Descombes vineyard in Brouilly

New Year's Resolution #1: Drink More Beaujolais! Georges Descombes in Magnums; 2018 Chamonard Morgon and More!

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Try to imagine a spring or summer meal, outdoors with family and friends, with chicken, pork or perhaps magret de canard on the grill. Now think of the perfect wine - right, a delicious Cru Beaujolais from Georges Descombes and it should be in magnums as the little ones will disappear too fast! Today's offer is a unique opportunity to obtain all (except Regnié) of Descombes Cru bottlings in magnums, perfect for this year, or for 2033. (Only 12 bottles of each are available)

Georges Descombes at work...

We find the wines of Georges Descombes to be among the finest and most consistent of the Beaujolais Crus, always with moderate alcohol, lovely complex fruit and beautiful expression of each terroir. And of course the organic farming and minimal use of SO2 give the wines an extra dimension of purity and complexity of fruit. Located in Vermont, a tiny hamlet in Villié-Morgon, Georges Descombes is the unofficial fifth member of the iconic "Gang of Four": Marcel Lapierre, Jean Foillard, Jean-Paul Thévenet and Guy Breton. Georges took over the estate from his father in 1988, and immediately started shifting viticultural and oenological practices forward by practicing organic viticulture and eliminating all entrants or manipulation during vinification. A minuscule dose of sulfur is usually added before bottling to help preserve the wines. Grapes are hand-harvested, then stored in a temperature controlled container before being placed in 60 hl cement tanks. A traditional, semi-carbonic maceration occurs, and the wine ferments from its ambient yeasts. For each Cru, Georges produces old vine cuvées which are vinified separately, then aged in barrel twelve months before bottling. (Please note that the label does NOT indicate "vieilles vignes" - the wine is distinguished by its stark white background, conservative black script and red wax cap.)

Jean-Claude Chanudet

And while we're on the subject of great Beaujolais, Joseph Chamonard was one of the first growers in Morgon to adopt the ideas of Jules Chauvet and quietly made some of the greatest Beaujolais on his small estate. His daughter Geneviève and her husband Jean-Claude Chanudet took over the estate in 1990 and have continued to make small quantities of superb Morgon. Not as well known as Lapierre, Foillard, Descombes and other "stars" of the region, the wines of Domaine Chamonard are certainly of equal quality and deserve your attention. Although M. Chanudet eschews "biologique" certification, the vineyard work is exemplary, with only organic treatments and plowing in spring and early summer. The domaine has about 4 hectares of massale-selection vines averaging over 60 years-old, principally in the parcels of les Martillets, Chenes and Corcelette, planted at 10,000 vines per hectare. Harvests are late for maximum ripeness. Chanudet's winemaking is similar to Descombes and others in Morgon, with a low a combination of low-temperature carbonic maceration and conventional fermentation with indigenous yeasts, followed by 8 to 12 months in foudre. While the Chamonard Morgons always possess beautiful pure, ripe fruit, there is a lovely freshness to the wines with complex "natural" aromas and flavors, floral, earthy and very expressive of the granit terroir...

And yes, there are a few cases of Alain Coudert's great 2021 Fleuries still available, this is the end of stock...

Wines arrive Wednesday, Jan 4th please allow 2 - 3 days before pick-up/shipping

Descombes, Georges 2020 Morgon Vieilles Vignes 1.5 L

This is a classic version of the Descombes Morgon VV, showing ripe high-toned black raspberry and tart cherry aromas with plum, violet, citrus, earth and brown spice, really lovely. The elegant sappy black and red fruits continue on the palate with complex notes of blood orange,  mint and spice, quite saline and earthy as well, really showing the terroir. The wine is dense and structured but bright and balanced, finishing with refreshing acidity, citrus, cherry fruit, anise and mineral flavors. Delicious now, this should be superb in three to five years, and should drink well till 2030 and beyond.  David Lillie

  • red
  • 1 in stock
  • no discount
  • $87.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Descombes, Georges 2020 Brouilly Vieilles Vignes 1.5 L

Georges Descombes makes a tiny quantity of Brouilly Vieilles Vignes from 50 to 100 year-old vines - in some years we get none, in 2020 we have magnums! The 2020 shows a deep red/black color, with aromas of ripe blackberry and strawberry liqueur, with violet, black pepper and citrus - quite lush and pretty. Dark and earthy black fruits on the sapid well-structured palate, with good length of intense dark fruits  that are balanced by refreshing acidity in the finish. As with all the Descombes VV cuvées, there is a beautiful mineral/earthy texture that is perhaps more prominent in 2020 than in the previous two vintages.  Delicious now, perhaps best 2027 - 2032

