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Burgundy Wine Cellars

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Type
White Wine
Domaine Germain Pere et Fils Saint Romain Blanc 2015

Domaine Germain Pere et Fils Saint Romain Blanc 2015

Appellation
Saint Romain
Region
Côte de Beaune
Vintage
2015
Add To Cart
$37.00
 
SKU: EGER01W-15
Overview

With admirable yields (45hl/ha). This Saint Romain white is taken seriously right from the start. Add 30% new oak and 8-9 months of aging and batonnage, and you get a very classy Chardonnay with the unique and superbly subtle Saint Romain minerality, full, rich and dense, with elegant floral notes, good acidity in its youthful charm. We found this wine on a restaurant list in Santenay and were so impressed we went the next day to meet the producers. An excellent bottle.

Producer

DOMAINE GERMAIN PERE ET FILS

Saint Romain

The Domaine Germain Père et Fils began in 1955 with vineyards situated uniquely in Saint Romain. At the base of its cliff, Saint Romain is a picturesque village, and was one of the earliest settlements and sanctuaries of the vine in Gallo-Roman Burgundy.

Today the Domaine Germain covers more than 33 acres, with wines in Saint Romain, Pommard and Beaune. Arnaud Germain, grandson of Bernard Germain, the domain’s founder, joined his parents in 2009. The three of them together have developed both the vinicultural and the commercial side of their activities, with Germain wines winning awards in France and abroad.

Experience and modern techniques both in the vines and in the cellar combine to produce wines of excellent quality for reasonable prices. Their reasoned, curative approach to their vineyard work, manual weed control through plowing and green harvest to control yields are all key to this success.

Red wines are vinified in a traditional manner:

Harvesting by hand, manual sorting in the vineyard

Complete destemming

Vatting: pulp = aroma, pips = tannin, skin = colour

Maceration (12 to 16 days): extracting the aromas, colour and tannins

Cap-punching and pumping over: Blending the must

Alcoholic fermentation: the sugars turn into alcohol (action of the yeasts)

Devatting: pumping the juice

Transferring to barrels or vats: depending on the wine, the year, the wine we want to produce

Filtering

Bottling, washing, labelling, selling

For our white wines, the vinification steps are:

Harvesting by hand

The whole bunch is pressed

Vatting: for static clarification

Transferring to barrels or vats: depending on the wine, the year, the wine we want to produce

Blending

Tartaric stabilisation: chilling

Filtering

Bottling, washing, labelling, selling

WINES

WHITE

SAINT ROMAIN

ALIGOTE

CREMANT DE BOURGOGNE

REDS

SAINT ROMAIN

SAINT ROMAIN ‘SOUS LE CHATEAU’

SAINT ROMAIN ‘LA PERRIERE’

POMMARD

BEAUNE .MONTAGNE SAINT DESIRE’

BEAUNE 1er CRU ‘LES AIGROTS’

BEAUNE 1er CRU ‘LES MONTREVENOTS’

BOURGOGNE HAUTES COTES DE BEAUNE

BOURGOGNE ROSE

Vintage

BURGUNDY 2015 VINTAGE

We have resisted writing the Elden Selections Burgundy 2015 harvest report until now (April 2017), mainly to let the hub-bub and hyperbole settle down, but more importantly to be sure that the claims we are about to make are justified. We’ve seen too many vintages vaunted as ‘the year of the century’, when really the wines simply showed well young. Burgundy 2015 is a truly extraordinary vintage. The reds are rich, ripe, balanced and powerful. And from all over the region they express chiseled, focused terroir. Despite their youthful seductive charm, these are wines to keep, with serious ripe tannins already melted into explosive fruit.

Comparisons have been drawn with the 2005 vintage, though there is more concentration in the 2015s than in the 2005s. Like a caterpillar changing to a butterfly, great vintages often go to sleep in the bottle. And 2005 is just reawakening from several ‘dumb’ years. It’s been worth the wait. The wines have metamorphosed. 2015 might be similar. And if the comparison is apt, investors in 2015 should appreciate the youthful beauty of this great vintage now, but be prepared to be patient.

That said, 2005 was no ‘year of the century’. But 2015 is also being compared to 1990, which arguably was. And I hear that Michel Lafarge, one of Burgundy’s respected elders, says he remembers drinking 1929s, and he draws parallels. The whites are a bit more uneven, and early reports claimed that the vintage lacks acidity. Certainly, these are wines which are riper and more luxuriant than the exquisite purity of 2014 white Burgundy. But there is no risk that well-made wines will be overly ample or flabby. The best wines will have benefited from the barrel. Comparisons are drawn to 1985, one of the great vintages in white.

