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Christophe makes the wine as naturally as possible, vines are hand-tended, the wine undergoes a controlled fermentation with maceration before and after, and the wines rest sur lie in barriques for as long as possible, usually 16 to 18 months. The long slow ageing enables these wines to be bottled without filtration. 15-25% new oak is used for the village appellations whilst 40-50% is used for the 1ers and Grand Crus. The result is intense, noble red Burgundy.
Here, Morey-Saint-Denis and Chambolle-Musigny demonstrate the ability of the Côte de Nuits to blend two distinct temperaments into a single personality. The Bonnes-Mares vineyards have been known by this name since the late Middle Ages although the etymology still remains uncertain. The origin might be the verb " marer " meaning " to cultivate carefully ", although many like to think the name alludes to ancient mother-goddesses. This explanation, however, is certainly less probable. Its Grand Cru status was recognised on 8th December , 1936. The Bonnes-Mares appellation lies just south of the Clos de Tart, the neighbouring Grand Cru, forming a rectangle between the hollowed hillsides of Morey and Chambolle. More of it lies in the territory of Chambolle-Musigny than that of Morey-Saint-Denis. Its exposition is easterly and its altitude averages between 250 and 280 metres.
The sub-soil consists of limestone pavement and white marl and underlies clay-flint soils some 40 cm in depth on a gently sloping site. The soil is quite light and gravelly, and is brown or reddish in colour. Its origins date back to the Jurassic period, some 150 million years ago.
A successful blend of impressive build and meaty texture means this wine is a worthy equal to game, which responds well to its huge aromatic intensity and, in the maturer vintages, its musky notes. Preferably the game should be roasted, but the wine will also take on stews without fuss as well as fine wine-based sauces. Duck (even laquered Pekin-style Duck) is similarly enhanced because the virile tannins in the wine give structure to the aromatic and delicately-textured flesh. It also goes well with strong-flavoured cheeses.
Serving temperature : 14 to 16 °C.
1989 VINTAGE in Burgundy
Weather conditions were exceptional which led to a notably early harvest with perfectly ripened grapes in both colours. The reds with their velvety tannins have a fine colour, showing softer more elegant tendencies than the 88?s. They make a wonderful choice to drink on a special occasion. The whites in general were very precocious; ripe, powerful, rich, generous and well rounded; most should already have been drunk but the Grand Crus are superb for drinking now and over the next few years.
As regards the style of the 1989's, we now have one or two general impressions. The white wines are of great class. The Chardonnay in Burgundy has produced wines with ripe, powerful aromas and rich, generous body tending, in certain cases, almost to unctuosity. Initial comparisons have been drawn with 1971 and perhaps 1964.
The ripening of the Pinot Noir crop was somewhat hindered in several areas by unexpectedly large quantities of second generation grapes and extremely dry conditions. The resulting natural sugar levels were slightly lower than the recent yardstick year, 1985, but the fruit was in perfect condition. Overall quality will be good to very good.
The red wines have fine, deep colour and quite vinous, concentrated fruity aromas. They are well constituted and round and should be capable of ageing well. Initial comparisons have been drawn with 1966 and 1979.
In the Beaujolais, the Gamay has yielded powerful, fleshy wines lacking perhaps the charm of textbook Beaujolais. The wines are reminiscent of the 1978's.