A stunning red that shows how much more can be coaxed from the Gamay variety than the traditional Beaujolais wines we know so well.
This is elegant, complex and really vibrant: fresh, with an intense nose of dark and red fruits, leading to a densely fruity palate with crunchy tannins and a long, crisp finish. It is a Gamay to adjust the quality and prejudice settings, as well as being a wine that we look forward to serving all year round, but especially on warm summer days!
Yves Cuilleron is a champion wine-maker of the Rhône produces some of the most exclusive wines in the region. He knows exactly what each plot is able to yield in terms of quality, style and character and in that regard is a master of all of the vines he tends. This wine is made from vines grown at high altitudes around the town of Bessey in the Chavanay sub-zone with its granitic and alluvial soils. Handpicked, de-stemmed and vinified in separate batches according the the plots in which they were grown, these grapes are treated in the same way that Cuilleron handles his single site Cote-Roties.
Minimal intervention allows for maximum expression as far as he is concerned, and that is what gives his wines such extraordinary character and quality across the whole range. Malolactic fermentation gives a creamier mouth-feel and reigns-in any over-exuberance from the zingy acidity found in Gamay, while the ageing for 8 months in used oak barrels to continue the softening of the wine's edges and adding no trace of wood characteristics, only a structure to showcase the grape's wonderful flavours.
Yes, just a note; this is now the 2021 vintage, which you might think is very youthful (to say the least). Well, it is; but these days that doesn't have such negative connotations as it used to: I'd always ask if it is ready for drinking; in other words, is there any aspect of the wine that isn't quite right, or that will be ironed-out, or better in a year or so. The answer here, because of the skill of the winemaker, is no! It's perfectly ready to drink and there is nothing I'd want change now. It will develop and change subtly in time, but it won't get any better, nor any worse.
2021 was a nearly perfect vintage in the Northern Rhone and while other regions may have struggled, the Northern Rhone saw the best estates prepared and able to handle the weather to their advantage, even with smaller yields.
Top producer Jerome Coursodon summed it up like this: "The great news is that the result is exceptional both in a normal quantity and in a classically chiselled vintage with great balance and acidity, with alcohol between 12 and 13.2. I can’t wait to watch 2021 develop over the years. It could turn out to be one of the truly superb Northern Rhone vintages for in some time, without the excess sun that we’ve been used to recently."
Region: Rhone Valley
Style: Vibrant, Organic, Medium, Fresh, Complex, Bright
Best food matches: Venison, Tuna, Tapas, Roasts, Poultry, Mature Cheeses, Hard Cheeses, Grills, Cheeses, Charcuterie, Beef, Barbecue