Chateau Bonnet, Confidence de l’echevin, AOP Chenas, Beaujolais, Burgundy, France, 2010
Producers from the 10 Beaujolais Crus, each with their own appellation, label with the Cru name only, so separating and distancing themselves on wine merchants and supermarket shelves, from the gamay of Beaujolais nouveau and villages. Of course the Crus do offer something completely different, but a nice move anyway. A friend recently remonstrated with me that a Fleurie was a Burgundy (and so it is) and could not possibly be Beaujolais and gamay (thinking it was pinot noir).
This wine: varietal gamay of 100+ year old vines, aged for a year in oak barrel of 3-5 years age, natural cork closure, ex-producer, €14 (2015)
Consumer tasting note: a nose of spicy berries with a rich undertone of liquorice and chocolate; a sound acid-tannin structure supports the similarly rich and spicy mid-palate with more red and black berries, with liquorice and spice, leading to a good length with a moderate grip.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity ruby, showing tears.
Nose: clean, medium (+) intensity, developing, with aromas as they come, of liquorice, smoke, slightly lifted spicy stewed red cherry, a hint of darker berries – black berry, toast, dark chocolate, tea rose.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, ripe medium tannins, medium alcohol and a medium body, medium intensity, a smooth texture, with flavours of black cherry, leaf hummus, stewed red cherry, liquorice, low-key toast, spice, dried fig, peony. A medium (+) length with a clean moderately grippy black cherried finish.
Quality: a very good quality wine, well structured with acidity and tannins in tune with decent intensity flavour, well-developed with complexity from oak and bottle ageing, with well-integrated oak, and showing an interesting tertiary dimension with dried and stewed fruits and chocolate; a decent flavour concentration but not outstanding, panning into a decent length.
Readiness for drinking/ageing potential: drink now, well-developed, and whilst it will not improve with further ageing, will keep for a year or two.