July 2021 | Terroir Clubby Caileen Brison
From the Importer
Guillaume and Aude Lavollée represent the fourth generation of vignerons at Génot-Boulanger. Their wines are produced exclusively from estate-owned vineyards, located along all three Burgundy côtes, from Chambolle Musigny, down to the domaine in Meursault, and on to Mercurey. With 22 hectares, Génot-Boulanger is one of only a few family-owned Burgundian domaines to produce such a diverse range. (They produce wine from over 30 appellations!)
Since 2008, Guillaume and Aude have worked painstakingly to improve the quality of their wines, converting to organic farming practices and experimenting with biodynamics. The domaine’s philosophy is “maximum work in the vineyards for minimum intervention in the cuverie.” This has translated to wines that are first and foremost true to their terroir.
Upon opening, the wine is classic in tone with lemon curd and tart shell, but also reserved in a way that makes you believe that more will come with time. After a while you start to sense Thai lime flowers, a very light pineapple candy, and an enveloping flint and wet granite. On the palate, the wine is sea salt with well-integrated neutral, light toast oak. The finish is where the wine really shines and the wine warms well to a generous profile of the previous notes. On day two the oak does start to emerge more, but in a welcomed manner (read: not abrasive or aggressive). In addition, the sea salt starts to become more prominent alongside the curd notes, making for a delicacy of a wine. I expect this could age gracefully over the next 10-17 years, but that should not discredit how well the wine is showing now.
From the Importer
Château La Canorgue is the quintessential image of Provence. Situated just below the hilltop village of Bonnieux, the idyllic 17th century manor has been home to six generations of the Margan family. In fact, the estate is so picturesque that in 2006, the movie adaptation of Peter Mayle’s best-selling novel, A Good Year, was filmed here. But long before the château, this historic property was the site of a Roman villa known for its natural spring. Truffle oaks, mulberry trees, olive groves, and a 200-year-old cherry orchard thrive here—even in the driest of years. Jean-Pierre Margan and his daughter, Natalie, farm 42 hectares of terraced vineyards, all of which have been farmed organically since 1978. Although certified in organic viticulture, the Margans also incorporate biodynamic principles into their farming practices, proving their continued commitment to their terroir. Yields are kept low at 30 hl/ha—a staggering half of what is authorized in the appellation. This level of quality control has made this estate one of the leading producers in the Lubéron AOC.
This Provence style rose from the Rhone Valley is an incredibly playful yet tense rose – a perfect counterpart to either a very serious salmon dinner or an oceanside plastic cup endeavor. The aromas of soft watermelon jolly rancher, rose petals, and soft white cherries are juxtaposed against a stellar sea salt mid palate to finish. As the wine warms up a little the glass exhibits fresh violets and light guava – the nose is soft and the acid is silky, leading to a near perfect rose. As mentioned previously, this wine is a shapeshifter and could pair with either the classiest Cioppino or a grilled cheese by the water – choose your own adventure. Drink now – 2024 (rose can age!). Serve in a glass with a larger bowl, serve close to 45°C.
From the Producer
The winery is situated on a ridge line in the Macayamas Mountains; as with other Spring Mountain hillside wineries they sometimes receive snow in the winter. The vineyards range in elevation from about 1400 to 2100 feet with these uppermost vineyards among some of the higher vineyards found in Spring Mountain. Their total acreage is significant; five hundred in total of which about ninety are planted to vine. Their water source comes from the rainfall each year – two ponds on property store water for use throughout the season on the vines as needed.
Cain Vineyard & Winery is cradled in a spectacular bowl overlooking the Napa Valley from the crest of the Spring Mountain District. We are dedicated to the creation of three Cabernet blends, each drawn from its own unique vineyard sources, each with its own distinctive signature: Cain Cuvée, Cain Concept, and Cain Five.
Despite being a 2012 vintage, this wine could still benefit from some time in glass or decanter. On the pop the wine is still tense with aromatics of black olive juice with a juicy, generous fruit profile. The tannins are still surprisingly tight with complimentary acid and a bright blue and purple fruit. After several hours, the fruit transitions to a cherry profile getting slightly darker with time. The structure homogenizes and becomes more integrated and enjoyable with tones of light tobacco wrapper and plum skins. On day two the wine oxidizes beautifully with deep chocolate and caramel with sage oil and Luxardo cherry liquor. Overall, I prefer the wine on day two, which is a compliment to the initial statement. The wine would be best served with beef wellington, beef pot pie, or something with darker protein and a buttery, rich bread (there’s so much structure in this wine!). Drink now – 2028, serve close to 60°F, decant 20 minutes or open 1 hour before serving, serve in an all purpose red glass.