It has been a while since we wrote about the wines we made last year, which we have called Cuvée 1 and Cuvée 2. The wines were made from Pinot Noir grapes, verjus, which were picked from a Corton grand cru vineyard. The two wines have been aging in oak barrels in our cave, “wine cellar”. Both wines have developed nicely. However, Cuvée 1 which was picked earlier than Cuvée 2, has yet to go through its malo-lactic fermentation. We are hoping that as the temperature outside raises the cave will warm up and the malo-lactic fermentation will kick off.
Since putting the wine in the cave the only intervention we have had has been to top up the barrels. Topping is done because over time a small quantity of wine evaporates. In French we call this, “les part des anges”, which means the angels part. We top the two barrels with the same wine that is inside each barrel. To do this we had set aside a small amount of each of the wines when the alcoholic fermentation was completed. Topping up is done regularly thought the élevage. In the first couple of months that follow putting the wine in the barrels it is generally weekly. Later as the wine saturates the wood less and less topping is required. At this point we are topping up once every month.
So, the other day when we were topping up the barrels we thought, why not take a half bottle of each wine to really give them a try… Here is what we thought.
The wine is clear with a brilliant a ruby red color. Swirling the glass releases aromas of dark red fruits, blackberries and raspberries. It hits the pallet quick with a sour raspberry acidity mellowing out into ripe red fruits. The mid-pallet is leather, fresh herbs and oak tannins. The wine has really evolved well and while the attack is slightly acidic it is a nice wine. Fingers crossed the malo-lactic fermentation will start and take care of that acidity.
As the wine takes the shape of the glass the clear cherry red color shows itself. Directly we are greeted by young red fruits and spices a classic Pinot Noir nose. Tasting the wine the aromas translate directly, strawberry, cherry and red licorice. The wine develops beautifully and ends with a spicy, white pepper finish. The acidity is also quite high but it is well balanced with the tannins and the alcohol.