  • red
  • 2 in stock
  • no discount
  • $87.99

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

Descombes, Georges 2020 Fleurie Vieilles Vignes 1.5L (Jan 4th)

The warm and dry 2020 vintage produced wines that are ripe and lush, but with good balanceand brightness as well. The 2020 Fleurie Vieilles Vignes shows a bright red/black color and aromas that are a beautiful blend of violet, black raspberry and blackberry with a bit of brown spice and citrus. The grainy textured  palate really shows the granite terroir, with very earthy black fruit liqueur, licorice and stone flavors in the long finish. A very young wine, decant if drinking now, this serious Fleurie should really sing after a few years in the cellar, drink until 2030+  David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $87.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Descombes, Georges 2019 Chiroubles Vieilles Vignes 1.5 L (Jan 4th

As much as I love Burgundy, there are times that the occasion calls for a beautiful Beaujolais. And a sticky night in June is just such an occasion. And with a magret of duck from the Greenmarket and sautéed tatsoi, the newly-arrived Georges Descombes 2019 Chiroubles Vieilles Vignes beckons. The robe is a marvelous mulberry purple. The nose is perfumed, with pretty notes of black raspberry, wild cherry, graphite, and spice. The ripe (but lithe) palate balances a juicy freshness of red berry and plum character with a fine-grained, earthy undercurrent of structure. But at the moment the ebullient fruit is singing with grilled duck breast (though I wouldn’t hesitate to pair with salmon, roasted zucchini and carrots with salsa verde, or saucisson) and playing off the bitterness of the mustard greens on the plate. This is a cracking bottle of Chiroubles that welcomes a light chill and seemingly banishes humidity. This should be a pleasure to taste over the next couple nights and warrants socking away a few bottles for a more mature drinking experience. This is sensational and but for a little granitic spice, this rivals the magical 2014 Regnié VV for sheer joy. John McIlwain

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $87.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Descombes, Georges 2020 Saint-Amour Vieilles Vignes 1.5 L (Jan 4th

Beginning in 2016, Georges Descombes  was able to find grapes to his liking in Saint-Amour for this unique Vieilles Vignes cuvée. The wine shows beautiful aromatics of ripe black raspberry, black cherry and plum with rose and violet and hints of citrus. The palate is supple and sappy with earthy black raspberry and red currant fruit, with a lovely texture and firm saline acidity and stone flavors in the finish. While the wine is quite delicious now, two to five years of aging will bring a softer and more complex expression. Lovely wine. David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $87.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Chamonard 2018 Morgon Le Clos de Lys (Jan 4th)

From four hectares of massale-selection, high density plantings ranging from 50 to 100 years of age in the lieu-dits of Chenes, Corcelette, and les Martillets. Jean-Claude Chanudet and his wife Geneviève (Chamonard) at Domaine Chamonard are making some of the finest wines in the Beaujolais. His father-in-law, Joseph Chamonard, was farming with organic methods and making wine in the Chauvet style along with his friends in Morgon, Guy Breton, Jean Thevenet, Marcel Lapierre and Jean Foillard. The 4 hectare estate is farmed with great care, although not certified organic, fermentations are with wild yeasts and aging is in large old casks and foudres. The wines are enjoyable young but have a great ability to age.  The 2018 is nicely balanced at 13% alcohol in this very ripe vintage, showing complex aromas of black raspberry, cherry and strawberry, very floral and earthy with hints of spice and blood orange. The palate is ripe but not at all heavy with plum, earth, citrus and mineral notes mingling with the berry fruits. The finish is long and sappy with a hint of smoke and firm acidity. This is a lovely and truly authentic natural Morgon!  David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $34.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Coudert (Clos de la Roilette) 2021 Fleurie Clos de la Roilette (Jan 4th)

2021 is another excellent vintage for Alain Coudert's Clos de la Roilette displaying the lovely fruit and firm acidity that characterizes this difficult year of very low yields. Beautiful aromas of ripe strawberry and tart plum with hints of citrus and violets. Deep citrusy red fruits coat the palate backed by bright acidity and saline mineral notes. A really lovely and well-balanced wine that's delicious now but will improve with a few years of cellaring.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $26.99

Coudert (Clos de la Roilette) 2021 Fleurie Cuvée Tardive (Jan 4th)

From eighty year-old vines on clay and granite soil in Alain Coudert's beautiful Clos de la Roliette, just over the border from Moulin-a-Vent. By "Tardive," Alain Coudert implies that one should wait for this wine to mature, in this case probably about 3 to 5 years, although those unable to wait will certainly enjoy drinking it now. Brighter and with a bit less alcohol than the previous 3 vintages, the 2021 is a classic "Tardive" to hold for a few years, then enjoy until 2035...

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $29.99