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Posts Tagged ‘Beaujolais’

Gamay for Thanksgiving

November 24, 2017 Leave a comment

For Thanksgiving this year I served six different bottles of Gamay all of which are currently available for purchase.  The 2015 La Dernière Goutte, Sang Neuf is the first wine I had everyone taste.  I must admit I was very curious to try this wine because it is imported by Jeffrey Snow of Glou Glou Wines.  Some of you may know Jeff from his days as a wine distributor in the Washington, DC, area.  A few years ago he moved to France for university which precipitated, based on the stream of vineyard and open bottle pictures I saw, some serious research.  Jeff is back in the area importing the wines he loves to drink in France. This first bottle I have tried of his is produced by Cyrille Vuillod who farms vines in St-Etienne la Varenne.  Vuillod does not add anything to his wine including sulphur dioxide.  They are bottled with the natural carbon dioxide as a preservative so there is spritz even after double-decanting.  Jeff writes of freshness and now I understand!  The 2015 vintage was very warm in Beaujolais but Vuillod’s wines, which normally achieve 11%-12% alcohol, came in at 13%.  The wine is surprisingly deep at first but with air the flavors become tart carried by some killer, crunchy acidity.  The wine is stable too.  Grab a bottle if you want to learn what freshness is all about!

As for the other bottles I served, the 2015 Guillaume Gilles, Les Massardieres confirms once again that it is an awesome bottle of wine.  The 2015 Jean-Paul Brun, Moulin a Vent Terres Dorees remained rather focused and tight all day.  It did develop an attractive, creamy finish but this wine is best cellared for a few years.  The 2015 Jean Foillard, Morgon Cote du Py certainly has strong potential.  Buy a few bottles for your cellar.  Of the 2016 and 2015 Lapierre, Morgon I preferred the 2016.  I really enjoy the sweaty, earthy components of the 2015 but it felt, in comparison, weighed down as the 2016 is crisp and vigorous.  All of these wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

2015 La Dernière Goutte, Sang Neuf – $26
Imported by Glou Glou Wines.  Alcohol 13%.  A slight spritz hangs around.  The wine is unmistakably, very fresh with almost crunch acidity supported the spiced red fruit.  The wine is deep at first but with air the fruit brightens up.  This is a textured wine with an ethereal expansion of flavor.  It is rounder near the end when it takes on tartness and weight. ***(*) Now – 2018.

2015 Guillaume Gilles, Les Massardieres – $25
Imported by MacArthur Liquors.  This wine is 100% Gamay.  Alcohol 13%.  Slightly textured with deep flavor of cranberries, red fruit, and a notion of minerals.  It becomes drier towards the finish with additional complexity from spices that last through the aftertaste.  Lovely.  **** Now – 2022.

2015 Jean-Paul Brun, Moulin a Vent Terres Dorees – $25
Imported by Louis/Dressner Selections. Alcohol 13%.  The wine remains focused with a perfumed start, red fruit, and minerals.  There are grapey hints in the tart, watering acidity driven finish.  It is lighter and drier in nature but with a surprisingly creamy finish.  It does not give up much right so is in need of age.  **(*) 2019-2030.

2015 Jean Foillard, Morgon Cote du Py – $40
Imported by Kermit Lynch.  Alcohol 14%.  This wine first reveals tart red fruit, grippy cranberry, and watering acidity.   After several hours the middle rounds out, the baking spices and acidity become integrated, and it develops weight.  It even takes a honied texture in the middle.  I think there is good potential here.  ***(*) 2019-2027.

2015 Lapierre, Morgon en magnum – $55
Imported by Kermit Lynch. Alcohol 13.5%.  There is mineral driven red fruit with some black hints.  The flavors are dense, somewhat low-lying, with a sweaty and earthy finish.  *** Now – 2018.

2016 Lapierre, Morgon – $22
Imported by Kermit Lynch. Alcohol 13%.  A good nose is followed by fresh and perfumed flavors in the mouth. The clean red fruit has grapey weight and a ripe, lifted finish.  Crisp compared to the 2015 vintage.  ***(*) Now – 2019.

Flavor packed Beaujolais from Domaine Dupeuble

The 2015 vintage produced one of the most substantial Beaujolais I have yet to taste.  One sip of the 2015 Domaine Dupeuble, Beaujolais will have you believe that Gamay vines are to be found in Chateauneuf du Pape.     Ignore that the 2015 vintage is not prototypical and instead enjoy this voluminous wine which will please not only your friends but your bank account too.  This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.

