An old map of Beaujolais hanging in the Chignard cellars shows the lieu-dit Les Moriers of Fleurie ranked as a first growth in an 1874 classification of the region’s vineyards. This terroir has long been known to produce special wines, and tasting Cédric Chignard’s newly arrived 2017 confirms its status as one of the appellation’s top sites. From its lovely aroma, reminiscent of flower petals and ripe sour cherries, to the surprisingly rich, palate-coating flavor, this Fleurie beautifully combines high-toned finesse with a potent depth. Can a wine be delicately intense? Since at least as far back as the late nineteenth century, this has been the trademark of Les Moriers.
Tucked away up in the hills between Morgon and Fleurie, Chiroubles has often been described as “the most Beaujolais of the ten crus of Beaujolais.” In other words, everything that makes wines from this region so lovable—low alcohol, explosive flowery aromas, high-toned juicy fruit—are intensified in Chiroubles. “P’tit Max” Breton purchased some fruit here to compensate for the small yields in Morgon in 2017, and the new addition to the cellar is a made-in-heaven match with the house style. You’ll find no shortage of charm, gorgeous aromatics, and silky Gamay fruit to sink your teeth into, making his Chiroubles just about as swallowable as they come.
“Paul-Po” Thévenet came to master his craft in the 1980s under the mentorship of a certain Marcel Lapierre, a childhood friend who convinced him of the merits of organic farming and low-intervention winemaking. Thévenet uses these methods to create wines of purity and finesse with a distinct stamp from their terroir on the sandy lower-lying slopes of the Morgon appellation. His is a Morgon of great breadth, filling the mouth with weightlessness and ending on a trademark note of velvety tannins enveloped by ripe fruit. With age, it tends toward notes of faded rose petals and earth, not unlike a fine Barolo.
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