The heterogeneity in 2015 white Burgundy is due to the tricky growing season, which was mostly hot and dry, but which cooled significantly in September. Was it better to pick early or late? And did the wine deserve more or less barrel aging? These are questions which will be answered producer-by-producer, bottle-by-bottle over the coming years. But what is clear is that they 2015s are concentrated, fresh and structured.

We believe that to understand a vintage, it is important to look at the weather. Because Burgundy is a single-grape wine, the only thing that changes from year to year in a producer’s vineyard is the weather. So we look for patterns and try to analyze what makes a good year, a bad year…and in this case, an excellent year.

The winter of 2014-2015 was uneventful. It was never really cold, but when it was, it was dry. Mostly it was mild, so we had more rain than snow. We would need the replenished water reserves in the long hot summer ahead.

April was warm and dry, and bud-burst took place early. Mornings in May were sunny, afternoons cloudy, and overall cool and dry. The vines began to flower in the last week of the month, so we knew we were looking at a harvest in early to mid-September.

In early July, the mood started to mount towards hopeful. The weather had been steady, dry and cool. But slowly during the month, temperatures began to rise, and in the last week of July hit 30C. The flowering had been successful, so there was a good crop on the vines.

Day after day of warm dry conditions brought drought considerations into play. But no hail for once! August continued in this way. Hot and dry. A little welcome rain later in the month, but just enough to keep the stress levels down. But no storms or hail. And extremely healthy fruit on the vine. No rot, no mildew, no odium. The mood was optimistic, even euphoric.

Harvest ostensibly started the first Monday of September. And days later the weather broke, and a cool period set in for ideal harvest conditions, stabilizing acidity levels. It stayed this way until September 12th when the first serious rain in two months fell in the southern part of the region. Harvest was disrupted for a few days, but the 19th, it was pretty much all over.

Appellation

SAINT ROMAIN

COTE DE BEAUNE

Saint Romain stands at the foot of an impressive rock outcrop, with a magnificent view out over the Saone River valley and across the vineyards below. Because of this commanding position, there have been settlements on this spot since early pre-historic times. And so some of the earliest plantations of vines were in this protected narrow valley, just off-line from the main escarpment of the Côte d’Or to the west of Auxey-Duresses. Above and beyond the village are vineyards classified Hautes Côtes de Beaune. Appellation Saint Romain can be either white or red, and the grapes are the traditional Burgundian Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

Produced in the commune of Saint Romain, the appellation Saint Romain has no premiers or grands crus. However, many wines mention the name of the single-vineyard (climat) from which they originate.

Wines

There are several distinct soil zones in the valley leading up to the village of Saint Romain. Coming up the valley from Auxey-Duresses, vines on the left are apt to be Pinot Noir. On the right in a south-facing amphitheater, you find the majority of the village vineyards. And here there is a distinct difference in soil make up, with the hills flanking to the left being better for Chardonnay. Traditionally, Saint Romain was white, but producers have found parcels that work well for Pinot, so that today white accounts for about 55% of the production.

Chardonnay benefits from a rich vein of limestone here (calcaire actif) that gives Saint Romain whites a distinctive freshness in their minerality. Lemony notes are frequently lime tinted. And white floral notes are common.

Pinot Noir shows itself as ruby red in youth with red fruit notes of raspberry and cherry. These wines drink well young, especially in riper years, with forward fruit and spicy mineral notes. They have aging potential up to 10 years.

Terroirs

Notably higher (at between 350-410 meters) and cooler than the rest of the Cote d’Or, these vineyards have the potential to produce a style of Burgundy all their own. With a very interesting mix of geologic strata based on lias from the earliest Jurassic period, we get swirls of limestone and marl, notably calcaire actif that is particularly interesting for Chardonnay and produces a specific minerality completely different from other zones of white Burgundy production.

Color

Red wines - Pinot Noir

White wines - Chardonnay

Production surface area

1 hectare (ha) = 2.4 acres

Reds: 39.22 ha

Whites: 57.03 ha

Food

The freshness in the minerality of Saint Romain white makes it a perfect aperitif wine. But it also lends itself to preparations similar to those you choose for Chablis. Escargot, goat cheese, shellfish in general and oysters in particular. Saint Romain reds can be elegant and velvety, but are often most appreciated for the lustiness of youth. Perfumed and spicy, it goes well with white meats and veal, and roasted birds.

Appellations

The following are village climats:

Au Bas de Poillange

Combe Bazin

En Chevrot

En Gollot

En Poillange

L'Argillat

La Croix Neuve

La Périère

Le Dos d'Ane

Le Jarron

Le Marsain

Le Village Bas

Le Village Haut

Sous la Velle

Sous le Château

Sous Roche

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