Volnay


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  • Bernard & Thierry Glantenay Volnay 2017

    £49.99

    “As usual, the 2017 Volnay Village includes two small premier cru parcels that Glantenay doesn’t wish to vinify separately, and it’s shaping up very nicely, offering up a fragrant nose of sweet cherries and berries, violets and orange rind. On the palate, it’s medium-bodied, satiny and supple, with an ample core of sweet fruit and a fine-grained, elegantly chalky finish. 89-91 points

    The disarmingly modest Thierry Glantenay is emerging as one of the Côte de Beaune’s most exciting producers of red wine. From his hillside winery overlooking the Marquis d’Angerville’s Clos des Ducs, Glantenay is producing a lovely range of elegant, pure and intense Volnays and Pommards that are increasingly consistent and stylistically assured. In the cuverie, he tells me, he is more and more content to let temperature and alcohol do the work of extraction for him, keeping pigéage and rémontage to a minimum; pressing is gentle; and élevage, without racking until the mise en bouteille, takes place in at most 30% new barrels. In the cellar, no matter which barrel you choose, the wines taste reliably wonderful: indeed, after my first tasting with Glantenay, some years ago, I was compelled to return a week later to verify that I hadn’t been imagining things, and that so serious a producer could really be so little known. That his wines sometimes take longer to bounce back after bottling than those of his peers, therefore, surprises me. Glantenay neither fines nor filters, but might the mobile bottling line he uses for the mise perhaps do a gentler job? In any case, the quality is not in doubt, and after the superb vintages of 2015 and 2016, 2017 is a worthy successor, in a lighter, more supple register, certainly, but with plenty of flavor and personality, and at last, available in normal quantities.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (01/19)

    In Stock

  • Bernard & Thierry Glantenay Volnay Premier Cru Clos des Chenes 2016

    £79.99

    “The 2016 Volnay 1er Cru Clos des Chenes comprises only older, 80-year-old vines that were whole bunch, around one-third of the blend, and the younger vines that were destemmed. It has quite a spicy nose with hints of Moroccan spices filtering through the red and black fruit and hints of sandalwood and sage. The palate is very poised on the entry with fine but firm tannin that lends it a Pommard-like personality. I like the salinity of this Volnay that gets the saliva glands flowing, crisp with an oyster shell finish that is not persistent but just very precise. It just needs a little more finesse to develop with time. Drink: 2020-2035. 90-92 points

    “We lost between 70% and 80% of volume in 2016 because of the frost,” Thierry Glantenay tells me as we taste in his house above the winery, a view of the panorama across the Jura and the Alps beyond obscured by winter mist. This is a winemaker who has been through so much in recent years, and yet he never lets it get to his equanimous personality. “In Volnay Brouillauds, where we have a hectare, we cropped nothing. We made a Volnay Village that includes one-third of the premier cru fruit from Brouillards, Les Lurets and L’Ormeau, and the rest comprises the village cru. For the Bourgogne Rouge there are just three barrels, whereas in 2017 there are 21. Fortunately some crus suffered less such as Volnay Caillerets and Pommard Rugiens. At the beginning there was serious mildew pressure but the weather became warm and dry and limited the attack. I am 80% organic but I used treatments around the time of flowering to make sure I had some crop. It was difficult for the morale working in the vines. We started the picking on 23 September and then picked over six days. The average yield was around 13 hectoliters per hectare although fortunately the major loss was with the generic red Burgundy instead of the premier crus. The vinification was normal. We did not have a lot of second-generation grapes when we went through the vineyard again one week later, but the first-generation grapes were very healthy, with good maturity. I did less whole bunch addition in 2016 than in 2015 because I did not want to take the risk with stems that might not be fully lignified.” Following Glantenay for several years now, I have always liked their approach to winemaking. It is such a pity that they have been scuppered by hail and now frost, yet there are always excellent wines to be found and 2016 is no different, particularly two of the surviving Volnay premier crus, Santenots and Caillerets. Fortunately his 2017 is more plentiful, Thierry mentioning that instead of the 9,000 bottles the domaine produced in 2016 there are almost 30,000 in 2017. Then again, that just illuminates the dearth of wines this year so grab what you can.”

    Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (234)

    In Stock

  • Bernard & Thierry Glantenay Volnay Premier Cru Les Brouillards 2017

    £64.99

    “The 2017 Volnay 1er Cru Les Brouillards exhibits beautiful nose notes of orange rind, wild berries, cassis and rose petals. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, supple and satiny, with a lavishly textural attack, melting tannins and a succulent core of fruit, concluding with a long finish. In 2016, this cuvée was so small that Glantenay included it in his Volnay AOC, but happily, 2017 marks its return to the range. 90-92 points

    The disarmingly modest Thierry Glantenay is emerging as one of the Côte de Beaune’s most exciting producers of red wine. From his hillside winery overlooking the Marquis d’Angerville’s Clos des Ducs, Glantenay is producing a lovely range of elegant, pure and intense Volnays and Pommards that are increasingly consistent and stylistically assured. In the cuverie, he tells me, he is more and more content to let temperature and alcohol do the work of extraction for him, keeping pigéage and rémontage to a minimum; pressing is gentle; and élevage, without racking until the mise en bouteille, takes place in at most 30% new barrels. In the cellar, no matter which barrel you choose, the wines taste reliably wonderful: indeed, after my first tasting with Glantenay, some years ago, I was compelled to return a week later to verify that I hadn’t been imagining things, and that so serious a producer could really be so little known. That his wines sometimes take longer to bounce back after bottling than those of his peers, therefore, surprises me. Glantenay neither fines nor filters, but might the mobile bottling line he uses for the mise perhaps do a gentler job? In any case, the quality is not in doubt, and after the superb vintages of 2015 and 2016, 2017 is a worthy successor, in a lighter, more supple register, certainly, but with plenty of flavor and personality, and at last, available in normal quantities.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (01/19)

    In Stock

  • Bernard & Thierry Glantenay Volnay Premier Cru Les Santenots 2017

    £72.95

    “The 2017 Volnay 1er Cru Les Santenots is showing very well from bottle, wafting from the glass with aromas of raspberries, wild berries, dark chocolate and burning embers. Medium to full-bodied, ample and enveloping, it’s supple and lively, framed by powdery tannins. This has developed nicely and will offer a broad drinking window. Drink: 2022-2045. 92 points

    As I wrote last year, the disarmingly modest Thierry Glantenay produces a lovely range of elegant, pure and intense Volnays and Pommards at his hillside winery overlooking the Marquis d’Angerville’s Clos des Ducs. In the cuverie, he tells me, he is more and more content to let temperature and alcohol do the work of extraction for him, keeping pigéage and rémontage to a minimum. He also gently presses the grapes, and élevage, without racking until the mise en bouteille, takes place in at most 30% new barrels. His 2018s have turned out very well, delivering generous, textural wines that remain structurally refined and lively—wines that will drink well young but also age gracefully. This under-the-radar estate comes warmly recommended.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (02/20)

    In Stock

  • Bernard Moreau Volnay Premier Cru Caillerets 2013

    £67.95

    The 2013 Volnay 1er Cru les Caillerets has a very floral bouquet with delightful red cherries and wilted rose petals, all very detailed and seductive. The palate is very well balanced, the one-third whole-bunch fruit lending a sense of transparency and detail. This is very feminine and fragrant – a beautiful Volnay. Drink: 2016-2028. 90-92 points

    Though I have been following the wines for a number of years, this was actually (perhaps unforgivably?) the first time that I have visited the domaine, located not far from the Château de Chassagne. I met Alec Moreau at the winery to taste through his 2013s: a vigneron with good English having apprenticed in New Zealand, subsequently starting work with his father Bernard in 1995 and undertaking his first full vintage in 1999. Their portfolio consists of their own vines supplemented by purchased fruit, although they undertake the harvesting of those parcels themselves in order to maintain quality, including the two grand crus.

    “The 2013 was a vintage that was hard from the beginning,” he explained, echoing the sentiments of practically everyone in Burgundy. “The spring was difficult and it was trouble getting into the vineyard to spray. Half of our 14 hectares of vine had to be sprayed by hand because we could not do it by tractor. The flowering was a bit late so we knew the picking was going to be likewise. When you have a hard vintage you have to make crucial decisions that would affect the final quality [of the wine]. We were supposed to pick the 3 October, but we picked the 28 September as we were afraid to lose some acidity and we could see a bit of botrytis beginning to develop. We only work with natural yeasts so alcoholic fermentation can sometimes take up to five months. This year it took 6 or 7 months to see which direction the wines would go. I feel that it is a vintage where the style of the domaine comes through, so it is hard to speak of a general style of the vintage. But I feel that it is a vintage to drink younger.”

    Readers will already know that I have a lot of admiration for the wines of this domaine that ought to be better known. Certainly in 2013 I feel that the vintage plays to their strengths within a consistent portfolio of white wines, the reds seemingly more affected by the vintage, in particular the Volnays that were missing a little substance. Still, there are many splendid white 2013s here that are clean and crisp, extremely focused and brimming over with minerality right down to the Bourgogne Blanc. Those on a budget should check out Moreau’s over-achieving Chassagne-Montrachet Village, those with more spare pennies, the wonderful, exuberant Chassagne-Montrachet Maltroie. The two Grand Crus are impressive although it is the Chassagne premier crus where the real excitement lies.”

    Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (216)

    In Stock

  • Jean Javillier Volnay 2019

    £36.75

    “Domaine Jean Javillier & Fils is the sort of estate that this wine critic dreams of discovering. Hiding in plain site equidistant between the premises of Coche-Dury and Roulot, this small domaine—producing a mere 20,000 bottles per year—does everything the old fashioned way. Farming vineyards that have never seen chemicals and which have been certified organic since 1971, Alain Javillier favors massal selections: “We tried clones in the past, but they are not as good; I’m only going to let you taste wines made from massal selections.” Reds and whites alike are harvested in small crates, with whites pressed in an old Vaslin mechanical press. The musts are chilled to 15 degrees Celsius, and Alain tastes the lees when barreling down. Twelve months maturation in barrel and four in tank ensue, followed by bottling by hand, by gravity. Reds, by contrast, ferment without temperature control, and only free-run juice is used. The result is chewy, structured whites with plenty of texture and dry extract and sumptuous, supple and exquisitely elegant reds. “Some people tell me I make red wine for girls,” Javillier remarks. The inspiration here is sound: the white and red Burgundies of the 1940s. How much longer can such methods endure? “Now everyone works faster and faster, we have more and more Chardonnay, less and less Meursault,” Javillier poignantly observes. Indeed, so unspoiled is this domaine, I hesitated to write about it. But any readers nostalgic for the wines of yesteryear, before the stylistic excesses of the 1990s and the subsequent reaction against them, will find them at this address.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (07/21)

    In Stock

  • Jean Javillier Volnay Premier Cru Clos des Chenes 2019

    £45.95

    “From vines planted in 1937, Javillier’s 2019 Volnay 1er Cru Clos des Chênes is superb, mingling notions of sweet red berries and plums with hints of orange rind, petals and spices. Medium to full-bodied, layered and velvety, it’s supple and concentrated, with melting tannins and a long, resonant finish. Readers interested in history will be intrigued to learn that, in 1945, a few rows of this parcel were damaged when a Sherman tank positioned itself here to fire on Wehrmacht forces near Beaune. Drink: 2023-2050. 93+ points

    Domaine Jean Javillier & Fils is the sort of estate that this wine critic dreams of discovering. Hiding in plain site equidistant between the premises of Coche-Dury and Roulot, this small domaine—producing a mere 20,000 bottles per year—does everything the old fashioned way. Farming vineyards that have never seen chemicals and which have been certified organic since 1971, Alain Javillier favors massal selections: “We tried clones in the past, but they are not as good; I’m only going to let you taste wines made from massal selections.” Reds and whites alike are harvested in small crates, with whites pressed in an old Vaslin mechanical press. The musts are chilled to 15 degrees Celsius, and Alain tastes the lees when barreling down. Twelve months maturation in barrel and four in tank ensue, followed by bottling by hand, by gravity. Reds, by contrast, ferment without temperature control, and only free-run juice is used. The result is chewy, structured whites with plenty of texture and dry extract and sumptuous, supple and exquisitely elegant reds. “Some people tell me I make red wine for girls,” Javillier remarks. The inspiration here is sound: the white and red Burgundies of the 1940s. How much longer can such methods endure? “Now everyone works faster and faster, we have more and more Chardonnay, less and less Meursault,” Javillier poignantly observes. Indeed, so unspoiled is this domaine, I hesitated to write about it. But any readers nostalgic for the wines of yesteryear, before the stylistic excesses of the 1990s and the subsequent reaction against them, will find them at this address.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (07/21)

    In Stock

  • Marquis d’Angerville Volnay Premier Cru Champans 2018

    £99.95

    “The 2018 Volnay Les Champans 1er Cru has an outgoing bouquet similar to the Taillepieds, albeit one with more intellectual weight and gravitas behind it. Black cherries, blueberry and light cassis aromas reveal crushed stone and undergrowth notes, all delivered with intensity and superb delineation. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly firmer, stockier tannins than the Taillepieds, darker fruit and grainier texture toward the persistent finish. I see this has having real long-term potential. Excellent. Drinking window: 2023-2050. 93-95 points

