2017 Domaine Camille et Mathieu Lapierre, Juliénas, Cru Beaujolais, France.
The Lapierre Juliénas is beautifully ripe, perfumed and almost exotic in nature with its unique volcanic and schist soil giving loads of floral tones, spicy contrast and mineral highlights. Coming from a single lieu-dit known as Côte de Bessay this Juliénas Cru Beaujolais is a pure Gamay wine that, again like the more well known Morgon bottlings from Lapierre is crafted with traditional whole cluster fermentation à l’ancienne and using 100% native yeasts and was aged on the fine lees in used ex Burgundy barrels. The palate is full and packed with blackberry, strawberry and cherry fruits along with hints of black walnut, anise, tangy herb, all spice and dried violets showing the vintage to perfection and allowing the Gamay’s true nature to shine with an underlying freshness and purity of form, creating a sexy balance of juicy fruit and lively acidity that is impossible to resist.
Mathieu and his sister Camille Lapierre confidently continue the great work that their late father Marcel pioneered with this domaine based in Morgon, and now having introduced all biodynamic vineyard practices and ensuring that Marcel’s legacy of Jules Chauvet influenced traditional wine growing lives on. The viticulture and vinification, as noted by importer Kermit Lynch, of their Juliénas is the same as the estate’s more famous Morgon offerings, starting with old vines, in this case over 60 years old, never using synthetic herbicides or pesticides, harvesting late for deep flavor development, rigorously sorting to remove all but the healthiest grapes, and adding the absolute minimal doses of sulfur (as this one has) or none at all, everything is done here to adhere to Chauvet and their fathers belief in natural wine. That said, Mathieu and Camille have made this label a reflection of the past and future, carving out their own niche and making exceptional wines, like this one.
($38 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive