This is a very special wine from a very special person. We've know Róisín for many years and have been wowed by her focus and vision in running this amazing project, and the quality of her wines.
This is a bright, engaging, ripe and mouth-coatingly-smooth red that maintains complexity, interest and tension. It is a delicious and delightful expression of this approachable and generous appellation.
This wine is made with 30% whole bunch fermentation, as is the case for most of Róisín's wines, adding floral notes to traditional summer fruit notes, while increasing the perception of brightness and fruit ripeness.
The grapes come from the village of Mercurey, in the north of the Côte de Beaune, which makes for bright, lighter and more complex grapes with a nervy tension fine tannic structure that makes it spectacular with food. It's declassified form the village appellation, which is why it keeps the price so low, and allows for potential additioin of grapes from just outside the village boundaries when needed.
Broadly speaking, Róisín gives her wines a very light fining and filtration in order to preserve the natural character of the grapes terroir as much as possible. Indeed, some of her wines are left completely unfiltered. For the winemaking itself, she uses concrete tanks or small vats for fermentation, but seldom made with new oak. In the vineyard at harvest, and in the winery, too, she does a massive amount of sorting of the grapes (called triage in the vineyard) which has sometimes reduced her potential output up to 50%, such is her determination for the best quality. The standards that she achieves has allowed her access to some of the best coopers and she now uses a mix of different barrel suppliers, buying more each of the last six harvests in which her wines have been made.
The grape suppliers for Róisín's wines are mostly all farming organically and in the case of this wine, the vineyard is in bio-dynamic conversion. The wine-making philosophy is very definitely hands-off and low-intervention, allowing for terroir and variety to shine. Regular trips to the region and long-term relationships with the growers allow for total control of the process, which again gives such scintillating quality. Certainly the reaction from the growers themselves is immensely positive and this has to be the highest form of praise one could wish to attain.
Róisín is not only a winemaker and micro-negotiant (which means that she buys the grapes rather than owning the vineyards), she is a full-time pharmacist in Ballyhaunis, County Mayo, and she is a Master of Wine.
Her enthusiasm for wine led to her turning a hobby into this incredible alternate life with, via lengthy studies that led her to work in Chateau Latour (yes, the Chateau Latour), Chateau Grillet in the Rhone, Geisenheim in the Rhein and Montpelier. A forensic characteristic is certainly the thing that comes to mind, yet not at the expense of being a jolly good person.
Grape(s): Pinot Noir
Style: Soft, Pure, Profound, Medium Bodied, Iconic, Elegant, Complex, Bright, Balanced
Best food matches: Venison, Veal, Trout, Steak, Mature Cheeses, Lamb, Hard Cheeses, Game, Fine Dining, Christmas Dinner, Cheeses, Charcuterie, Casseroles, Beef