2006 Domaine Andre Bonhomme Vire-Clesse

Domaine Andre Bonhomme Vire-Clesse

The first time we met Andre Bonhomme, it was 25 years ago. We had driven from Paris to Macon after drinking a bottle of Bonhomme 1978 at Taillevent. Jean-Claude Vrinat had told us where to go, and the sommelier had arranged the visit, adding quite simply, "C'est le Meursault de Macon" ("It's the Meursault of Macon).

Andre Bonhomme, even in 1983, was a throwback -- that kind of madly determined French winegrower who was possessed by Chardonnay. That first tasting of Bonhomme's perfectly crafted Chardonnays, lightly kissed with oak, started with the luxuriously rich 1978-- the wine the sommelier had paired with scallops at the world's greatest restaurant. But it didn't end there. Andre sensed our excitement with his wines, and by the time we got to the perfectly preserved, incredibly youthful 1969, it was clear that the sommelier had undersold Andre Bonhomme. This wasn't just Meursault; this was the quality of the very best of Meursault.

Andre Bonhomme
Andre Bonhomme
Unfortunately, and sadly, Andre Bonhomme, the first Maconnais grower ever to bottle wine under his own label in the 1950s, suffered a stroke a couple years ago. The last vintage he really touched was the superbly rich 2006 harvest, and this Vire Clesse, from the villages of Vire and Clesse in Macon, is Bonhomme at his best. Rich, slightly honeyed, but wonderfully vibrant and refreshing, the 2006 Vire Clesse is the work of the man who made it to Taillevent.

Tasting Notes from the WineAccess Travel Log
Light straw color. Deep rich nose combines aromas of pear, apple, beeswax and a touch of wet stones. Richer on the palate than the Macon from the same vintage. Expect the beeswax notes to grow deeper, and hints of honey to emerge with age. Drink now-2015.