Domaine Cheysson Chiroubles 2009
Gamay from Beaujolais, France
Bright, red & shiny with an upfront nose of bright mixed berries and great gamay aromas. The taste is very characteristic of Gamay with many layers to please you. It is smooth, well balanced & structured with a long finish. Perfect with roast chicken or lighter meat dishes. A great example of a well made Beaujolais.
The Wine Advocate - "After being delighted to discover Jean Pierre Large’s wines with his 2006 (reviewed in issue 178) I somehow, reprehensibly, missed out on tasting either of the two subsequent vintages, but the Domaine Cheysson 2009 Chiroubles confirms the existence of major talent, not to mention the presumption of excellent terroir. Red raspberry and red currant mingle with black tea and peony in the nose, then combine vividly – right down to the tart, invigoratingly bitter crunch of their seeds – on the palate, with smoky, saline, and alkaline accents. There is a saline, exuberantly tart berry-brightness to the finish that positively exhilarates. The 2006 was still lovely 12 months ago, and I would expect this exceptional value 2009 to be worth following for 5-6 years. "
International Wine Cellar - "Bright violet. Sexy, expansive aromas of black raspberry and cherry preserves, with floral and spicecake nuances and slow-mounting minerality. Energetic, mineral-driven red and dark berry flavors show alluring sweetness and a suave floral overtone. This seamless, pure Beaujolais finishes with excellent clarity and lingering floral and red berry notes. As delicious as it is right now, I'll bet that it will be even better in a few years and will hold for a good while after that. Cheysson's wine is raised in cement and stainless steel tanks and never sees wood."
Domaine Cheysson Winery
This estate in Beaujolais, was established in 1870 when turnips were more plentiful than grapes! Today, Jean- Pierre Large makes outstanding Cru Beaujolais that consistently wins medals of excellence. Clos les Farges, is a single vineyard with 45 year old vines that yields concentrated jammy wine. Quality is ensured at every step of the process, by the knowledgeable Jean Paul. When it comes to the vines and wines, the family motto is patience & love, which Emile Cheysson had declared the key to a successful and delicious Chiroubles! View all Domaine Cheysson Wines
Upon hearing Beaujolais, many think of the large celebration for wine that comes out the 3rd week of November, that year's vintage of Beaujolais Nouveau. But the region of Beaujolais, situated at the bottom of the Burgundy AC, is more than just the nouveau. Some Beaujolais wines can be kept (gasp!) for up to 10 years! Those are usually the Cru Beaujolais and are much lower in production than the drink-it-now.
Even though Beaujolais is technically part of Burgundy, its climate, soil, grape varieties and winemaking methods make it completely separate in character. The primary grape of Beaujolais is Gamay, a very thin-skinned, light bodied grape that does particularly well in Beaujolais. It also does particularly well with the method of winemaking in Beaujolais – Carbonic Maceration. Carbonic maceration is anaerobic fermentation – meaning the fermentation takes place INSIDE the berry. How does this happen? Whole grape clusters are carefully put into a tank, given carbon dioxide and sealed to prevent contact with oxygen. Then a chemical process occurs inside the grape, turning sugars in to ethanol, aka alcohol. The process allows the fermenting juice to extract the color of the skins and the fruitiness of the grape without the harsh tannins of the skins. Not all Beaujolais use this method, but almost every Beaujolais Nouveau does. The result is a very fruity wine with fresh berry favors and super-light tannins and body.
The ACs of Beaujolais
Over half of the production of Beaujolais is under the Beaujolais AC. The second level is Beaujolais-Village, and the final is Beaujolais Crus, of which there are ten. Beaujolais Villages AC is a bit better quality than the first level, and the ten Crus are even higher quality. Most Cru Beaujolais AC wines use regular fermentation rather than carbonic, and some even let their wines age a bit in oak. In fact, after a few years in oak and bottle, a good vintage of Beaujolais can be mistaken for a Burgundy! But this is the exception to the rule - the majority of Beaujolais should be drunk within the first 2 years. In a good vintage a few of the cru wines may hold up for more, but Beaujolais is known for being fruity, light and easy drinking for right now. Serve a bit cool and enjoy without thought.
The 10 Cru Beaujolais to look for: Morgon, St-Amour, Juliénas, Chénas, Moulin-à-Vent, Brouilly, Côte-du-Brouilly, Fleurie, Chiroubles, Regnié.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.