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Stephane Aviron Moulin-a-Vent Vieilles Vignes 2015

Gamay from Beaujolais, Burgundy, France
  • WE94
12.5% ABV
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3.5 9 Ratings
12.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Made only in exceptional years, this wine is a very limited production. The vineyard grows on a similar terroir to that of Chenas, this is a very small production wine of four separate parcels with vines averaging 65 years old, but with many over 100 years.

Grapes are vinified separately until time for the final blending and bottling. The must is macerated in temperature controlled stainless steel vats for 12-15 days and then aged for 12-14 months in a combination of new and used oak casks.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
A firm and structured cru wine from 100-year-old vines that has layers of firm fruits and tannins. It is a wine that is likely to mature well, with its wood aging and dry core. A blend from four parcels, it is concentrated and with a rich black-cherry character. Drink this exceptional wine, from old-vine hunter Stéphane Aviron, starting in 2020.
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Stephane Aviron

Stephane Aviron

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Stephane Aviron, Beaujolais, Burgundy, France
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Stephane Aviron has adopted an almost radical return to tradition in Beaujolais: sustainable viticulture, extremely old vines and classic Burgundian techniques. His cru Beaujolais drink like fine Burgundy.

Historically considered "poor man’s Burgundy," a modern movement toward fruity, simple, quaffing wines boosted sales but eroded the region’s traditional quality. Stephane Aviron has reversed the trend. By focusing on the Beaujolais village crus, the best sites for unique, expressive wines, and finding old parcels of vines, Aviron creates very expressive, age-worthy wines relying on traditional and new methods, including organic and biodynamic vineyard management. All wines are labeled "Vieilles Vignes," old vines, because the vines are at least 40 years old. Stephane Aviron’s wines are authentic in every way.

Beaujolais

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The bucolic region often identified as the southern part of Burgundy, Beaujolais actually doesn’t have a whole lot in common with the rest of the region in terms of climate, soil types and grape varieties. Beaujolais achieves its own identity with variations on style of one grape, Gamay.

Gamay was actually grown throughout all of Burgundy until 1395 when the Duke of Burgundy banished it south, making room for Pinot noir to inhabit all of the “superior” hillsides of Burgundy proper. This was good news for Gamay as it produces a much better wine in the granitic soils of Beaujolais, compared with the limestone escarpments of the Côte d’Or.

Four styles of Beaujolais exist though most is sold under the basic Beaujolais appellation. The simplest, and one that has regrettably given the region a subpar reputation, is Beaujolais Nouveau. This is the wine that is made using carbonic maceration (a quick fermentation that results in sweet aromas) and is released on the third Thursday of November in the same year as harvest. It's meant to drink young and is flirty, fruity and fun. The rest of Beaujolais is where the serious wines are found. Beaujolais-Villages, which must come from the hilly northern part of the region, offer reasonable values with some gems among them. The superior section are the cru vineyards coming from ten distinct communes: St-Amour, Juliénas, Chénas, Moulin-à-Vent, Fleurie, Chiroubles, Morgon, Regnié, Brouilly, and Côte de Brouilly. Any cru Beajolais will have its commune name prominent on the label.

Delightfully playful, yet at its best capable of impressive gravitas, Gamay is responsible for juicy, berry-packed wines from Beaujolais and parts of the Loire Valley. While it has received some criticism for its role in Beaujolais Nouveau—a decidedly young, charming and fruit-driven wine—the Gamay grape is very capable of producing serious wines. The variety is also widely planted in Savoie, Valle d'Aosta and Switzerland, and has recently found success on a small but growing scale in Oregon.

In the Glass

In its simplest form as Beaujolais Nouveau, a wine released just a couple of months after harvest, Gamay is fresh and full of cranberry and cherry candy flavors. But Gamay is capable of much more. The region of Beaujolais is divided into Villages and Crus, where granite-rich soils and conditions are perfect for Gamay. The Villages and Crus wines, given more time on the vine and in the winery, are capable of improving with age and offer dark blackberry or ripe cherry flavors with enticing aromas of baking spice, violets and dark wet earth.

Perfect Pairings

Gamay is delicious on its own; the simpler bottling can even benefit from a light chill before serving. It is the quintessential picnic red and goes well with simple charcuterie, country pâté and terrines. Gentle tannins and bright acidity make it a great option with Asian food, even dishes with a bit of spice. Gamay is also great with poultry, especially duck or Thanksgiving turkey with cranberry sauce.

Sommelier Secret

Within Beaujolais, there are ten different Crus, or highly ranked grape-growing communes. Each one has its own distinct personality—Fleurie is delicate and floral, Côte de Brouilly is concentrated and elegant and Morgon is serious, structured, and age-worthy, capable of rivaling some red Burgundies.

SWS474383_2015 Item# 348642