2018 Château de Grand Pré Fleurie 'Cuvée Spaciale'
Region: Beaujolais < Burgundy <France
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic (ECOCERT) with biodynamic practices; granite-sand soils; 70+ year-old-vines; after fermenting in the ‘Sputnik’ vessel, the wine is gently transferred into large 600-liter neutral oak barrels (hogsheads) for 7 months; bottled unfiltered with no added sulfites;12.5% ABV
Winemaker: Romain ZordanIn 1972, Louis and Renée Bertrand purchased the 18th century estate of Château de Grand Pré and its respective vineyards. When their children took over, a major push towards organic and biodynamic farming began. Then Louis and Renée’s grandson, Romain, returned to Beaujolais after working at wineries around the world, and helped the estate become certified organic through ECOCERT in 2009. Romain then built upon this eco-friendly mindset by implementing natural practices in the winery (little-to-no sulfite additions, natural yeasts, neutral barrels).
Grapes for this cuveé are sourced from ancient vines on some of Beaujolais’ highest elevations in the Cru village of Fleurie. As always with this estate, yields are half of Grand Cru Burgundy (especially important in a region that has some of the world's highest vine densities), and a long, cool carbonic maceration for 30 days occurs in a spherical concrete vessel known as ‘Sputnik” (hence the spaceman on the label). This is an incredibly special wine, with the bright and lifted red-fruited juiciness of Fleurie and a depth and gravitas not usually found in Beaujolais at this price point. Again, it would not hurt to open the bottle or decant for 30 minutes to let it settle and fully express itself before drinking – and don’t forget the slight chill, which we think Gamay always wants. Drink now or let it age a year or two – it’ll only get better with time.