2021 Domaine de Bellene, Côte de Nuits-Villages Blanc “Les Monts de Boncourt” White Burgundy, France.
The Domaine de Bellene’s pretty and vibrant 2021 Les Monts de Boncourt white comes from the Côte de Nuits and gentle sloping mainly east facing hillsides set on silted Alluvial clay with limestone (marl) underneath with high density (vine) 1998 plantings of Chardonnay, making for a nuanced, mineral toned and complex light gold wine that impresses in the glass. The steely, but viscous medium bodied palate is racy and youthful at this stage, highlighting the best qualities of this vintage which is less dense and hedonistic than 2020 was, but no less exciting with a burst of lemony citrus, tangy peach, green apple and pear fruit(s), along with a touch of hazelnut, clove spice, bead dough, a touch of white flowers and a saline rich stony element. These’s a good cut of natural acidity here that easily balances out the textural presence in this lovely white Burgundy that was a pleasant surprise in a recent tasting of some of the latest releases from Nicolas Potel at Domaine de Bellene, impressing me a lot, as I’ve normally focused on the red wines at this label. This no new wood aged Chardonnay from Domaine de Bellene, who are best known for their red Burgundy, will be delightful and an eager companion with many types of dishes and flavors, including roast chicken, soft creamy farm cheeses and even fresh oysters, as well as other shell fish and sea foods.

Nicolas Potel’s newish Burgundy Domaine, the Domaine de Bellene, was born in 2005, after he sold his negociant self named operation, when some of the growers Nicolas Potel had been working with decided to stop their own production and proposed that he take over their vineyards, for de Bellene, which he did. Nicolas Potel who had made a name for himself during the late 1990s, like Vincent Girardin, took this as the perfect chance and way to realize his dream to a true vigneron, to create his own Burgundy that would full fill his vision, making wines, as he puts it, with the highest level of authenticity and quality. The Domaine de Bellene is based in cellars located in the old part, dating back to the 1600s, of the city center of Beaune, a Unesco world heritage site, and the capital of Burgundy, where it has good access to the vineyards of both the Côte de Beaune and the Côte de Nuits. For this Les Monts de Boncourt, Potel chose the ferment and age it solely in used large 600L casks, he employed an old slow screw press, taking as long as eight hours to finish the pressing of the juice before filling the Chardonnay to barrel where it stayed for about 12 months. After aging the de Bellene Côte de Nuits-Villages Blanc was blend into vats where it settled a further 6 months before bottling. The Les Monts de Boncourt is kind of a sleeper in the collection here and its transparent style is very much appreciated and I recommend it for white Burgundy fans that love a ore restrained and subtle style, it should prove rewarding for the next 3 to 5 years.
($65 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive

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