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Red Wine

Domaine Michel Arcelain Beaune 1er Cru 'Clos des Mouches' 2021

Appellation
Beaune 1er Cru
Region
Côte de Beaune
Vintage
2021
6 In Stock
Add To Cart
$115.00
 
SKU: EARC01R-21
Overview

Even though the best-known Beaune 'Clos des Mouches' (from Domaine Drouhin) is a Chardonnay and sits on a pedestal on the world stage, most Clos des Mouches is red. The best known, and arguably the best parcel of vines on the slopes above Beaune, it can be either white or red. So put Michel Arcelain's perfect Pinot vines in a vineyard of this caliber, and you get something special. Michel comes from the old school. He thinks that women like his Clos des Mouches and men like his Pommard. But be real! What he really means is that his Clos des Mouches is elegant, lacy and fine, fresh and floral, with impeccable balanced intensity. And it is! This is an example of meticulous winemaking in a world-class parcel of vines. 

Winemaker

Michel and Mado Arcelain have been working their domain in Pommard together since they were married in 1963. The domain is made up of parcels of vines inherited from both sides of the family and over a number of generations, as well as vineyards purchased by them over the years. These vineyards (with the exception of a small parcel planted in Chardonnay) are all Pinot Noir of the highest quality, known as Pinot Fin. The selection of quality vines was primordial for the domain, and they have been cultivated like a garden since 1949.

Vintage
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BURGUNDY 2021 VINTAGE

Nothing abides. Just as we Burgundy purists begrudgingly acknowledged the vitality and variety of the three previous hot-weather vintages, along came 2021, classic Burgundy with its frost, damp and low yields.

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Way back when, in pre-climate-change conditions, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay would struggle, year after year, to come to maturity in what was this, the northernmost spot in Europe where grapes could ripen enough to make still wine. That struggle was, in fact, the very definition of viticulture in Burgundy (chaptalization notwithstanding).

But then weather patterns started to change, not drastically, but gradually: milder winters and earlier springs; hotter summers and earlier autumns. By the time we got to 2018, then 2019 and then 2020, those mild winters were breeding grounds for mildew, the early springs were prone to killer frosts, those hot summers forced ripeness onto reticent grapes varieties, and early autumns left little time to the winemaker to sort it all out.

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If this all sounds like an accident waiting to happen, hang on to your hat; it’s all perspective.

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2018 was wet, wet, wet through winter and up to mid-April. Then an explosive bud-burst sent the winemakers scurrying to control the vegetation. But then it got hot, hot, south-of-Spain hot, and mildew never stood a chance. Early harvest, no health issues. Big crop. Great vintage.

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2019 was wet through the winter. Early bud burst, then frost took part of the crop. A warm set up flowering, but cold weather set in, taking another part of the crop. Then it got hot and very dry. Well-tend vines and, especially, old vines did well because there was last winter’s water in the water table, and good vines can go deep for water. Hot, healthy harvest.  Great really ripe vintage.

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2020 was precocious. Mild wet winter. Bud burst in mid-April. From that point on, there is not much to report weatherwise. It was hot and dry from June through to the end. Harvest started in August. Indeed, there was more stress on the winemakers than there was on the vines. When to pick? Overall, great vintage both white and red.

See a pattern?

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And 2021…well in 2021 things returned to ‘normal’ (if such a thing is possible in Burgundy!) First came devastating frosts in the early part of April, which were followed by a cool May, leading to a damp summer with the ever-present threat of hail.

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Chardonnay was more affected than Pinot Noir in that the red grapes come into leaf later. What all this means for the Burgundy harvest is that it will be a story of low yields (miniscule in places) and a late harvest.

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When the older winemakers talk about what to expect this year, words such as ‘historic’ are used and comparisons are drawn with the harvest of 1970.

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Some say we could be down 30% on 2020s already low yields. But it isn’t all bad news. Winemakers are nothing if not hardy, and their optimism cannot be shaken that easily. Fewer grapes on the vine means that those which have survived should have an intensity of flavor which sets them apart and may mark this harvest out as extraordinary. There may be other upsides, too: because the harvest is later, the grapes have had more ‘hang time’ which could mean good phenolic maturity.

