This is more floral than fruity but remains very fresh, thanks to the acidity
present. This liveliness, as always, is generated by the particular marl-limestone soils of Bouzeron. Rich, round and lively at the same time, the mouth feel oscillates between richness of the fruit, roundness generated by a good maturity and a saline presence, a palatability that makes the wine extremely digestible.
Pierre de Benoist says that he wants bitterness in his wine and, in the best possible way, he gets what he wants: this is racy and refined, its greenness and salinity balanced by pretty white fruit. The Aligoteurs talk a great deal about the quality of Aligoté Doré, and here’s some fine proof they're right. Organic.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2017 Bouzeron is showing very well after a year in bottle, unfurling in the glass with scents of fresh peaches, white flowers, beeswax and green apples. On the palate, it's medium to full-bodied, satiny and lively, with good concentration and volume at the core, chalky structuring extract and a pure finish. This is well worth attention.
Aubert de Villaine deserves the accolades he receives. He is a reluctant hero, an unlikely trait in a man of such accomplishment, intellect, and inherent sense of noblesse. Heir to one of the most enviable wine legacies of all time, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, the young Aubert was more interested in literature and law than wine. After spending time in New York working for an importer of Burgundian wines, he finally returned home in the mid-nineteen sixties to assume his role as co-director of DRC.
In the 1970s, Aubert and his American wife, Pamela, sought less pedigreed pastures to call home. They finally settled in the village of Bouzeron, well-situated between Chassagne-Montrachet, Santenay, Rully, and Mercurey, in the Côte Chalonnaise. However high profile his day job, Aubert still considers himself a vigneron like any other, and Bouzeron’s off-the-beaten-path location left him alone to make his own wines without the demands of upholding an international reputation. The domaine was horribly rundown when the de Villaines took over, but years of studying this unique terroir have made them pioneers in one of the last forgotten enclaves of Burgundy. The monks of the great abbey of Cluny first planted vines here in the twelfth century, leaving a legacy that has endured for centuries. Consequently, the grape varietal that reigns supreme today is the dry, white Aligoté—an unusual celebrity given its work-horse reputation in the middle of Chardonnay country. Bouzeron boasts the best Aligoté in Burgundy, the Aligoté Doré, (instead of the lesser clone, Aligoté Vert) which gives smaller yields to produce wines with more expressive aromatics. Although the grape was overlooked until 1979 when it first earned the appellation Bourgogne Aligoté de Bouzeron, the I.N.A.O. finally upgraded the appellation to A.O.C. Bouzeron in 1997, largely due to Aubert’s advocacy over the years. Aubert’s single vineyard Bourgognes, both in blanc and rouge, are equally outstanding representations of the unlikely pedigree found in this corner of the region.
The de Villaines farm three appellations within the Côte Chalonaise, namely Bouzeron (Aligoté), Rully (Chardonnay and Pinot Noir) and Mercurey (Pinot Noir). Their single-vineyard parcels are stunning examples of what this complex and amazing terroir can yield. Though their wines are quite enjoyable young, their ability to age well is what one might expect from a master such as de Villaine. Much of this is due to both the diversity of his vinestock and his organic and biodynamic methodology in the vineyards, both of which Aubert stands by with great conviction. He also ferments his Mercureys and Rully rouge in wood tanks, a style adopted from DRC.
Pierre de Benoist, Aubert’s nephew, currently directs the domaine, upholding the sense of tradition, excellence, and standards for which it has become so well-known. In 2010, Aubert was awarded Decanter Magazine’s prestigious “Man of the Year” Award, a distinction that, unsurprisingly, the modest Aubert seemed reluctant to accept.
In Côte Chalonnaise, just south of the Côte de Beaune, the white grape, Aligoté has its very own appellation in the quaint village of Bouzeron. While the grape can grow throughout Burgundy and claim the general Bourgogne Aligoté appellation name, since 1997 Bourgogne Aligoté de Bouzeron has been promoted to its own appellation, simply called Bouzeron.
A native but unique white grape to Burgundy, Aligoté is a light bodied white that often ends up unfairly lost in Chardonnay’s shadow. In Côte Chalonnaise, in a quaint village named Bouzeron, just south of the Côte de Beaune, Aligoté has its very own appellation where yields are limited in order to enhance flavors, acidity and overall quality. Somm Secret—Curiously, the famous producer, Domaine Ponsot, bottles a 100% Aligoté from its Premier Cru in Morey-Ste-Denis, Les Monts Luisants, made from Aligoté vines planted in 1911.
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