From Our Cellar

Girin Beaujolais Coteaux du Razet Vieilles Vignes 2014

About this wine

100% Gamay from vines ranging in age from 50-80 years in south-facing granite soil. Yields are 35 hl/ha. Fermentation through carbonic maceration.  Aged in tanks.

About the grape

Gamay, a descendent of Pinot Noir crossed with the obscure Gouais Blanc has often been thought of as a light grape but the emergence of Cru Beaujolais in recent years has raised awareness that it can produce serious, age-worthy wines.  Gamay wines are high in acidity and therefore very flexible.

Our tasting impressions

Charming and delicious, this wine has an uncommon zestiness for Beaujolais and is much more provocative than one expects at this level.  There is a green vegetal note (but by no means underripe) balanced by a deep, savory quality.

The tannins are mild and mostly resolved but it could age a bit on its acidity.  We recently tasted the 2005 and 2010. The ‘10 had faded considerably (maybe just the bottle?) but the ‘05 was gorgeous and while mature, it showed no indications of falling apart.  

On your table…

Beaujolais, including this one, can be served at or just below cellar temperature - 50-55°. Try with charcuterie (as we did in the Girin Cellars) and a variety of cheeses pre-meal.  For dinner: poultry, pork, some fish, even steak or lamb, as the acidity helps break down the fat. The only things to avoid are hot spices.

2014
Gamay
Domaine Girin

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Domaine Girin

Dating back to 1890, Domaine Girin, is located in Saint-Vérand, a village in Beaujolais. The 30,000 bottle production from the 32-hectare, all granite soil vineyards is overseen by fifth generation winemaker Thibaut Girin. He offers only regular Beaujolais - Bill Nanson of the Burgundy Report considers this the best source for non-Cru Beaujolais.

The hand-harvested grapes are pressed in full clusters with stems. Typical of Beaujolais, fermentation is done without introducing yeast - known as Carbonic Maceration.  Production is in tanks and the wines are filtered.

Thibaut is a bright, dedicated vigneron. He is part of the growing wave of next generation winemakers who have introduced new approaches while maintaining respect for traditions and terroir.

We recently were introduced to the French version of brunch, called casse-croute at Domaine Girin, along with Alexis Pichon. We tasted the latest vintage. Then Thibaut opened a 2005 and a 2010 Razet. The ‘10 probably wasn’t the best bottle but the ‘05 was a delight.

 

VDLT is the only US source for Girin’s wines. They sell mostly ex-cellar to visitors.