Appellation

BEAUNE

COTE DE BEAUNE

A Burgundian icon and capital of Burgundy's wine trade, Beaune takes center place on the world stage during the annual Hospices wine auction. The Hôtel-Dieu with its Flemish tiled roof, the huge silent cellars of the negotiants' houses, and the wine-growing domaines of the district all attract lucrative tourism. The Beaune vineyards are among the most extensive of the Côte d'Or.

The appellation Beaune includes an astounding 42 premiers crus produced within the commune of Beaune itself. There is much variation in the appellation Beaune. Differences appear from parcel to parcel, depending on the location. Generally wines from the northern end of the commune tend to be more often intense and powerful, and those from the southern end are smoother and fuller.

Wines

The reds should be a luminous scarlet color, with classic Pinot aromas of black fruits (blackcurrant, blackberry) and red (cherry, gooseberry) with notes of humus and wet undergrowth. When older, secondary aromas of truffle, leather, and spice develop. Younger Beaune reds give the impression of biting into a bunch of fresh grapes, firm and juicy.

The whites tend to be a viscous gold flecked with green. You often get almonds, dried fruits and white flowers in the nose. They may be enjoyed for youthful fruitiness but will age admirably, especially in the better premier cru vineyards.

Terroirs

In the geosyncline of Volnay the comblanchian limestone disappears into the depths to be replaced by the overlying Rauracian. The slopes are quite steep and the soil thin (scree-derived black rendzinas). On the lower slopes are argovian marls and deep soils tinged with red from the iron in the oxfordian limestone. The foot of the slope is mostly limestone mixed with clay. Exposure ranges from east to due south. And altitudes range between 220 to 300 meters.

Color

Red wines - Pinot Noir

White wines - Chardonnay

Production surface area

1 hectare (ha) = 2.4 acres

Reds : 362.74 ha (including 281.49 ha Premier Cru)

Whites : 48.96 ha (including 36.06 ha Premier Cru)

Food

Reds from Beaune tend to be fleshy and generous, and the best can show great aromatic power and solid structure. So we partner them with firm gamey meats such as feathered game, roasted or braised. For cheeses choose the more 'gamey' style too: Époisses, Soumaintrain, Munster, Maroilles.

Beaune whites in their youth have a flowery freshness making them a good match for poultry and veal in creamy sauces, and for grilled sea-fish. When older and fleshier they enfold cheeses such as Cîteaux, Comté, and creamier goat cheeses.

Appellations

On the label, the appellations 'Beaune' and 'Beaune 1er Cru' may be followed by the name of a specific vineyard, known as a climat.

The following climats are classified as premier cru:

A l'Ecu

Aux Coucherias

Aux Cras

Belissand

Blanches Fleurs

Champs Pimont

Clos de l'Ecu

Clos de la Feguine

Clos de la Mousse

Clos des Avaux

Clos des Ursules

Clos du Roi

En Genêt

En l'Orme

La Mignotte

Le Bas des Teurons

Le Clos des Mouches

Les Aigrots

Les Avaux

Les Boucherottes

Les Bressandes

Les Cents Vignes

Les Chouacheux

Les Epenotes

Les Fèves

Les Grèves

Les Marconnets

Les Montrevenots

Les Perrières

Les Reversés

Les Sceaux

Les Seurey

Les Sizies

Les Teurons

Les Toussaints

Les Tuvilains

Les Vignes Franches

Montée Rouge

Pertuisots

Sur les Grèves

Sur les Grèves-Clos Sainte-Anne

Clos Saint-Landry

The following climats are villagewines from a single vineyard, know as a lieu-dit:

Au Renard

Chaume Gauffriot

Dessus des Marconnets

Fb de Bouze

La Blanchisserie

La Creusotte

Le Foulot

Les Beaux Fougets

Les Bons Feuvres

Les Chardonnereux

Les Chilènes

Les Epenottes

Les Levées et les Piroles

Les Longes

Les Maladières

Les Mariages

Les Paules

Les Pointes de Tuvilains

Les Prévoles

Les rôles

Les Vérottes

Longbois

Lulunne

Montagne Saint Désiré

Montée Rouge

Siserpe

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$115.00
 
SKU: EARC01R-21
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