Marthe Henry – 2019

Update 8.9.2023(24.12.2020)billn

Marthe Henri-Boillot 2020Tasted in Meursault with Marthe Henry Boillot, 01 October 2020.

Marthe Henry
3 Rue du Leignon
21190 Meursault
Tel: +33 6 30 36 22 99

I first met Marthe, in passing, when she came to interview David Croix during a previous harvest – perhaps 2014 or 2015. Today, she’s very active on Instagram, documenting her transition to ‘winemaker.’

Marthe is working from some very smart cellars in Meursault, the old domaine of her grand-parents – Domaine Pierre Boillot – the same as exploited by François Mikulski today. Marthe can explain further:

I always came here for holidays with my grandfather,” says Marthe “And I loved it. I became a journalist, and visited vignerons, reporting on the region. I decided to do Viti in Beaune and worked for a time with Caroline l’Estime – and wasn’t discouraged! Then for a time with Pierre at Domaine Rougeot. The family vines are all rented out en fermage. I didn’t really have the employee mentality, so started out alone in 2017 with 12 barrels, doing the bottling and the selling – everything. I am still all négoce but today have 75 barrels – I even have employees, but my preference is the work with the vines.

“All bought in must or grapes, but from friends, so I have the chance to work in the vines. It’s about finding the most interesting vines, doing a bit more each year. It was only 3,000 bottles in 2017 so all was sold to family, friends and restaurants, but yes, there’s some export now – but not everything in one basket. I’ve still got lots of contacts with restaurants and at the moment the sales remain not bad at those restaurants who are doing takeaways and offering good wines at the same time. My plan is to make about 70% white, looking for vines from Pommard to Rully the – the appellations that I like and know the most about – I’m staying local!

Marthe’s approach is that, currently, 80% of the grapes are organic, or in conversion, all old barrels, no racking, 18 months of elevage, and, if possible, the absolute minimum or no sulfur at all during elevage – “but if the wines need it, then of course. I’ve no magic recipe. The 2017s didn’t need added sulfur before the bottling for instance and it’s anyway a ridiculously small amount.” Natural cork used at bottling.

The wines…

A more than competent range of wines chez Marthe – a couple of the whites are really great!

2019 Bourgogne Aligoté
The only wine that’s in tank. Vines in Santenay. Planning a Spring bottling ‘but there’s no rule.’
Hmm, that has a very fine focus to the nose. Vibrant, delicious – ooh thats super aligoté – bravo! Long and gorgeous finishing.

2019 Bourgogne La Monatine
Potentially a Bourgogne Côte d’Or – but not noted on the label.
A nose thats’ vibrant, deeper, a hint reductive but attractive all the same. Vibrant again in the mouth, Meursault-style for sure, lovely texture but with freshness too – aided by a little gas in this case.

2019 Bourgogne Grands Gouttes
Vines between Puligny and Meursault
Again a small touch of reduction – more direct, fresh and flinty. There’s extra intensity here. Waves of fresh finishing flavour and of good density too – not a bit heavy – bravo! Less rich, more energy.

2019 St.Romain Combe Bazin
80-yo vines, hence, not a big yield
Lightly reductive but at the same time attractively mineral. Extra gas but extra energy too. Sherbet energy, fizzing with interest.

2019 Santenay Bievaux
An intensity of aroma – a weight too but with balance. Wide, exciting freshness. Complex in a delicious way.

2019 Meursault Sous la Velle
The first notes are like most of the wines here – faintly reductive, modestly sulfured but then comes the more classic Meursault ginger-spice – its a fine invitation. Wider, more weight but the architecture/structure is fine and open here.

Les reds:

2019 Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Vines in Santenay, 12.5° this year. All whole-cluster and at this stage just a hint of sulfur added after malo but that’s all.
Depth and complexity of aroma – dark fruited but there’s much to attract here. Mouth-filling, but open not heavy. Saline accented, with depth to the flavour. Fresh but with concentration – very tasty and perfumed finishing.

2019 Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Beaune
Slightly less colour. Perfumed whole-cluster elegance versus the frankness of the last wine. A little gas, a little extra tannin here – a wine to wait more time for. I love the width and the faintly layered delivery of flavour – my taste is this one! A lovely finish.

2019 Pommard
By the Route Nationale – Rue au Porc!
A higher-toned nose – whole cluster perfume to the fore again but really perfume. Like the nose, flighty, fresh, a wine of direction but not bad width either. Slowly growing with more density and finishing concentration. Nicely finishing too. Nice wine!

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