Matthieu and Bernard Baudry

2019 Baudry Chinon "Les Grézeaux" and other delights from this great estate...

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Bernard Baudry began his domain in 1975 with two hectares, after working for the great Loire Valley oenologist and gourmet, Jacques Puisais. Gradually expanding the estate with great parcels on the varied terroirs of Chinon, Bernard and his son Matthieu now farm 32 hectares in the communes of Cravant-les-Coteaux and Chinon. The estate is indisputably one of the great wine domains of France. All aspects of winemaking at Domaine Baudry are performed with the utmost intelligence and care: superb organic farming with their own composts, careful manual harvests, vinifications perfectly suited to each terroir with no added SO2 - only a tiny adddition as needed before bottling -  and aging in carefully chosen cement or barrels, with no new oak in the cellar. Which brings us to the release of the superb 2019 "Les Grézeaux" - a beautiful Chinon for current drinking or cellaring for 15 to 20 years!

Vines in "Les Grézeaux"

One of the most pleasurable red wines of the Loire Valley, the Baudry Chinon "Les Grézeaux" is from a unique parcel of old vines at the bottom of the slope in Sonnay (near Cravant-les-Coteaux) on a bed of gravel over a base of clay, sand and limestone. The grapes are harvested by hand of course and fermented with wild yeasts with zero SO2 added during vinification. Beginning in 2017, the wine ages in large cement vats by Nico Velo, which are slightly porous. Les Grézeaux always has an elegant silky texture and wonderful freshness, making it delicious as a young wine, combined with the ability to age beautifully for 20 years and more in good vintages.

The Baudry's assessment of the 2019 vintage: "So Savory - A mild, dry winter gave the vines an early start. Unfortunately, Spring frost hit the vineyards twice in early April. Harvest loss wasn’t as severe as in 2016 and 2017, but production dropped by 20%. Cool temperatures in May and heavy rainfall in early June affected blooming. Fruit set was once again hampered by the extreme weather conditions. The second half of June, as well as July and August, were extremely hot and dry, with temperatures often over 40 °C.  Hydric stress increased  during the two Summer months and seriously affected the younger vines as well as the vineyards planted on alluvial deposits. Fortunately, the vines benefited from some long-expected rainfall around the end of September. The grape-harvest started on September 30 and lasted until October 8 under light rainfall that did not affect the harvest or the quality of the grapes. The Chenins Blancs did well and withstood the freak weather conditions; their concentration and balance are superb. The reds, though not quite as spicy as the 2018s, are generous and redolent of red fruit and violets. The savory character of the 2019 reds seduced us from the onset. The tannins are well-integrated, and the wines are remarkably balanced."

Also on offer today:

2020 "Les Granges" - From 30 to 35 year-old vines on gravel and sandy soils with a bit of clay near the Vienne river in organic agriculture. Hand harvested, fermented with wild yeasts, ages for 8 to 10 months in cement vats, minimal addition of SO2 only prior to bottling. This "basic" cuvée from Bernard and Matthieu Baudry has gotten more and more "serious" as the vines age, giving a wine that is  delightful to drink young, but that shows surprising complexity and mineral character as well.

2019 "Domaine" - The Baudry Chinon "Domaine" is always one of our favorite reds from the Loire Valley and it's a sensational value as well.   All Cabernet Franc of course, a blend of 75% from a parcel in St. Louans, where the thin clay/limestone soils give earthy well-structured wines, with 25% from gravel soils near Cravant, giving supple fruit and freshness. Organic farming, wild-yeast fermentation, aging in 5 to 10 year-old wooden vats and cement with almost no added SO2.

2018 "Le Clos Guillot" - Le Clos Guillot is a beautiful south-east facing vineyard, just east of the town of Chinon, above the Clos de l'Olive and adjacent to Le Chêne Vert. The upper slope of the parcel is clay over limestone (the lower part has sand and gravel over the rock, which permitted a tiny separate production from franc de pied vines, now mostly deceased) and the vines are young, planted from 1993 to 2000. Fermentation in wooden cuves, 12 months of aging in three to ten year-old barriques, 9 additional months in unlined cement vats. We have been buying this wine since it's first production in 2000 – it's one of the most elegant and Burgundian of Chinons. The 2018 is magnificent!

2020 Rosé - (We saved a few bottles)  The beautiful Baudry Chinon Rosé is 100% Cabernet Franc, usually 50% from clay/silex soils and 50% from gravel soils, as in "les Grézeaux." As always this is one of the most elegant and delicious of all French rosés, a reflection of the superb organic vineyard work and the great terroir possesed by the Baudrys as well as their great skill in vinifications with minimal added SO2. Matthieu Baudry's report on the 2020 Rose: "Rose 2020 looks like his older brothers, but the fermentation was much quicker than the 2018 and 2019. The Rosé 2020 is very dry: 1.2g/L RS versus 2.2 for the 2018 vintage. For me the flavors are more delicate and I prefer the balance of the 2020 over the 2018/19 which were more exotic." 

Normal 10% case/mixed case discount applies. Wines arrive Wed 7/14 - "Les Granges" and "Rosé" are last of current stock.

