Beaune 1er Cru `Les Grèves`

Côte de Beaune

Jean-Claude Boisset

Jean-Claude Boisset was radically transformed with the arrival in 2002 of viniculteur Grégory...

Patriat, one of the best viticulturalists/winemakers of his generation in Burgundy. Grégory had spent the previous three years working in the vineyards at Domaine Leroy and still spends a great deal of his time in the vineyards, paying his growers by the hectare in order to ensure low yields. He also prefers to work with organic growers, as he finds they produce better fruit. Unlike other Burgundian négociants, Grégory specialises in making wines from 'lieu-dits' or tiny plots of vines, something which accounts for the limited production of most of his wines.

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Vineyards

The word Grèves means sandy soil in old French, well-suited to vine cultivation. Grèves is certainly one of the best known of Beaune's 1er crus (accounting for 30 hectares). It faces east, taking up the full length of the hill along a gentle slope. This vineyard is around 70 years old and is therefore naturally low-yielding. The vines produce very small bunches of ripe, thick-skinned grapes, giving wines with great concentration. Grégory insists on stringent vineyard management to reduce yields further, including debudding and cluster thinning as necessary. No fertilisers or pesticides are used.

Vintage Information

Never has the phrase 'all's well that ends well' rung so true as in the case of the 2014 Burgundy vintage. Devastating hailstorms in June were followed by a cold and rainy August, where temperatures struggled to reach 20°C. These conditions meant that the threat of rot, under-ripe grapes and another low-yielding vintage hung over the growers. Just as all hope was fading, September was bathed in sunshine and rescued the 2014 vintage from the brink of disaster.

Vinification

The grapes were hand-picked into small, ventilated boxes and sorted at the winery. They were 100% destemmed but not crushed. Maceration lasted three weeks in open-topped wooden vats, with frequent cap treading by foot. Fermentation took place in 15 hectolitre casks. During fermentation, no yeasts were added. The wine was matured for nearly 15 months in cask without racking and with 20% new, lightly toasted, French oak. It was bottled without fining or filtration.

Tasting Notes

Fresh, with rich dark fruit and a little implied sweetness. Powerful with great structure and very fine flavours running through the core of the wine. Elegant and very long on the finish.

Vintage Information

Vintage 2014
Grape varieties 100% Pinot Noir
Region Côte de Beaune, Burgundy
Winemaker Grégory Patriat
Alcohol (ABV) 12%