los angeles times en parle…

le 16 août, 2016 Presse Pas de commentaires

latimes
It’s tricky picking out a gift for a wine lover. You don’t want to show up with something no one wants to drink. Of course, if you have the means, a bottle of first-class Barolo, Napa Valley Cabernet or white Burgundy would be a slam dunk. But what about bringing something that’s a bit under the radar, beloved by sommeliers and wine geeks, yet still a relative bargain?

That would be cru Beaujolais.

Other than the Gamay grape, cru Beaujolais has very little to do with fruity, lightweight Beaujolais Nouveau. It’s a higher designation than Beaujolais AOC or Beaujolais-Villages AOC. The crus hail from just 10 designated villages, all in the northern part of Beaujolais, and are some of the food-friendliest wines on the planet.  These bottles will never sit at the back of the closet, undrunk. One bottle leads to another — and, happily, another.

You can also lay them down for a couple of years to mature, because these are seriously good wines.

At the holiday table, a bottle of Fleurie, Morgon or Moulin à Vent is like a sociable guest who gets along with everyone — in this case, roast turkey or goose, prime rib, slow-roasted salmon, even roasted root vegetables.

See the most-read stories in Life & Style this hour >>

The 2014 is a very pretty vintage and wines from Beaujolais’ top producers are just arriving on wine retailers’ shelves.

Here are 10 of the 2014 cru Beaujolais to consider, plus one Beaujolais Blanc (i.e., Chardonnay) that could go head to head with some whites from the neighboring and much more famous Burgundy.

2014 Domaine Richard Rottiers Moulin à Vent Beaujolais, $20

Young vintner Richard Rottiers founded this estate in 2007 and farms his vineyards organically. His 2014 Moulin à Vent is aromatic and subtle, with sweet berry fruit, a chiseled structure and ripe tannins. This is one you want to drink with the main course, whether it’s a roast goose or a crown roast. Look for it at Hi-Times Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, Topline Wine & Spirits in Glendale, Whole Foods Markets in various locations and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills. 

2014 Daniel Bouland Morgon Corcelette Vielles Vignes Beaujolais, $36

Within the Morgon appellation, there are six different climats, each with different soils and expositions.  Corcelette is one of them. This old vine bottling from Daniel Bouland is big and voluptuous, woven through with the taste of black cherries. A beauty from one of the master winemakers of Beaujolais. Look for it at the  Hi-Times Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, Kogod Wines in Encinitas, Wine House in Los Angeles and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills.

2014 Jean-Louis Dutraive Domaine de la Grand’Cour Fleurie “Le Clos” Vieilles Vignes Beaujolais, $36

Jean-Louis Dutraive is a force in the region, making  gorgeous Fleurie from vines his father planted more than 60 years ago. The 2014 “Le Clos” old vines is fine and nuanced. Raspberry on the nose, this jewel is silky in texture and finishes with a lingering taste of luscious red fruit. Pay attention to how the wine changes in the glass over the course of the evening. Look for it at the Wine House in Los Angeles and and online fromhttps://thesourceimports.com

2014 Chateau Thivin Côte de Brouilly Beaujolais, $21 to $25

The Geoffray family of Château Thivin has been making Côte de Brouilly since the late 19th century. That’s six generations now.  Their Beaujolais cru from the steeper vineyards of Côte de Brouilly  has character, depth and great complexity. The fruit is bright and true — cherries and raspberries with notes of earth and stone. Look for it at the Du Vin Wine & Spirits in West Hollywood, Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, Mission Wines in South Pasadena, Wine Club in Santa Ana, the Wine Country in Long Beach and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills. 

2014 Domaine Marcel Lapierre Morgon Beaujolais, $29 to $37

The Marcel Lapierre estate was one of the first to bottle in the village of Morgon. “People used to line up on Sunday to buy bottles from my grandfather,” says Camille Lapierre, who has joined her brother Mathieu in making the estate’s natural wines. Their 2014 Morgon is a standout for its fresh, pure fruit and exemplary balance.  If you’re feeling flush, look for their top bottlings, Cuvée MMXI or Cuvée Marcel Lapierre, both elegant and profound wines, yet still under $50. Look for it at domaineLA in Hollywood, Du Vin Wine & Spirits in West Hollywood, John & Pete’s Fine Wines & Spirits in West Hollywood, K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, Lincoln Fine Wines in Venice, Los Angeles Wine Company in Los Angeles, Wally’s Wine & Spirits in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills, Wine Exchange in Santa Ana, the Wine House in Los Angeles and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills.

2014 Domaine desTerres Dorées Beaujolais Blanc Chardonnay (Beaujolais, France), $15 to $18

Yes, they do make Chardonnay in Beaujolais, too. The revered winemaker Jean-Paul Brun produces a fine Beaujolais Blanc from his vineyards in the southern terres dorées (land of the golden stones) of Beaujolais. The 2014 is fresh and crisp, with notes of lemon and slate and a beautiful complexity and balance. This is the wine to have with oysters or a seafood platter. It’s also a great value. Look for it at domaine LA in Hollywood, Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, Wally’s Wine & Spirits in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills, Wine House in Los Angeles and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills. 

2013 Jean Foillard Morgon “Côte de Py” Beaujolais, $40

The 2014 from this master winemaker hasn’t been released yet, and it’s a stunner. Meanwhile we have the excellent 2013 at a few shops.  Foillard has a subtle hand with Gamay. His wines are polished and graceful, characterized by great depth and purity of fruit.  The shops below should be receiving the 2014 soon. Look for it at domaineLA in Hollywood and John & Pete’s Fine Wines & Spirits in West Hollywood. 

2014 Julien Sunier Régnié (Beaujolais, France), $25

A very pretty, delicate Beaujolais from one of the smallest crus. The vines that go into Julien Sunier’s Régnié are up to 55 years old.  Sunier’s style is understated and elegant, floral and gently spicy, with the taste of crushed raspberries.  His Morgon and Fleuriecrus, like the Régnié, densely planted old vines farmed biodynamically, are worth seeking out too. A Beaujolais cru like this one can go with practically anything on the holiday table. It’s a keeper. Look for it at domaineLA in Hollywood, Lou Wine Shop & Tastings in Los Feliz and Wine House in Los Angeles.

2014 Nicole Chanrion Domaine de la Voute des Crozes Côte de Brouilly, $20 to $22

Ruby-violet in color, this Côte de Brouilly from Nicole Chanrion tastes of cherries, cassis and crushed raspberries. Balanced and powerful, it has a long satisfying finish and silky mouthfeel. A steal at this price for the quality from one of the Beaujolais region’s most dedicated winemakers. Look for it at Envoyer Fine Wines in Irvine, Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood and Lincoln Fine Wines in Venice. 

2014 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux  “Les Griottes” Rosé Beaujolais, $14 to $18

Not ready to give up summer’s rosés? Try this one from southern Beaujolais, which has been a fixture in SoCal wine shops pretty much year-round. Scented with flowers and berries, Domaine de Vissoux rosé carries the taste of cherries, strawberries and sweet spices. A great match for smoked fish and Asian cuisines. Look for it at domaineLA in Hollywood, K&L Wine Merchants in Hollywood, Wine Exchange in Santa Ana and Woodland Hills Wine Company in Woodland Hills. 

Source : LOS ANGELES TIMES par S. Irene Virbila