The smoothest and most unctuous of the Cru sites that Boyer-Martenot produce, this wine is a scintillating version of what a top white Burgundy can achieve. Full yet balanced and never too rich or heavy, it has something of everything you'd look for in a wine of this calibre, yet, maddeningly, these are elements in this form that only this wine will ever possess.
One of Meursault's most famous, as well its largest, 1er Cru site (there are no Grand Crus in Meursault), this vineyard is right on the boarder with the village of Puligny Montrachet at the southern end of the village's reaches. And it is against the southern edge that Boyer-Martenot have their domaine vines in this vineyard. The name Charmes, comes from the name of the soil type there, "Chaumes", which has high levels of rocky, pebbly, schist and marl. This of course is part of the magic. It becomes more difficult for the vines to grow and they burrow deep into the soils to find more nutrients. The soils are deep and so too are the vines, most of which are over 35 years old. The depth of vine and the southern exposure on the Meursault slopes gives these grapes the best possible chance at becoming simply incredible.
In a vintage like 2017, that chance was more like a certainty. A long ripening season that was not too hot or cold, the harvest went right up until October in some parts.
The 2017s are wines that, like the 2014 vintage, will come out of themselves over the coming years, but, unlike 2014, this vintage is delicious and present right from the get-go. Bright and a little shy at first, after only half an hour being open, the wine is beautifully expressive: notes of hawthorn, marzipan, vanilla, toast and butter all develop, while the primary characters of white flower, orchard fruits and ripe citrus fruits are never lost. The potential for a big wine is there, but it is perfectly balanced by this delicious acidity that holds the wine's poise.
Meursault is a very interesting village for a number of reasons. It's a very picturesque place, but it's the soils that really mark it out. The limestone and marble from Comblanchien, at the end of the Cotes de Nuits, reappears in Meursault and because of its density it has allowed for cellars to be deeper than those of neighbouring villages. This has led to less rush to get wines to market as there was physical space to store them and this in turn has traditionally given a much richer style for Meursault wines as they always been able to age for longer. This is still true today (though there is absolutely no rush at all to sell the wines of Puligny or Chassagne!) and Meursault's richness is served well by its perfect exposure to south and east, allowing for long ripening and seldom any extremes of temperatures. No Grand Crus in this village, but 19 Premier Crus and individually named 'Climats' that are, in essence, a halfway house between Village and 1er Cru, thus pushing the value of 1er Crus considerably upward...
Style: Silky, Powerful, Mineral, Medium Full, Iconic, Fresh, Elegant, Complex
Best food matches: Mature Cheeses, Lamb, Hard Cheeses, Fine Dining, Charcuterie