Monday, March 07, 2005

Naked Wine #2
A Morgon 3-Some

The best way to get intimate with a region is to throw yourself into it with a certain abandon. So with all the recent discussion about terroir versus style, I decided to go back to back to back with 3 different Beaujolais and see what I could unearth. All 3 producers are from the ‘Vin Nature’ school (see previous post) and work the vine in a similar fashion and avoid excessive use of sulfites. While one of the wines was from the 2003 vintage, it was interesting to taste the difference in wines made in vineyards that were walking distance from one another. You know, check out the terroir discussion on a micro level. For a great New World versus Old World style comparison, Beau did a great pizza comp at Basic Juice.

Morgon 2002, Côte du Py, Jean Foillard ($29…importation)
Not the brightest in terms of fruit but the most deliciously rich. Soft on the palette, the typical cherry Gamay is a little darker than normal, and finishes with a hint of mandarin orange. This Côte du Py is considered the best terroir in Morgon, and this was the only wine of the 3 tasted that was 100% Py. According to a man in the know, Foillard filters the lees to gain a little more color, and for me, a little more richness than what you get from Lapierre. It was wonderful with a plate of thyme laced roasted vegetables.

Morgon 2002, Marcel Lapierre ($27…importation)
My third vintage of Lapierre so I am starting to get a feel for his style. A part of this bottle comes from the Côte du Py. Super bright cherry fruit and almost translucent compared to Foillard, and what it lacked in depth, it made up for in spice. In almost Beaune fashion, it picked up on the curry sauce that covered my sole filets. More delicate than Foillard, it stayed refreshing and crisp until the very end (which came way to quick). A very sunny wine but a touch less complex than the Foillard.

Morgon 2003, Vieille Vignes, Jean-Paul Thévenet ($27..importation)
Much denser in both color and texture than the previous two, but that could be a result of the 2003 vintage. It had a ton on fruit, going beyond cherry into an almost candy-apple finish. But most interesting was this lead pencil minerality that I had never tasted in a red wine. It was almost as if I could taste something that was deep inside the rocks. While it was the most complex of the bunch, I found the lead pencil thing a little bit of a distraction.

But the best Beaujolais on the block year after year is still Métras' Fleurie, a wine which a number of people (vignerons and wine affecianados) have told me comes from one of the best drained and best exposed vineyards in the region. Terroir?


Anonymous said...

I'm salivating over the idea of these superBeaujolais from Morgon. I had a love affair with DuBouef's Brouilly and hope to meet this Morgon threesome someday.

Great post.

Cheers - beau

Lenn said...

Great post.

As I tell anyone who will listen, nothing beats a side-by-side this one or the one Beau posted about.

If the three (or more) of us can get together...we definitely need to plan some sort of comparison. I'll bring the LI wine.

I know, you're shocked.