2016 Vieilles Vignes Domaine Stéphane Magnien
|Sub-district||Côte de Nuits|
Vines planted before phyloxera from 1902/03. Just 15-20% are the original. But these are epic and still dominate the vineyard. There is something more rooty here. Beetroot and earthier than much already tasted. But this is fine and elegant. Intense, deep rooted. Lovely minerality courses through the dark brambling, fresh damson juice. Perky blue feel. Chewy subtle grip and lovely acidity. Very joyous and sophisticated village wine. L&S (Oct 2017)
*Case price discount: Mix any 12 bottles (or 9l equivalent) of wine or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits, Sweet Wine or Fortified to get the 'case price' for each bottle.
Domaine Stéphane Magnien
Stéphane's is a small domaine, a mere 4.5 hectares, with one full hectare of that in regional wine - Passetoutgrains and Bourgogne - but it is blessed with two Grands Crus and also a long history of not messing with nature. No pesticides have ever been used on this land, and the plants are nearly all the old 'Pinot tordu' - twisted Pinot with its gnarly stems which are less vigorous than the modern clones and said by many to make wines with more finesse.
Stéphane chaptalizes only to extend fermentations - these are wines which his father Jean-Paul used to describe as 'sage en alcool' - from 12 to 13% - the old vines do not make much alcohol. Wood use is also discreet, even though Stéphane has increased the proportion, he does not exceed 50% new wood on the Grands Crus, 25% on the Premiers Crus and on the village appellations, 15% new wood for one year only, then all into older barrels.
Stéphane says that he aims to make wines with more richness than his father's, 'but not black angular wines which have less relief. Wines which leave your mouth clean and clear, refreshed and revived and, above all, wanting another glass'. He destems 100%, gives the grapes a six-day maceration, then a classical fermentation with just two pigeages, and a little remontage (pumping over) at the end.
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