2015 Domaine Dupeuble, Beaujolais – $17
Imported by Kermit Lynch.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 50-100 years of age.  Alcohol 13.5%.  This aromatic wine offers bright aromas of almost jammy berries.   In the mouth is a surprising volume of focused red berry flavor, sweet fruit, and a mineral middle.  The watering acidity moves the wine to the purple and black finish.  It is a big wine, yet very tasty with an attractive thin layer of fat.  *** Now – 2018.

Exciting 2015 Beaujolais from Julien Sunier

November 15, 2016 Leave a comment

It is possible that my introduction to the wines of Julien Sunier could not have been better given that they are from the 2015 vintage.  I really like all three of his offerings and strongly suggest you buy them all. The 2015 Julien Sunier, Regnie is the wine to drink right now.  It is dark and earthy in flavor with plenty of texture and even fat.  You will return for glass after glass of tasty goodness.  The 2015 Julien Sunier, Fleurie possess the most intensity with gobs of grip and structure which will see this wine through many years of development.  You can drink it now, as an interesting comparison, but it is best left to age for another two to three years.  The 2015 Julien Sunier, Morgon strikes a middle point, crisp yet textured with deep-red rather than dark fruit.  It is not as fruity as the 2015 Lapierre, Morgon.  It offers more structure for development but I do not think it will develop as long as the Fleurie will.  Try them all! These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

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2015 Julien Sunier, Regnie – $30
Imported by Williams Corner Wine.  Alcohol 13.5%.  A bit earthy at first then raspberry candy and perfume.  In the mouth is a somewhat rounded start which builds to impressive flavor which slowly expands until the finish.  This is a supple wine, the weightiest of the trio, which matches the inky perfumed and dry aftertaste.  There is a balance of texture, fruit, and stuffing such that this wine will live for years but the the fat and dark, coating flavors are attractive right now.  ***(*) Now – 2021.

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2015 Julien Sunier, Fleurie – $30
Imported by Williams Corner Wine.  Alcohol 13.5%.  This is a more mineral wine with a dry start of dark red fruit which exhibits gobs of grip.  This is the most tannic and dry with a touch more yeasty flavor.  There are notes of stones before the citric, almost tangy finish.  It wraps up with a nice low, earthy tone (somewhat reminiscent of the Regnie) in the aftertaste.  **** 2017  – 2026.

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2015 Julien Sunier, Morgon – $30
Imported by Williams Corner Wine.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The brighter nose is perfumed.  In the mouth is deep red fruit, minerals, and good grip.  The tannins are there but so is a crisp acidity.  The wine is full of character with some density to the bright, crisp, and subtly spiced flavor.  **** Now – 2026.

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The 2015 Beaujolais madness continues with Bouland, Chatenay, Chiroubles

November 11, 2016 Leave a comment

The 2015 Daniel Bouland Brouilly and Morgon are big hits.  After extensive breathing the 2015 Daniel Bouland, Chatenay, Chiroubles proves to be no slouch either.  I tasted it alongside another bottle of 2015 Daniel Bouland, Vieilles Vignes Corcelette, Morgon which is clearly the more forward wine of the pair.  The Chiroubles is a bit backward at this point and is best left to age a few years before trying again.  It does have the potential to improve.  This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.

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2015 Daniel Bouland, Chatenay, Chiroubles – $25
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 40 year old vines on sandstone soils.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The bright, red fruit is initially tart but develops an attractive ripe texture.  The wine takes a few hours to open up, ultimately becoming a significantly textured wine.  Promising flavors do come out but the sense of tightness and structure could stand some time. *** 2018-2024.

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Recent French Wines

November 7, 2016 Leave a comment

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The time I spend on research continues unabated but I am still tasting wine every day. Here is a group of tasting notes from the most recently consumed French wines.  These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

2014 La Bastide Saint Dominique, Cuvee Jules Rochebonne, Cotes du Rhone – $18
Imported by Simon N’ Cellars. This wine is a blend of 80% Syrah and 20% Grenache.  The former was aged for 18 months in stainless steel tanks and the later for 18 months in oak barrels. Alcohol 14.5%.  There is a complex, meaty, black fruited nose which takes on a tobacco and smoke hint.  In the mouth are some bitter black fruit, coarser, spaced-out tannins, and that ethereal flavor consistent with this cuvee.  There is the meaty Syrah component but the wine tightens up with air.  Might rate higher with age.  *** 2018-2023.

2015 Camille Cayran, L’Elegante, Cairanne – $15
Imported by G & B Importers.  This wine is a blend of 40% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 20% Carignan, and 20% Mourvedre.  Alcohol 14.5%.  The nose sports good perfume, violets, and pepper hints.  In the mouth it is still a bit tight with focused blue and black fruit.  There is a dense, citrus, and powdery flavored middle.  It softens a touch with an inky finish and some fine pencil notes.  This still needs a year to relax the drying tannins.  *** 2017-2020.

