Firstly apologies for the lack of posts over the last week or so, I’ve been off at the Len Evans Tutorial in the Hunter Valley and while I’ll be writing up some of the amazing wines I tried there in the near future, I thought I’d pen some thoughts on this lovely Saint Aubin from Phillipe Pacelet that I had last night.
Saint-Aubin is one of those “value” appellations in Burgundy….my old mate Dr Lavalle decided that it didn’t require a mention in his initial classification of Burgundian appellations in 1855 but that’s no matter….there are some superb wines coming from the commune and more often than not they are considerably lighter on the wallet than their heavy hitting neighbors.
The appellation lies to the North of, and in between Chassagne-Montrachet and Puligny-Montrachet curving around a side valley…in fact if you stand facing the famous vineyard of Montrachet you’ll see a little valley heading off to the left…that’s what we are talking about. There’s 156.46ha of premier cru vineyards here…in fact the majority of the appellation is classified as premier cru but of this swathe of 1ers there are a few that stand out.
It’s the stretch of vineyards just above Montrachet and Chevalier-Montrachet that seem to shine brightest….the Saint Aubin 1ers Chatenière, Les Murgers des Dents de Chien and En Remilly. I’ve had a “Dogs Teeth” Les Murgers des Dents de Chien 1er from Phillipe Pacelet before…..vagaries of vintage aside, it is a wine that seems a little more linear, a little stonier and sapid…the En Remilly on the other hand is a little richer, a little broader and has a little more fat on its bones.
En Remilly lies on a steep, South-facing slope that is pretty much a continuation of the Le Montrachet vineyard. At 29.72 hectares it is the largest of the Saint-Aubin premier crus…it’s lean of top soil and the upper reaches are essentially ground up rock….the vines love it.
Phillipe Pacelet was previously the wine-make at the stellar Domaine Prieuré-Roch in Nuits-St-Georges before starting his own domaine in 1999. He has established relationships with growers, rent some amazing vineyard plots and works from a cellar in the heart of Beaune. I met Phillipe last year at the La Comedie du Vins tasting in Beaune, along with a all-star list of other natural wine producers, and during our chat and tasting, he really struck a chord with me…any winemaker that talks about his different wines in relation to famous guitar solos is ok with me!
With a very gentle hand in the cellar and everything produced in a very natural fashion with minimal sulphur, the wines of Phillipe Pacelet show incredible fruit purity and clarity of aromas and flavours…..fresh, elegant and singing of terroir.
Medium straw in hue with rich, pure aromas of ripe peach, nectarine and pithy lemon fruits with a touch of melon. There are a wash of creamy, leesy, solids notes on the nose with hints of lemon curd, clotted cream, soft spice, nougat, grilled nuts, vanilla and stone.
A very pure fruit entry on the palate with juicy white peach, stone fruits and lemon sheathed by an almost crystalline sheen of sapid minerally acidity giving the wine grace, energy and a terrific presence on the palate. There are hints of clotted cream, spice, roasted cashews, vanilla bean, creme fraiche, marzipan and stone. A lovely texture in the mouth and a persistent finish with just a hint of oatmeal on the exit. Lovely drinking.
Price: $80 – Closure: Cork – Alcohol: 13% – Source: Cellar – Importer: Andrew Guard Wine Imports
Fantastic piece, detailed and concise, beautiful, the wine sounds delicious! Which guitar solo is this one??
Thanks Elizabeth…..I’m thinking this one is an Eric Clapton…..possibly in the Cream days…..maybe Strange Brew?