Georges Duboeuf, AOC/AOP Fleurie, Beaujolais, France, 2013
Beaujolais is the southern-most outpost of the Burgundy region. It accounts for about 50% of total Burgundy production, where negociants and co-ops are important. The 10 crus produce the top-most quality wines.
Fleurie is one of these ten Beaujolais crus, sandwiched between Morgon and Moulin a Vent (both producing the fullest-bodied most age-worthy of all), in the hilly North of the region, on granite/schist soils. At this southern end of Burgundy the climate becomes more temperate, under the influence of the Mediterranean, though still continental at heart. The Beaujolais Mountains to the West restrict humid western air flows, and create a dry fohn wind giving rise to a distinctly warmer and drier climate than in Northern Burgundy, and the mistral wind which blows year round from the North refreshes and dries the vines, so reducing mildew risk.
Traditional red vinification methods are used in the crus, with bright juicy fruit, earthy and spicy notes, rather than the overtly lightweight fruity semi-carbonic maceration method wines of Beaujolais Nouveau. Some producers, Morgon for example, age in large oak casks. Nouveau has given such a poor quality name to Beaujolais, that many producers do not mention it on the front label, as is the case with this wine.
Varietal gamay, screw cap closure 13% abv, widely available, about £11
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity ruby, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, of medium (+) intensity, youthful, with warm and slighty high-toned aromas of red plum juice, stewed strawberry, black berry, a little spicy, with floral nuances, particularly violets, overlaid.
Palate: a dry wine, with medium (+) acidity, medium (-) fine-grained tannins, medium (-) alcohol, a light body, of medium intensity, with flavours of rich stewed strawberry and macerated red cherry. A medium length, with a clean red berried finish.
Appearance: a good quality wine, youthful and fruity, with good acidity and benign tannins balancing and lifting the flavour intensity. Of decent complexity and good concentration, which shows on the length, this wine is ready now, and will keep for 1-2 years but not improve with cellaring.