2014 Olga Raffault, Les Barnabes, Chinon – $18
Imported by Louis/Dressner.  Alcohol 13%.  The floral, leaning towards vegetal nose makes way to black fruit flavors in the mouth.  Saline flavors give a sense of weight but tart, vegetal black fruit comes out.  This salty wine has edge acidity and is more for short term drinking.  ** Now – 2018.

2015 Herve Souhaut, Syrah, Vin de France -$27
Imported by Williams Corner Wine.  Alcohol 13%.  There are gentle, attractive flavors of violets and orange flavored fruit.  The dry structure is apparent from the start as is the moderately watery and juicy acidity which carries through the dry flavors of graphite in the finish.  The wine does come across with some vibrancy and with air shows that it needs time to develop.  ***(*) 2018-2023.

2015 Domaine de la Voute des Crozes, Cotes de Brouilly – $17
Imported by Kermit Lynch.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The nose is subtle yet bright.  The tart red fruited entry does build weight into the linear, citric acidity infused middle.  There is a touch of ethereal, ripe powdery flavors but that tart start never leaves one’s mind.  It finishes with salivating acidity and a ripe hint of citric fruit and tannins left on the gum. **(*) 2017-2020.

Age worthy Fleurie from Clos de la Roilette

November 1, 2016 Leave a comment

Patience will rewards those who purchase this pair of 2015 vintage wine from Clos de la Roilette.  I found them tight upon first opening so I waited another 48 hours before trying them again.  If you are considering laying down these wines you should just spend the extra $6 to buy the 2015 Coudert (Clos de la Roilette), Cuvée Tardive, Fleurie.  While it clearly needs age it already reveals more complexity on the nose and in the mouth.  Beyond flavor it offers weight and texture that feels good in the mouth.  It is more impressively put together so it will readily develop until the next decade.  At that point you should be able to drink it after pulling the cork and not days later.   These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

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2015 Coudert (Clos de la Roilette), Fleurie – $24
Imported by Louis/Dressner.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 30-40 year old vines that underwent semi-carbonic maceration then was aged in large oak foudres.  Alcohol 13%.  The tart red and black fruit is almost puckering and certainly brighter.  This is a the grapier of the pair but with the stuffing to age.  *** 2018- 2025.

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2015 Coudert (Clos de la Roilette), Cuvée Tardive, Fleurie – $30
Imported by Louis/Dressner.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 80 year old vines on clay soils that underwent semi-carbonic maceration then was aged in large oak foudres.  Alcohol 13%.  This is quite dark in the glass with a tangy nose of berries and complex potpourri.  In the mouth this is a dense, almost silky wine.  Perhaps raw silk is a better description for the flavors are textured and weighty.  Mulled berries take on blacker fruit in the finish as well as a licorice note.  There is a dose of fine, drying tannins in the end which will help see this wine through many years of age.  ***(*) 2019-2030.

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A pair of 2015 Beaujolais from Daniel Bouland

October 14, 2016 Leave a comment

The pair of 2015 wines I tasted from Daniel Bouland offer impressive levels of color and flavor at attractive prices.  The 2015 Daniel Bouland, Cuvee Melanie, Cote de Brouilly is the most forward, generous, and full-bodied of the two.  Tasted blind I would not guess Beaujolais due to the roundness.  While you can drink it now, I would recommend waiting until next year. The 2015 Daniel Bouland, Vieilles Vignes Corcelette, Morgon is even darker and to go with that, it is in need of age.  There is a core of dark fruit with a ripe, citric structure throughout, and tense acidity that will see this wine through development over the next several years.  I recommend drinking the Brouilly now while you let the Morgon age.  These wines are available at Weygandt-Wines.

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2015 Daniel Bouland, Cuvee Melanie, Cote de Brouilly – $25
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 70 year old vines on volcanic schist.  Alcohol 14.5%.  It is rather dark in the glass with a grapey color.  The nose offers youthful aromas of concentrated, grapey berries.  In the mouth it is rounder, quickly building weight with almost puckering acidity that grabs you.  It is balanced with citric tannins and a brighter finish that leaves tannins on the gums  ***(*) Now – 2021.

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2015 Daniel Bouland, Vieilles Vignes Corcelette, Morgon – $27
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 60-70 year old vines aged in both tank and foudre.  Alcohol 14.3%.  This is a very dark grapey-ruby color.  The offers low-lying aromas of dark red fruit.  In the mouth this is a structured, mineral wine with a core of grapey fruit and ripe citric tannins throughout.  With air the wine becomes attractively tense, building flavors until the earthy finish which leaves a dose of drying tannins.  ***(*) 2018-2025.

