Very pure with Chablis-like stoniness and subtle aromas of baked apple and spices combine into a refined and delicate nose.
We’ve been collecting white Burgundy since the early 1980s, but in three decades we’ve never seen a vintage quite like 2014. Stephen Tanzer, whose knowledge of the producers, villages, and vineyards of Burgundy is unparalleled, declared: “For lovers of classic white Burgundies, 2014 is clearly a vintage to buy.” Wine Spectator came in with a whopping 93-96 rating and raved that it was potentially the GREATEST vintage since the epic 1985 harvest.
In Côte de Beaune, the 2014 vintage gave birth to Chardonnays of deep concentration and impeccable balance, the best of which will age effortlessly well into the 2030s. Chablis turned out wines that were pitch-perfect with their wet-stone minerality and racy, lemon zest flavors.
But if we were to pick one wine route where 2014 shined the brightest, the Mâconnais would be at the top of our list. Benefiting from the area’s complex argilo-calcaire soils, the top cellars — Corsin, Terres de Chatenay, Cordier, and Bonhomme — turned out some of their greatest white Burgundies in decades. And to the delight of bargain-hunters, producers like the small, 20-acre and family-run Domaine du Château de Pierreclos, perched on east-facing slopes of clay-limestone soil located between La Roche of Solutré and the historic Abbaye de Cluny, released some of the best values in the whole region.
Why is the 2014 white Burgundy vintage perhaps the highest-rated harvest since Michael Jackson created the Moonwalk?
Despite a brutal hailstorm that nearly decimated Meursault and Pommard in late June, the Mâconnais was largely spared. July was mixed, riding the seesaw between hot sunshine and chilly, cloudy days. August was particularly cool, with daytime highs barely sneaking into the 70s, and by the end of the month the vines were behind schedule.
The vintage, the vignerons all agreed, would be made or broken in the first weeks of September. And as luck would have it, the morning of September 1st was glorious. Daytime highs crept back into the 80s under gorgeous blue skies, conditions that would last for the better part of two weeks. Sugars spiked as acids remained firm. Quality was pristine.
Anne-Françoise and Jean-Marie Pidault are the keepers of the 14th century château that sits on certified organic vineyards. When they decided to harvest on September 10th, yields were down nearly 30% from the norm, making for a limited production of one of the most stunning under-$20 white Burgundies you’ll ever sip and swirl.
The Château de Pierreclos is a historic château located between the Cluny Abbey and the famed Rock of Solutré. Set among the vineyards on a rocky limestone outcropping, the château appears in texts from 1282, when the lord promised his château to the Duke of Burgundy. A stronghold that has survived more than a few wars, the château sits on 20 acres of vines with an average age of 30 years, half planted to Chardonnay and half to Pinot Noir. Vines are densely planted, creating competition and leading to naturally low yields and superb concentration. The deep, limestone-rich soil is certified organic and produces wines that are rich and racy on the attack, braced by top-pedigree minerality.
The 2014 Domaine du Château de Pierreclos Mâcon-Pierreclos is bright, light yellow. Very pure with Chablis-like stoniness and subtle aromas of baked apple and spices combine into a refined and delicate nose. Round and fleshy on entry but conveying freshness and fine-grained texture with an impression of weightlessness. Slow-building, saline, and charming finish. Drink now-2022.
If you’re a fan of rich, juicy, HIGHLY mineral Chardonnay, the 2014 vintage is just what the doctor ordered. And if you’re constantly on the search for truly inspired, under-$20 white Burgundy, the 2014 Domaine du Château de Pierreclos Mâcon-Pierreclos is about as good as it gets. Just $19 today, only from WineAccess. 540 bottles. CASE BUY.
Just as good as the 2014. Nice pick from W.A.
A superb example of Macon white
Has a vibrancy more like a quality Chablis but with the fleshiness of a well-crafted Macon. The prestige bottlings, like this, from the best Macon houses consistently offer the best value in world-class chardonnay. I was tempted to grade this higher...
Very nice, reasonably priced and serviceable Chard. Excellent value!
Refreshing flavor that goes well as an apero or w/the white meats.
Fabulously Fresh and Delightful
Clean and balanced.
Needed a few weeks to start to show off. Drinking very nicely now.
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