 

L to R: Domaine, Le Clos Guillot, Les Grézeaux, Les Granges, La Croix Boissée Blanc et Rouge

 

Baudry 2019 Chinon Les Grézeaux

One of the most pleasurable red wines of the Loire Valley, the Baudry Chinon Les Grézeaux is from a unique parcel of sixty year-old vines near the bottom of the slope in Sonnay (near Cravant-les-Coteaux) on a bed of gravel over a base of clay, sand and limestone. The grapes are harvested by hand of course and fermented with wild yeasts with zero SO2 added during vinification. Beginning in 2017, the wine ages in large cement vats by Nico Velo, which are slightly porous. Les Grézeaux always has an elegant silky texture and wonderful freshness, making it delicious as a young wine, combined with the ability to age beautifully for 20 years and more in good vintages.  The 2019 shows a dark black/purple color with quite floral blackberry and strawberry aromas, with a bit of earth, spice and citrus. Very silky and supple on the palate  with deep stony black fruits, meaty, chalky and long. Good acidity in the finish with graphite and velvety black fruits, quite elegant.  Perhaps not as rich and structured as the 2018 but very sapid and long. This is a lovely "Les Grézeaux" and is highly recommended for early drinking or ten to twenty  years of cellaring.  David Lillie

  • red
  • 14 in stock
  • $28.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Baudry 2019 Chinon Cuvée Domaine

 The Baudry Chinon "Domaine" is always one of our favorite reds from the Loire Valley and it's a sensational value as well.   All Cabernet Franc of course, a blend of 75% from a parcel in St. Louans, where the thin clay/limestone soils give earthy well-structured wines, with 25% from gravel soils near Cravant, giving supple fruit and freshness. Organic farming, wild-yeast fermentation, aging in 5 to 10 year-old wooden vats and cement with almost no added SO2. The 2019 Domaine  shows a deep red/black color and beautiful fresh aromas of ripe red and black fruits with hints of earth, roast meat, black pepper and violet. The palate is dense and sapid with supple strawberry and blackberry liqueur, lacking a bit of the sweet, lush character of the 2018, but showing more underlying mineral flavors lifted by bright acidity. The fruit is quite ripe but the wine is beautifully balanced - it's delicious now and will be singing in 2031 as well. Highly recommended.   David Lillie

  • red
  • 53 in stock
  • $23.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Baudry 2018 Chinon Le Clos Guillot

Le Clos Guillot is a beautiful south-east facing vineyard, just east of the town of Chinon, above the Clos de l'Olive and adjacent to Le Chêne Vert. The upper slope of the parcel is clay over limestone (the lower part has sand and gravel over the rock, which permitted a tiny separate production from franc de pied vines, now mostly deceased) and the vines are young, planted from 1993 to 2000. Fermentation in wooden cuves, 12 months of aging in three to ten year-old barriques, 9 additional months in unlined cement vats. We have been buying this wine since it's first production in 2000 – it's one of the most elegant and Burgundian of Chinons. It's become incrreasingly difficult to write superlatives about this wine, as each vintage since 2014 has been superb in it's own way. And now 2018, a vintage the Baudrys describe as "magnificent!" The ripeness of fruit in this vintage diplays a different side of Cabernet Franc with the more traditional light raspberry/strawberry aromatics enhanced by darker fruits: blackberry, black raspberry and boysenberry with violet and earth, that remain vibrant and bright. The color is deep black with a purple rim. The palate shows sensational purity, freshness and elegance with a fabulous dense, silky, calcaire texture and fabulous length of pure black fruits and minerals. While this wine is amazingly delicious now, it should be very interesting with long cellaring as well. Highly recommended!  David Lillie

  • red
  • 3 in stock
  • $38.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur
Sorry, the Following have Already Sold

Baudry 2020 Chinon Les Granges

From 30 to 35 year-old vines on gravel and sandy soils with a bit of clay near the Vienne river in organic agriculture. Hand harvested, fermented with wild yeasts, ages for 8 to 10 months in cement vats, minimal addition of SO2 only prior to bottling. This "basic" cuvée from Bernard and Matthieu Baudry has gotten more and more "serious" as the vines age, giving a wine that is  delightful to drink young, but that shows surprising complexity and mineral character as well. The wine shows aromas of ripe raspberry and bluberry with hints of earth, stone, pepper and herbs. Really an old school Cab Franc, with cedar notes, and textbook bell pepper. The palate is quite mineral with firm stony acids underlying lush berry fruits, and is beautifully balanced at 12.5% alcohol. Quite structured for "les Granges," this is delicious now, served cool, with roast chicken, white meats, charcuterie and mild cheeses and will improve with 3 to 5 years of aging.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $21.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Baudry, Bernard & Matthieu 2020 Chinon Rosé

The beautiful Baudry Chinon Rosé is 100% Cabernet Franc, usually 50% from clay/silex soils and 50% from gravel soils, as in "les Grézeaux." As always this is one of the most elegant and delicious of all French rosés, a reflection of the superb organic vineyard work and the great terroir possesed by the Baudrys as well as their great skill in vinifications with minimal added SO2. Matthieu Baudry's report on the 2020 Rose: "Rose 2020 looks like his older brothers, but the fermentation was much quicker than the 2018 and 2019. The Rosé 2020 is very dry: 1.2g/L RS versus 2.2 for the 2018 vintage. For me the flavors are more delicate and I prefer the balance of the 2020 over the 2018/19 which were more exotic."  6 bottle maximum, please, arrival mid-May.

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
  • 0 in stock
  • $21.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur