2017 Savigny-lès-Beaune, Benjamin Leroux, Burgundy
About this WINE
Having created a name for himself as régisseur (general manager) of Domaine du Comte Armand in Pommard, Benjamin Leroux established, with English backing, a small négociant business based in Beaune since 2007. The range is confined to the Côte d’Or, from Chassagne-Montrachet to Gevrey-Chambertin, with the intention of developing farming contracts or indeed purchasing vineyards in the future.
The possibilities are very exciting for this exceptionally talented vigneron. Benjamin is a master at delivering purity of fruit alongside a seamless texture in his wines which have only the subtlest influence of oak. One of Benjamin’s favourite locations for white wine vineyards is the border between Auxey-Duresses and Meursault, which is where Les Vireuils can be found. Here the natural weight of Meursault is enhanced by the fresher minerality typical of the side valley of Auxey-Duresses.
Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director and author of the award-winning Inside Burgundy comprehensive handbook.
Discover the story behind our Own Selection Bourgogne Côte d’Or Pinot Noir, made for us by Benjamin. Read more
The wines of Savigny are often as good as those of Beaune itself, a local motto describing them as ‘Théologiques, Nourissants et Morbifuges’. They are usually good to drink at three to five years old. A small amount of white wine is also made.
- 239 hectares of village Savigny-lès-Beaune.
- 144 hectares of premier cru vineyards (22 in all). Best vineyards include Les Lavières, La Dominode, Les Vergelesses
- Recommended Producers: Bize, Pavelot
- Recommended Restaurant : Le Vieux Moulin (at Bouilland, beyond Savigny. * Michelin)
Pinot Noir is probably the most frustrating, and at times infuriating, wine grape in the world. However when it is successful, it can produce some of the most sublime wines known to man. This thin-skinned grape which grows in small, tight bunches performs well on well-drained, deepish limestone based subsoils as are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or.
Pinot Noir is more susceptible than other varieties to over cropping - concentration and varietal character disappear rapidly if yields are excessive and yields as little as 25hl/ha are the norm for some climats of the Côte d`Or.
Because of the thinness of the skins, Pinot Noir wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However the best wines have grip, complexity and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, redolent with freshly crushed raspberries, cherries and redcurrants. When mature, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouth feel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey "sous-bois" nuances emerging.
The best examples are still found in Burgundy, although Pinot Noir`s key role in Champagne should not be forgotten. It is grown throughout the world with notable success in the Carneros and Russian River Valley districts of California, and the Martinborough and Central Otago regions of New Zealand.
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This is deliciously moreish, with sweet strawberry fruit and cranberry bite for lift. The final blend will also include some wine aged in large foudre, which adds a heartier, richer texture and rounds out the wine. Simple but not one-dimensional. Drink 2019-2023.
It is fair to say that Ben is very happy with 2017, describing it as the kind of vintage he would sign up for every year. The whites, he says, are beautiful, and not far from 2014 in style, with purity, finesse, great definition and balance. He describes the reds as pretty, appealing and with body to support ageing, while highlighting the importance of lower-yielding old vines for serious ageing. He eloquently explains that there is no “black sheep” in 2017, that no village has underperformed. For reason of space, the limited volumes of Grands Crus have not been included in this brochure. Since the 2014 vintage, all white wines are bottled under screwcap
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