From Our Cellar

Armelle et Bernard Rion Bourgogne La Croix Blanche 2016

2016
Pinot Noir
Domaine Armelle et Bernard Rion

Member Price: $29.00

Guest Price: $34.12

Our tasting impressions

Pure, beautiful red fruit flavors are framed by a hit of spice. Good structure and fine tannins for this level. Approachable and easy drinking but not simple. Enjoy over the next 5-7 years.

 

About this wine

Bourgogne is the broadest appellation in Burgundy.  Grapes can come from anywhere within the region including declassified 1er or Grand Cru.

 

This one is produced from 50-year old Pinot Noir vines straddling the Vosne/Nuits border – one plot on each side. The wine ages 12-15 months in oak barrels.

 

About the grape

Pinot Noir is an ancient grape from eastern France. Notoriously challenging, it thrives in cooler climates.  The concept of terroir is most closely identified with Burgundy because the lightness of Pinot Noir enables it to so transparently express minor differences (which is why experienced tasters can discern the difference in wines produced from vineyards in very close proximity).  Intense popularity resulted in plantings all over the world but most agree that its finest expression is in the Côte d’Or of Burgundy.

 

About the vintage (Domaine perspective)

Spring 2016 was wet & wild with unexpected cold fronts and heavy frosts at the end of April. Summer was pleasant and dry so while yields were extremely low, quality was high, though with significant variance among vineyards. The harvest began on September 24.

 

On your table

Try veal marsala for its combination of a lighter meat with a sauce with some body and richness. Of course, mushrooms are always welcome with Burgundy. Serve at cellar temperature.

Domaine Armelle et Bernard Rion

A true family affair, Armelle, Bernard and their daughters, Nelly, Melissa and Alice and her husband Louis, manage 7.5 hectares of vines producing 35,000 bottles of 14 wines across 8 appellations, including some of the most coveted ground in the Côte de Nuits. Five generations of this Rion family have been making wine since the late 19th century.

The Rions farm their mostly old-vine plots lutte-raisonnée (mostly natural and non-interventionist but within reason based on what nature dictates). Everything is done by hand, they destem completely, ferment 2-weeks in concrete tanks and age in a mix of old and new oak barrels.


Their wines are remarkably elegant and finessed while remaining true to the terroir of the different vineyards. While they do not display overt power, they do not want for structure and fortitude and are certainly age-worthy. They are heavenly with the truffles they forage with their 3 dogs.