    “It was a pretty uneventful and easy season,” a typically sanguine Guillaume d’Angerville told me, as we tasted his 2018s in the ground floor tasting room within his maison that lies within Clos des Ducs. “There was an early flowering around 20 May. There was no significant mildew pressure and the vines reacted better than expected during the dry conditions. They are getting accustomed to it. They didn’t seem to suffer. We started the harvest early on 1 September. You know, the eight most precocious years have all been since I took over the Domaine from my father in 2003. We finished the picking after around five days. The vinification was unusual as the sugar levels were high for the yeasts to work efficiently and so a couple of malos took place during the alcoholic fermentation, which was not healthy for the yeast. So getting the wine to complete dryness was the challenge. Everything is de-stemmed, though for Volnay Frémiets I use a single 80 hectoliter vat and we ended up with more volume than that. So we used an additional smaller vat and in this we used 50% whole bunch that will be included in the final blend.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (01/20)

    In Stock

  • Marquis d’Angerville Volnay Premier Cru Fremiet 2018

    £82.95

    “The 2018 Volnay 1er Cru Fremiet unwinds in the glass with an incipiently complex bouquet mingling raspberries and blood orange with savory bass notes of woo smoke, loamy soil, espresso roast and raw cocoa. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, concentrated and lively, with a deep and tight-knit core, bright acids and a long finish. 92-94 points

    After d’Angerville’s immensely charming 2017 portfolio—which I’ll be revisiting in the spring, as well as going into a bit more depth about the domaine’s history and holdings—the 2018 vintage at this Volnay reference point is more muscular and structured, wines that will both need and reward élevage and bottle age. Stylistically, comparisons with the 2005 vintage wouldn’t be out of place, though I think these 2018s won’t be quite as youthfully unyielding as that year. As ever, the domaine has produced exemplary wines, and I warmly recommend them.

    As I wrote last year, followers of d’Angerville will be familiar with the protocol here: biodynamic farming, destemmed grapes, classical macerations and élevage in barrels—of which 20% are new, older barrels generally being retained for five vintages. These have always been seriously long-lived wines, but contemporary d’Angerville isn’t quite as backward and slow to evolve as the wines were in the days of Guillaume d’Angerville’s father. The use of barrels with a somewhat younger average age—even if percentages of new wood are very modest—gives them a slightly glossier patina, especially in their youth. But readers can expect more insights into this estate later in 2020.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (01/20)

    In Stock

  • Yvon Clerget Volnay Premier Cru Les Santenots 2018

    £59.99

    “The 2018 Volnay Les Santenots 1er Cru comes from the lieu-dit of Les Santenots-Dessous and is completely de-stemmed and matured in 20% new oak. It has a slightly earthy and more introspective bouquet compared to Clerget’s other 2018 Volnays, but no less compelling; lovely, pure mulberry aromas almost reluctantly unfurl with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent tannins and a fine line of acidity. Quite strict and linear toward the Pommard-like finish, which delivers wonderful tension and good length. Cellar this for three or four years, because there is great potential. Drinking window: 2023-2040. 91-93 points

    I had heard a lot about winemaker Thibault Clerget in recent years, though this was the first time that I visited his winery in Pommard. The winery here actually belonged to his great uncle, Felix Clerget, and Yves prefers making his wines here instead of his father’s winery in Volnay. I can understand why. It is a slightly shabby but pretty, quite atmospheric winery decorated with statues of St. Vincent and a beautiful double wooden door, carved in the 1950s by an ancestor, a tableau depicting various winemaking scenes. “The first generation of the Clerget family to make wine was in 1268,” Clerget told me. “I am the 28th generation. The last vintage of my father was 2009 and in 2010 and 2014 he sold the grapes to other domaines. I came back to the domaine in 2015 after studying at the Lycée Viticole, at Geisen in New Zealand, with Charles Van Canneyt (at Hudelot-Noëllat) for two years and at Drouhin in Oregon. There are currently six hectares of the domaine with one white under my négoce label.” I asked about the tenets he applies. He told me: “We need to distinguish the terroirs. I focus on small yields, 30-to 35-hl/ha is the best, using less treatments in the vineyard. However I don’t look for any certification. All the 2018s were racked one month ago and will be bottled in January, the élevage 12 months in barrel and 4 months in tank. I am using the Chassin cooperage for the whites and for the reds, Tremeaux and Rousseau.” I absolutely adored Clerget’s 2018s. I would go as far to say that here I found some of the finest expressions of Volnay, wines surfeit with purity, terroir expression, vibrant fruit and at times, quite ethereal levels of precision – remarkable given the type of growing season. Some of the cuvées are very limited in production, down to a barrel in a couple of cases, but do whatever you can to get hold of one. Who’s to bet against Yves Clerget’s name ranking alongside the likes of Lafarge in the future? Maybe it already does.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (01/20)

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