In our Burgundian village of Auxey-Duresses, my wife and I and some expat friends put together a rock ’n’ roll band we call The Auxey Morons. We’ve got an idyllic rehearsal space in the middle of the vines, far from any neighbors, overlooking a pond—the kind of place where, had we the time and the talent, we would write our grand opus. We don’t have much of either, so it’s more of a good excuse to get together, blow off steam, and get down to some music. To mark the excitement of our first post-confinement practice, I brought along a mixed case of Jean Foillard’s cru Beaujolais, and we all promptly dug in. The cork popped first from the Corcelette, and just like that, it was gone. “This cherry pie’s so damn good it’s a crime,” I could imagine Agent Cooper’s voice exclaiming, summing it up more eloquently than I. We quickly moved on to a few bottles of Côte du Py, named for Morgon’s famed extinct volcano, and Jean’s flagship cuvée. Despite our best efforts at moderation, it, too, went in a flash, with its irresistible sparkle, pepper, and iron. Onward we went to the full-on charm offensive of Eponym’, and by then Foillard was bringing out the sleeping Beaujolais in all of us. Laughter, joy, and camaraderie took the stage, and nothing else mattered much. By the time we got to Woodstock, I mean Fleurie, the dark black juice and spicy Saint-Joseph-style nose just sent us flying . . . or swimming, at least, in the pond. Thanks, Jean, and thank you, Beaujolais, for that. Sometimes these days, it’s needed.
The third and latest addition to Jean Foillard’s stellar lineup of Morgons comes from the Charmes lieu-dit, one of the highest parcels in the appellation. In contrast to the grandiose, deeply structured Côte du Py and silky-smooth Corcelette, this cuvée features a bit more crunch with lots of bright acidity and a leaner, more mineral profile. It nonetheless shares the satin texture of all Foillard Morgons, and should age similarly well for those willing and able to wait.
Foillard’s Morgons represent brilliantly crafted expressions of Beaujolais’ grandest terroirs. Technical details (available on our site) cannot adequately communicate this wine’s raison d’être—instead, consider a typical evening chez Foillard: Guests gather. Corks pop. Charcuterie emerges. Stories are told. Laughter rings out. Old vintages turn up. More corks are pulled. More food. Moderation takes a back seat. More laughter. Cheese. Sleep. And that’s what this Morgon—beyond its sweet, earthy fruit and sensuous, velvety texture—is all about.
Fresh hay on the nose, wet wheat field and moss. Light and living, charged with herbs, cranberry, and strawberry. Jean’s wines, like the Beaujolais itself, have a way of bringing you squarely home. Each cuvée is unmistakably from here. The wine smells like the earth right before it rains and tastes like the pine forests high on the hills and the wild fruits in the underbrush. With vines unaltered by herbicides or pesticides, and every grape cluster twisted from the vine by hand, this is pure Beaujolais, and there is nothing better.
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