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We apologize for the long delay, but finally the wines of Christian Ducroux are in stock - along with the 2018 "Exspectatia" there is a small additional quantity of 2018 "Esquisse" and 2017 "Patience" available for sale. Chambers Street is honored to work with Christian, who produces some of the world's most vibrant and delicious natural wines from his five hectares of living soils in Thulon, above Regnié-Durette in the Beaujolais.
Our tasting with Christian in January revealed a brilliant 2018 vintage for the "Exspectatia" (formerly known as Regnié)! The wine possesses deep, complex red and black fruits with fabulous purity and length, and is fresh and bright despite the higher than usual degree of alcohol, at 13.5% - normally between 11 and 12.5%. While this wine has been tightly allocated in the past, the generous yields in 2018 allow us to sell case quantities of this beautiful wine. Please - enjoy some now in it's vivacious youth, but be sure to age some as well. As we mentioned last year, at a recent tasting of 2009s, Ducroux's Regnié was the clear favorite in a flight containing many of the finest wines of Beaujolais.
Arriving with the 2018 Expectatia, all with zero SO2:
2017 "Patience" - as the name indicates this is a wine to cellar. This is the last juice of the press, best enjoyed at five to fiteen years of age. 3 bottle limit please.
2018 "Esquisse" - Christian's delightfully fresh and complex rosé, from a higher altitude parcel also providing the grapes for "Prologue." 6 bottle limit please.
At a recent seminar promoting "Regenerative Agriculture," based on no-till farming, we thought of Christian's great work in the vines - the diverse tress and plants in the vineyard, minimal if any plowing - usually just a "décavillonnage" along the vines - and his avoidance of the "organic" copper-sulfate treatments against mildew. His vineyard is effectively sequestering carbon deep in the soil, all year, as opposed to the bare, eroded land around him! Christian's attention is primarily on the health of his soils, the most important factor in producing true wines of terroir. His vineyards are a glorious oasis of green, even in winter, surrounded by the herbicided, eroded hillsides of conventional farming.
Picking is done in several passes with a careful selection in the vineyards, as maturation varies due to the diversity of vegetation in and around the vines. Christian aims for mature grapes, but that have low sugar levels, in the style of Chauvet, with normally 10.5 to 12.5% alcohol as finished wines. Vinifications here are with wild yeasts, with zero sulfur added, with usually a pied-de-cuve taken a week or two earlier from all his parcels. It's hard to communicate the committment and energy at this estate, showing that viticulture can be healthy, almost totally self-sufficient, and beneficial to its environment while producing vibrant natural wines at the highest levels of artistry! David Lillie
(Tasted from three different barrels, January 2019) Ripe plum and berry fruit aromas, blackberry liqueur, earth, rose, licorice. The palate is deep, long and elegant with earthy red currant, blackberry fruit, minerals and firm acidity, terrific length of fruit and stone, balanced and bright. This is both a superb natural wine and a great wine of terroir. Probably best 2022 - 2030. We think Christian practices some of the best farming we've ever seen - his soils are covered with thick growth, even in winter and fruit trees grow between the vines. His techniques are complex and intelligent, the product of forty years of experience with organic and biodynamic farming. Thank-you, Christian Ducroux! David Lillie
(Tasted from barrel and vat, January 2019) Lovely light pink/red color, pretty red currant, raspberry fruit, ripe, bright and earthy. Delicate and ethereal, slightly funky, yum...!
(Tasted from barrel January 2018) Deeper, dark fruits than the 2017 Exspectatia, more tannin, a bit "animal" - "a ittle Brett in this barrel" said Christian, smiling, but still delicious and with great depth and minerality. Needs time. A 2010 tasted recently showed beautifully. David Lillie