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Type
Red Wine

Jean-Jacques Girard Savigny les Beaune 1er Cru 'Les Peuillets' 2018

Appellation
Savigny les Beaune 1er Cru
Region
Côte de Beaune
Vintage
2018
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$59.00
 
SKU: EJJG05R-18
Overview

One thing is certain, Jean-Jacques Girard knows Savigny les Beaune Every angled hillside, every rivulet, every cut in the rock, where the sun shines and where the dew settles. Me makes several different Savignys and a horizontal tasting in Jean-Jacques' cellars is a master class in the appellation. This Savigny-les Beaune 1er Cru 'Les Peuillets' is supple and lacy, with spicy almost explosive black and red currant fruit. There's an intensity that makes the young fruit charming, but which really shows the structure for aging.

Producer

Jean-Jacque Girard's website says that his family was growing grapes in Savigny-les Beaune back in 1529. That, as the French say, is 'formidable', and would make the domain one of the oldest in Burgundy. But really what matters to us today is what happened to the domain in the past generation. In the late 90s, the original and venerable Domaine Girard-Vollot was split between Georges Girard's two sons Jean-Jacques and Phillipe. The original domain was about 38 acres. And since the split, Jean-Jacques has built his holdings back to over 40 acres, making it one of the most impressive domains in Savigny.

Vintage

BURGUNDY 2018 VINTAGE

There has been talk over the past year of the 2018 vintage in Burgundy being one of the greatest of all time.  Comparisons with the mythical 1947, and all that.  But let’s be careful and take a closer look.

We’ve tasted some marvelous wines, both white and red, and from all of the appellation levels.  Purity and concentration would be the key words across the board.

But lest we forget, 2018 was the hottest vintage in Burgundy since 2003.  And frankly, we were expecting wines like we got in 2003: flabby whites and Cote du Rhone-like reds.  But that did not happen.  And the secret to understanding 2018 Burgundy lies in understanding the difference between these two very hot years.

If you look at 2018 from start to finish, not only was it hot, it was dry: 50% less precipitation than the annual average over the past 30 years. However, if you were here in the early part of the year, you’ll certainly remember the rain. ​

After a very dry summer in 2017, winter 2017-18 was wet. It rained nearly every day through March and into April.  And the vine was slow to bud.

That all changed in the middle of April. Wet soil and higher temperatures brought on explosive growth in the vineyards that the vignerons had a tough time keeping up with.  In a week we went from bud burst to unfurled leaves.

The first flowers burst in mid-May. The crop set regularly with very little disruption, and summer settled in. The early wet conditions followed by April’s warmth saw the onset of mildew, but the fungus never stood a chance.

It was a hot and sunny summer. Some would say it was a heat wave and a drought. And we started to see signs of stress in vineyards in certain sectors. Things were better where there was a little rain.  But August was bone dry. In fact, there was no rain from June 15th to the end of October.

It was about this time that comparisons to 2015 cropped up. You could see ripeness rapidly approaching, and there was talk of harvest starting at the end of August.

The vines were incredibly healthy; no moisture means no threat from mildew or odium. No rot.  Good ripeness.  ​

And, for the first time since 2009….a normal yield! So, let the harvest begin!

And it did, in the last days of August.  What was most astonishing right from the start was that the perceived acidity levels seem OK.  Granted, there’s no malic acid, but the levels of tartaric acid seem to be compensating, and there is an over-all impression of balance. 

Also amazing was the amount of juice the crop produced.  Not only was the yield bigger than the past 10 years’ average, but the amount of juice set a record for Burgundy.  So there will be a lot of 2018 around.

And all this in a year that felt more like the south of Spain than Burgundy as we know it.  The only thing we can attribute the quality of 2018 to is the abundant winter rains, and the vine’s ability to go searching for water when it needs it.

Appellation

SAVIGNY-LES BEAUNE

COTE DE BEAUNE

Between the Corton mountain and Beaune, the landscape opens up into a gently sloping valley. Here, the hills of the Côte de Beaune recede a little on either side of the little river Rhoin. Savigny les Beaune is one of the less celebrated, best-kept secrets in Burgundy, mainly because it is hidden away in this valley, away from the north-south wine route that runs through the Cote. For this, its wines are among the best value you will find in the region.

Produced only in the commune of Savigny-lès-Beaune, appellation Savigny-lès-Beaune includes 22 premiers crus.

Wines

Red Savigny is a deep cherry color, going towards garnet. Its bouquet should be of red and black fruits (blackcurrant, cherry, raspberry) and flowers (violet). The body is ample and discreetly tannic and the fruit is generally forward. Roundness, volume and power should all be there. And when the balance is right, Savigny red can be among the most charming wines of the Cote de Beaune.

Savigny whites should be greeny gold, sometimes pale. Its nose is flowery and fresh, biscuity and citric with a touch of minerality in the best parcels. A lively attack keeps the overall effect fresh and clean, fleshy, persistent, and occasionally a touch of spice.

Terroirs

The gradient in this dome-shaped valley is gentle at first but steeper as you climb. Altitude varies from 250 to 400 meters. The lower slopes consist of alluvia from the river Rhoin. Higher, the geology is similar to that of the Corton mountain. At the Pernand-Vergelesses end, exposure is southerly and the soils are gravelly with a scattering of oolitic ironstone. Lower down, the red-brown limestone becomes more clay and pebbles. On the opposite side of the valley mouth, the slope faces east and the limestone soils include some sand.

Color

Red wines - Pinot Noir

White wines - Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc

Production surface area

1 hectare (ha) = 2.4 acres

Reds : 306.19 ha (including 127.99 ha premier cru)

Whites : 41.63 ha (including 12.39 ha premier cru)

Food

Savigny red is solid and mouth-watering, with power enough to match for good cuts of beef, or even cooked foie gras . With roast fowl, the wine's fleshiness will compensate for the fibrous flesh of the bird and in the same way may soften more aromatic poultry dishes. For cheeses, it would do better with creamy types such as Chaource, Brie de Meaux, Reblochon, Mont d'Or or Époisses. The whites are lively with a straightforward attack, so would suit sauced fish dishes, while its richness can stand up to buttery preparations and sauces. It works well with goat cheeses, Gruyère and Comté, and fresh, milky cheeses like Cîteaux.

Appellations

On the label, the appellations 'Savigny-lès-Beaune' and 'Savigny-lès-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:

Aux Clous

Aux Fourneaux

Aux Gravains

Aux Guettes

Aux Serpentières

Basses Vergelesses

Bataillère

Champ Chevrey

La Dominode

Les Charnières

Les Hauts Jarrons

Les Hauts Marconnets

Les Jarrons

Les Lavières

Les Marconnets

Les Narbantons

Les Peuillets

Les Rouvrettes

Les Talmettes

Les Vergelesses

Petits Godeaux

Redrescul

The following climats are village wines from a single vineyard, known as a lieu-dit.

Aux Champs Chardons

Aux Champs des Pruniers

Aux Fourches

Aux Grands Liards

Aux Petits Liards

Aux Pointes

Dessus de Montchenevoy

Dessus les Gollardes

Dessus les Vermots

Ez Connardises

Grands Picotins

Guetottes

Le Village

Les Bas Liards

Les Bourgeots

Les Godeaux

Les Gollardes

Les Goudelettes

Les Petits Picotins

Les Peuillets

Les Pimentiers

Les Planchots de la Champagne

Les Planchots du Nord

Les Prévaux

Les Ratausses

Les Saucours

Les Vermots

Moutier Amet

Roichottes

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