White, Ready, but will improve

2015 Pouilly-Fuissé, Vers Cras, Domaine des Gerbeaux

2015 Pouilly-Fuissé, Vers Cras, Domaine des Gerbeaux

White | Ready, but will improve | Domaine des Gerbeaux | Code:  39116 | 2015 | France > Burgundy > The Maconnais > Pouilly Fuisse | Chardonnay | Medium Bodied, Dry | 13.0 % alcohol

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The Producer

Domaine des Gerbeaux

Domaine des Gerbeaux

The wine Domaine des Gerbeaux is owned and run by wife/husband team of Beatrice (who heralds from nearby Chaintre) and Jean-Michel Drouin, who since 1979 has developed the domaine originated by his grandfather in 1896. They have now been joined by their son Xavier.

Jean-Michel produces some of the best and most distinctive wines in the Mâconnais region. In typically Burgundian style, he has small parcels of vines (over 40) spread around in Mâcon, St. Véran and Pouilly-Fuissé.

The wines are fermented in stainless steel tanks, enamel vats (to maxmise the contact with the lees) or wooden barrels depending on their nature. The wines are superb and Jean-Michel is in the envious position of knowing that every bottle is sold before it is bottled. In particular, his Pouilly-Fuissé Vieilles Vignes is outstanding, with richness, finesse and perfect integration between fruit and oak. The St Véran wine comes from the village of Davayé, from a vineyard immediately adjacent to Pouilly Fuissé. Berry Bros & Rudd take the entire crop of this cuvee every year. 

The Grape

Chardonnay

Chardonnay

Chardonnay is the "Big Daddy" of white wine grapes and one of the most widely planted in the world. It is suited to a wide variety of soils, though it excels in soils with a high limestone content as found in Champagne, Chablis, and the Côte D`Or.

Burgundy is Chardonnay's spiritual home and the best White Burgundies are dry, rich, honeyed wines with marvellous poise, elegance and balance. They are unquestionably the finest dry white wines in the world. Chardonnay plays a crucial role in the Champagne blend, providing structure and finesse, and is the sole grape in Blanc de Blancs.

It is quantitatively important in California and Australia, is widely planted in Chile and South Africa, and is the second most widely planted grape in New Zealand. In warm climates Chardonnay has a tendency to develop very high sugar levels during the final stages of ripening and this can occur at the expense of acidity. Late picking is a common problem and can result in blowsy and flabby wines that lack structure and definition.

Recently in the New World, we have seen a move towards more elegant, better- balanced and less oak-driven Chardonnays, and this is to be welcomed.

The Region

Pouilly Fuisse

Pouilly-Fuissé is the most distinguished wine appellation in the Mâconnais, making rich, full-bodied white Burgundy from Chardonnay in four communes: Chaintré, Fuissé, Solutré-Pouilly and Vergisson. There is a move afoot to consider classifying individual vineyard sites.

Since arriving in the Mâconnais in 1987, Olivier and Corinne Merlin have become among the region’s most respected producers. After 10 years, they began buying Pouilly-Fuissé grapes, and now make three different cuvées each vintage.

Pouilly-Fuissé should not be confused with Pouilly-Fumé or Pouilly-sur-Loire in the Loire Valley that produce wines from Sauvignon Blanc.

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