pierres’ 3 children, a blend of some Vignes Franches and Cras. With a very light pigeage.
A colour between those of the last two. Oh – that’s a fine red fruit and floral nose – so inviting! Mouth-filling, mouth-watering – I can’t think of something else that starts with mouth! But this drives the flavour, some fine structure, lots of energy, some minerality – wow – super Beaune in a mineral style despite the mouth-filling shape. Excellent.
2018 Beaune 1er Vignes Franches
Not organic here – 30% whole cluster.
Higher toned, lots of freshness, flowers too. More intensity – direct, pure – the structure is evident but brings an airy architectural feeling in the mouth. So juicy – like most here. Excellent wine again.
All destemmed – a function of the cuvée size – 50% new wood. The only wine with a later malo – finishing at the normal time of May…
More colour again but far from saturated. Less volume but clearly more concentration to the aroma – tighter – dark-red fruit held close. Vibrant – waves of flavour spreading out over the palate – faintly saline, dark almost liquorice inflected – no overt oak, More delicious sweetness in the finish than most, the bitters are hardly visible. Bravo – worth a search.
All grapes, like the previous vintages, were bought from friends of the family. The Mâcon vines were bottled between July and the end of August. All these wines with DIAM.
‘Wines can be heavy in Uchizy but this place has a minerality that slowly brings balance.’ No oak, all tank elevage, a small fining I think it brings a better definition.
A nice purity to this, despite a slightly exotic, almost smoky nose. Some gas but a mouth-filling volume – a modest width of mineral impression that supports the wine’s ripe fruit well and without any overt rigour. Tasty wine with good freshness.
2018 Viré-Clesse Vieilles-Vignes
A friend of Pierre’s mother – they were at school together – is a proprietor so this comes from him. Lieu dit Le Monts (not on the label) near Peronne/Quintaine. All 55-85 year-old vines – a little later ripening at this altitude. 15% of large format barrels, the rest in tank.
Ripe, also a little exotic, in the pineapple spectrum – very aromatic and quite opulent. Full, fresh, nice energy – more interesting in the mouth than the nose initially suggested – a fine grain of complexity within the texture of this wine – it’s very fine. A lovely and persistent finishing burst of flavour too…
As always here, from Leynes south of the appellation next to St.Amour – but this year a different parcel. Not particularly old vines, practically north-east facing, so less ‘solar’ than some. Majority tank elevage.
A much deeper nose – with some roundness to this aroma. Hmm – like the last the palate is so much more interesting than the nose with spiced fruit, minerally complex – changing, evolving and absolutely delicious again. A weight of finishing flavour here – bravo SV!
2018 Pouilly-Fuissé Vieilles-Vignes
Old vines from Pierres’ cousins. All barrel elevage. All from Pouilly, 6 parcels from the hillside, deeper soils at the bottom of the hill and some of the middle parcels are now considered premier cru.
Another wine with a slightly smoky impression – possibly the 10% new oak – almost a spiced quince fruit. Like the last two, a wine that is more interesting in the mouth – here with extra reserve, but the concentration and intensity is impressive. Full, persistent, faintly saline and very long – this needs more time to open – there’s not yet the effervescent character of the last wine – but it may also come. Anyway a delicious wine!
The following are all racked and in tank:
2018 Pernand-Vergelesses Blanc
One new barrel from 4 so 25% new oak.
An open nose after the PF – airy, fresh, more transparent – though the oak is also visible. Hmm, full, a fine weight of flavour here, layered, mobile and developing over the palate. Lovely finishing presence. Ooh – what a style change! Wait 12 months for the oak to fade – but here’s a delicious and fine balanced mouthful of wine!
2018 Pernand-Vergelesses Les Pin
Top of the parcel with direct south planting. No new oak
Ooh – that’s an inviting, vibrant nose – faintly mineral and agrume. More weight and concentration after the last, layered, nicely textured with an insinuating finishing intensity – there’s an extra richness to this wine but it remains very well balanced.
2018 Pernand-Vergelesses 1er Sous Frétile
More south-east facing vines – 50% new oak – ie one of the barrels is new.
This nose seems a hypothetical blend of the previous two – fuller, concentrated but recalling the fruit of the first. Ooh – vibrant and energetic – lots of energy here – no overt oak and super depth of finishing flavour – only at the end perhaps some textural influence from the barrels. Ooh – excellent…
Effectively a domaine wine (co-proprietor) but easier to retain the négoce label of the other wines. Unsurprisingly from Pernand, converting to organic.
There’s a little oak in the mix here but this remains an elegant and airy nose – it’s already telling me I should wait a few years – but with a knowing wink to the quality. Full, concentrated – a wine of density – but also an energy that cuts through all – a little suggestion of opulence to the texture, but essentially all is in good shape here. Tasty and clearly a wine of excellent potential.