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A Trio of 2015 Beaujolais

September 13, 2016 Leave a comment

I am surrounded by Rhone-loving wine friends of whom Phil and Lou have extolled the virtues of young and old cru Beaujolais. Relatively new to this group, to me that is not his appreciation, is Bill. After a long lunch at Black Sal, Bill and I both walked over to MacArthur Beverages to pick up a few bottles. Bill recommended I try the latest release of Marcel Lapierre’s Morgon.

The 2015 vintage is reportedly strong in many regions of France and based on three different wines I had this past week, it is a potent vintage in Beaujolais. In fact, I liked the 2015 Lapierre, Morgon so much I returned to the store a second time in one week so that I could share a bottle with my brother-in-law. He too is a Rhone lover but during long stays in France and Switzerland, he and his wife would travel down to purchase Morgon in bulk from cask.

During our lunch Bill described a limit in expression for Beaujolais which could be experienced at relatively low cost. The 2015 Lapierre, Morgon must represent that limit for a young wine. It is generous in fruit yet already complex, clearly a wine to drink within a few years than one to hold on to. What caught me is the crispness of the wine which makes for the perfect delivery of the flavor. Stock up and start drinking!

Almost as impressive is the 2015 Chateau Thivin, Cotes de Brouilly, also imported by Kermit Lynch. For flavor think purple, black, and mineral. The acidity is dialed down in comparison to the Lapierre, making fine, cutting delivery. This wine is one to age for the short-term. Also in need of a little age is the 2015 Domaine du Vissoux (Chermette), Cuvee traditionnelle, Beaujolais Vieilles Vignes. Recommended to me by Warren, this is a finely textured wine, with focused, grapey flavors that should open up with slight age. I thought it drank best on the second night.

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2015 Lapierre, Morgon – $25
Imported by Kermit Lynch. Alcohol 13.5%. The nose reveals earthy waves of aroma mixing with vintage floral perfume that speaks of complexity. In the mouth the dense flavors are of spiced red and black fruit with just the right amount of lively acidity. In fact, the wine is almost crisp with a moderate structure for the rather short term. With air subtle, sweaty and earthy sweet fruit come out. One bottle developed a hint of banana whereas another was a touch more pure. **** Now – 2019.

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2015 Chateau Thivin, Cotes de Brouilly – $24
Imported by Kermit Lynch. Alcohol 13%. Darker, more purple and black fruit, remained focused throughout consumption. The wine is impressively mineral with a cutting vein of acidity. With good stuffing, this wine could stand a year or two to open up. ***(*) 2017-2022.

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2015 Domaine du Vissoux (Chermette), Cuvee traditionnelle, Beaujolais Vieilles Vignes – $18
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler. Alcohol 13%. This is a focused, linear wine with black and red fruit woven with moderate tannins. It is grapey in flavor with a little spice in the end where there is a finely textured and dry finish. *** 2017-2020.

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Best Beaujolais of 2009?

July 22, 2016 1 comment

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2009 Domaine Marcel Lapierre, Morgon
This very well could be the best Bojo of the great 2009 vintage.  Those who have written this wine off have not tasted mature bottles.  This wine has morphed from really good to great. Spicy red berry flavors with a good amount of tannin still there. Serious lip smacking minerals.  Really delicate yet powerful.  Each sip brings you back for another.  A wine of immense pleasure. Drinking well now but is still very young and will reward good cellaring for the next five or so years.  Yum. DB.

A Balanced Bottle of 2014 Chermette, Fleurie “Poncie”

From a slope so steep it can only be tended by hand the 2014 Domaine du Vissoux (Pierre-Marie Chermette), Poncie, Fleurie is perfectly balanced for immediate consumption.  The clean, grapey flavors are coated with some fat which makes this an easy wine to drink. This wine is available at MacArthur Beverages.

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2014 Domaine du Vissoux (Pierre-Marie Chermette), Poncie, Fleurie – $24
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler.  This wine is 100% Gamay sourced from 35 year old vines on pink granite soils that was aged for 6 months in used oak tuns.  Alcohol 13%.  The fresh, greenhouse tinged nose prepares one for the slightly fruity, clean red flavored start.  Texture soon develops with watering acidity that moves things towards tangy flavors and fat-like body.  The wine exhibits great balance with no edges from the supportive structure.  The wine, if anything, becomes grapier with air.  *** Now – 2019.

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