Frederic Magnien Chambolle-Musigny Borniques Premier Cru 2006
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Barrel Sample: 89-91
Born in May 1969, in one of the most beautiful wine growing regions in the world, Frederic Magnien is a 5th generation winemaker from the Magnien family. He studied at the viticultural Lycee (high school) in Beaune, while helping his father in the vineyards and cellars in his spare time.
In September 1995, he made one of the most important decisions of his life; he set up a Maison de Negoce (wine trading house) under his own name.
His objective is to distinguish the work of a "wine producer" from that of a "winemaker": Frederic Magnien does not own vines but plays an important consultancy role with the wine growers with whom he works closely throughout the year. This enables him to select plots of mainly old vines (over 40 years of age) and to buy very high quality grapes, at optimum maturity, from among the noblest of the Cote de Nuits appellations.
He can then, at the vinification stage and using identical casks and aging, explore the aromatic diversity of the Cote de Nuits terroirs, building on the dedicated work of the wine grower.
The House of Frederic Magnien started off in 1995 with 21 barrels containing 5 appellations and by 2011 could claim 1000 barrels.
Chambolle-Musigny represents the charm of the Côte de Nuits district of Burgundy. But you’ll find that term mainly in reference to the vineyards in its southern stretches, which border Clos Vougeot: the Grand Cru of Le Musingy and in part, its neighboring and most exceptional Premier Cru, Les Amoureuses. Some producers argue for the primacy of Les Amoureuses and its eligibility for Grand Cru status given its wines can sometimes surpass other Grands Crus.
Le Musigny ranks on par with the most acclaimed Grands Crus for Pinot Noir: Romanée-Conti, La Tâche, Richebourg, Chambertin, and Chambertin-Clos de Bèze. It is also the only Grand Cru in Côte de Nuits for Chardonnay. All of the others are in Côte de Beaune.
This village can in fact claim only two Grands Crus vineyards and—in the context of breaking down the minutiae—they are markedly different. Bonnes-Mares, the other one at the far northern end above the village, bordering Morey-St-Denis, offers power, strength and great aging potential. But Chambolle-Musigny includes a nice handful of exceptional Premiers Crus, as noted above with Les Amoureuses as the finest. Le Fuees and Les Cras are other noteworthy Premiers Crus.
Overall, a top Chambolle-Musigny offers pure aromas of violets, dark cherry and damp earth, coupled with a velvety elegance, supple mid-palate, an abundance of black and red berry, and finesse and power through a long and fine-grained finish.
Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”