This week I attended the annual Faiveley En-Primeur Burgundy 2015 tasting hosted by their UK shipper, Maison Marques et Domaines. The reputation of the 2015 Red Burgundy vintage precedes it, so this was a tastings I attended with great expectations.
Clearly, 2015 is not a “classic” vintage for Burgundy connoisseurs. It is certainly very opulent, ripe, concentrated and plush with good balancing acidities on the reds, but less so on the slightly mushy whites. If you’re a lover of Burgundy reds from 2001, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2013… then this is probably not a vintage for you.
If on the other hand, you loved buying and drinking 2002, 2005, 2009, 2010… then 2015 should be just right for your palate. (Though 2010 is perhaps the anomaly vintage that transcends classic and modernist type casting.)
One wine I have decided to single out is the Mercury La Framboisiere red that I found so captivating. This Côte Chalonnaise village gets its name from the God Mercury (God of Merchants). The story goes that a temple was erected here in honour of this deity. This climat La Framboisière produces wines with real crunchy bright character and are always for me, one of the highlights of Faiveley’s tastings.
This Vineyard has a total surface area of 11 hectares with vines grown on clay / limestone soils. Vines were planted in 1949, 1964, 1965, 1968 and 1990 and produce approximately 65,000 bottles, though this number is very much vintage dependent.
Tasting Note: The 2015 La Framboisiere has a really powerful, fruity, perfumed nose of cherry blossom, violets, wild strawberries, cranberries, salty cassis and hints of sappy brambly forest fruits. But it is on the palate that this wine shows its full potential, with its power, perfume, concentration and crunchy, tart, linear acidity, soft fleshy texture, with flavours of raspberry and other very ripe red berry fruits. The structure too is direct and powerful, with chalky velvety tannins and a very long, intense, focused, vibrant finish. A real pleasure to drink. (Wine Safari Score: 92+/100 Greg Sherwood MW).
It’s when you drink a glass of this lovely wine that you realise all is not lost in Burgundy with regards to “modest pricing.” It’s perhaps more the generational, inbuilt stigma of the Mercury appellation that holds some people back from embracing this wine and enjoying its brightness and brilliance even more. For me, it’s one of my favourites in the Faiveley portfolio!