When the Fleurie appellation was created in the 1920s, the former owner of Clos de la Roilette went ballistic. Until that point, this domain was considered within Moulin-a-Vent (the estate's treeline is literally the border of the two appellations) and the owner was loathe to lose this classification, opting to bottle his wines without any appellation designation rather than call them Fleurie. Through the following generations the estate fell into disrepair until it was bought and replanted in 1967 by Fernand Coudert.
Today the estate bottles Gamay
from 12 hectares of Fleurie's best parcels as well as a hectare in Brouilly. Since 1984, Fernand's son, Alain Coudert, has been the winemaker at Clos de le Roilette, producing some of the most concentrated and weighty wines of Fleurie, with sappy red and black fruits, complex soil tones, and the ability to age and improve in bottle for up to a decade. Alain doesn't subscribe to any winemaking dogma, and takes a balanced approach in the vineyard and cellar, adjusting his techniques as dictated by vineyard and vintage. Some of these wines are a bit hard to place - in a good way. The clay and manganese terroir gives these wines characteristics of both Moulin-a-Vent and Fleurie, and with their often Pinot Noir-like
aromas and savory notes, these wines carry suggestions of both the Cote d' Or and the Rhone
. The dense, rich Cuvée Tardive, drawn from 80+ year old vines, is highly age-worthy and particularly worth seeking out.
Made from the Gamay grape, the red wines of Beaujolais are mostly exuberantly fruity and brisk wines that are often served lightly chilled for added refreshment. There is also a small amount of white Beaujolais, made from Chardonnay, but little of this is exported to the U.S. Today, the overwhelming majority of Beaujolais production is controlled by negociants, of whom Georges Duboeuf is the undisputed king.
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