At a few dozen meters from the Montrachet Grand Cru, we enter the universe displaying some of the best terroirs of the Côte de Beaune for Chardonnay. This highly prized grape variety feels at home at Puligny-Montrachet. The soil and sub-soil character helps understand this favourable situation. We also have to underline that the hills that overlook the vineyard protect it from the winds, favouring a well-balanced and steady grape maturing. The climatic hazards are thus tempered. The 27-are vines of the domain are situated in the ancient Clos des Meix, at the very heart of Les Pucelles first growth. It overlooks Puligny-Montrachet, forming a sort of panoramic view of the most beautiful terroirs of the « Côte des Blancs », the slope is very gentle there. Its exposure is very classical: due east. The soil layer is quite deep, one meter or more, but it is fairly easy to work. The vines were planted in 1970. They are in the prime of life and the vine grower has to train them thoroughly to control their yield.
During the harvest, the grapes are first sorted out on the vines, then, if necessary, there may be a second sorting in the winery on a special sorting table. After a gentle pressing, the must is left to settle naturally for about 12 hours. This light racking of the lees enables the wine to keep a good substrate, thus being protected from oxidation and, as a consequence, preserving all its aromatic richness. It is then poured into barrels by gravity and left to ferment. The Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru Les Pucelles is matured in oak casks for 20 months (using 60% new oak).
One third of these barrels have a bigger capacity (that is 400 litres) than the traditional 228 litre 'pièce bourguignonne'. As a consequence, the woody aromas are softened, thus giving a more homogeneous structure to this cuvée. During this period, the wine is left undisturbed except for a few stirrings of the lees. Before bottling, the wine spends about three months in vats in order to homogenize its components. The winery benefits from a four- level structure enabling to handle the harvest by gravity from the arrival of the grapes to the bottling operation, without any pumping.
2014 was a year full of contrasts. After a mild and humid winter, spring was definitely sunny. June rapidly took on summer looks. A 35° heat peak was registered on the vines as early as the beginning of the month. Flowering started on the 5th of June or so in excellent weather conditions. During the summer, August rains aroused some worries but September was finally dry and bright. These conditions enabled sugar to concentrate in the bunches, however you had to be patient before launching the harvest. The beautiful late-autumn weather that is very often found in Burgundy, gave us the opportunity to harvest well-matured Chardonnays from the 17th of September on. Supported by a beautiful acidity, the wines display a straightforward and pure mouthfeel. Each of them is particularly representative of its terroir. Les Pucelles 2014 vintage was bottled on December 10th 2015.
Les Chaumées 2014 vintage was bottled on December 10th 2015.
A beautiful golden robe fills the glass. The nose opens up spontaneously in a flattering palette of aromas with very complex fragrances. You can smell various families of aromas: a delicate floral touch (honeysuckle), fruit (citrus and apple) but also aniseed and dried fruit (slightly grilled almond). On the palate you feel a very harmonious and pure matter that lingers like a caress in your mouth. It leaves a satin-smooth mouthfeel that is very persistent. A great white wine and a wonderful keeper.