Tasted in Premeaux with Alain Meunier, pictured with Sophie, 23 November 2020.
Alain on 2020:
“No frost, also not in 2019. It was a very early start to the growth after a mild winter – we had growth already in April. Confinement. Then warm and dry – we had some rain in May which helped and then a long period of heatwave that lasted until the harvest. Very little disease, a touch of oïdium but manageable, the result was high maturity with higher degrees, but the grapes were small, hence not a lot of juice. Our harvest started on 22 August and finished at the end of August – the same as in 2003. The grapes showed the heat more in 2003 as the heat was at the end of the maturity phase. In 2020 the concentration was as much due to the lack of water, but this concentrated not just the sugar but the acidity too – which was deficient in 03. No problems with fermentations. About 15% lower yields.”
Alain on 2019:
“Dry and warm too, though less impacted than in 20 as we had a little more yield. Good maturities but not to excess, again with very clean grapes – that’s 3 years in a row. 4 of the 19s are already bottled, a few more are prepared in tank and the rest wait in barrel.”
And Alain on the changes to winemaking since I last visited: “We have been organic and for thirty years now but my son, Louis, is doing more of the vinifications now, and he’s keeping some of the stems where I used to destem everything. A little longer cuvaisons too – but fewer manipulations such as pigeage and remontage – less cooling at the start – softer extraction – I agree it’s less brutal for the fruit. He’s also using about 60% less sulfur than I used to – we have less reduction and earlier malos as benefits. Racking is only done if required, right up to bottling – and with less new oak – that’s since 2018.”
I enjoyed what I tasted when I last visited – certainly a few years ago (2012!) – but today there is a combination of extra complexity and elegant sophistication that is beguiling – certainly, the vintage helps, but anyway bravo!
10% new oak for the regionals, more like 20% for the villages:
2019 Bourgogne Cuvée Jeunesse
Vines in Premeaux bottled three weeks ago. About 30% wc and 10% new oak
A full, round, red-fruited nose, becoming finer with air. Wide, nicely incisive starting, bubbling with energy. Freshness and a fine direction to lovely higher-toned flavours. Tasty and refreshing. Excellent BPN!
2019 Côte de Nuits Villages Les Leurey
From Premeaux, the bottom of the hills. This all wc…
Wide, supple, almost textured nose – low sulfur impression. Direct, fresh and silky. A subtle tannin at the base. Wide and floral finishing – give this 12 months or so but this will be very attractive wine. Lovely…
This one in Corgoloin and from higher on the hillside. One-third wc in this case.
Hmm, more clarity of fruit, darker fruit – faintly floral too. Full of energy, exciting to drink! A touch of salinity and lovely clarity of fruit. Bravo – such a fun and delicious wine with plenty of finishing power – Yes!
2019 Côte de Nuits Villages Les Vignottes
The other side of the road from the Clos de la Marechale
Darker fruit again, but with a finer clarity and energy. More depth to the flavour here – wide, slightly contemplative but excellent. More mineral style to this finish and again very long…
This bottled. An assembly of three parcels Condemines, Pas de Chat and Derrière le Four.
A little more sweet depth to the nose. More presence in the mouth, a little extra tannin too. Lovely mouth-watering flavour though. This to keep a little longer but it’s getting better all the time in the glass. Extra finishing dimension too – a blend of the mineral and floral.
2019 Nuits St.Georges Les Feurières
South of the village, but almost in the village.
My first impression is of some reduction – here from barrel – but then a lovely clarity of fruit and flowers – yes! More structured of course, but not overtly, neither is this overtly tannic – actually a wine of very fine texture. Very ripe tannin, there’s no astringency here. Wide and persistent. Simply excellent and indeed, rather elegant NSG!
>2019 Nuits St.Georges 1er Aux Boudots
50% new wood…
More width and depth – the impression of some CO2. Finely wide and attractive. Supple, beautifully shaped, no edges, and the flavour slowly growing and melting over the palate – a classy style to this wine – a wine that never shouts but offers both depth and sophistication. Super length too.
Next another bottled wine, just one week:
>2019 Nuits St.Georges 1er Les Chaboeufs
12 yo vines (2/3rds of the parcel) but from a massale selection of the vines – ‘they suffered in 2020…’
More of a panorama nose – very open, slightly floral. Wide, nice energy – quite open, a subtle grain of tannin at the base – but completely ripe – no dryness. A finish that opens out, very wide, very tasty. A quite different style to the Boudots. Yum!
Next two from tank:
2019 Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru
Chatelots and Feuselottes from tank, 75 yo vines here.
That’s a deep nose – slowly becoming floral with air. A little more structure to this wine – an extra tannin – grain but no dryness, wide, almost layered, flavour in the middle to finish. Persistent and with fine density. Give this a little time, I think an excellent wine awaits…
Another older vine.
This nose starting with more density but again taking on a more floral character with air. A more structural wine in the middle, a grain of tannin is present here – but neither large nor astringent. A big and very impressive density in the finish – wow – that’s impressive – intensity and still some elegance. That’s quite a wine. Last drops in the glass smell extra fine! Such a great finish – a wine of super potential.
The last two were tasted from barrel, and with a little over 60% new oak:
From behind the chateau across from Musigny – ‘I think we are well situated!’
That’s a big, deep, slightly reductive, almost a chocolate accent, the nose becoming wow floral – that’s simply a great nose. Beautiful texture, fine freshness and inner density of flavour – perhaps a touch of coffee from the barrel. Lovely texture – an elegant Clos de Vougeot for sure but lacking for nothing – unless you treasure the ultimate in density! Here you have, instead, the ultimate in elegant drinkability – bravo!
Also deep and suggesting a little reduction to start. Also floral, but a deeper, fuller bloom. Another level of mouthwatering style and elegance – silky wine that’s mobile and elegant. Like the CV not a wine of power but a wine to beguile. Search hard and you will find a little grain of tannin – but ultra-fine. More width and weight to this finish, again floral but again a different flower. Give me the CV for the next 10 years and maybe the RSV for the following 10 years.