One of my favorite producers of Burgundy is Domaine Antonin Guyon, a family-owned winery started by Antonin Guyon in the 1960’s. The estate in the Cöte d’Or is controlled and operated today by Antonin’s sons Dominique and Michel. Last year at a tasting in NYC, I met Hombeline Guyon, the daughter of Dominique, who along with him manages the day to day operations of the winery. Hombeline said if I was in Burgundy I should visit the estate.
Soon after the tasting Michele and I made plans to stay in Beaune for a week. The Guyon estate is only a short taxi ride from Beaune so we contacted Hombeline and made an appointment to visit the winery.
Hombeline said that 2015 was not only a great vintage but a remarkable one in Burgundy.
Hombeline said that they have 47 hectares of vines producing wines from 25 different appellations. The domaine owns vines around the hill of Corton. The southern limits are in Gevrey, Meursault in the south, the Cötes Nuits in the west and the Chorey-lès-Beaune in the east.
She said that all the grapes are picked by hand from the first selection (triage) of the vines. Some of the pickers are regulars and have been coming for 25 years. They want to get the grapes to the vat-house within 30 minutes of picking.
At the curerie there is second triage on the sorting table. Then the red gapes are completely destemmed and placed into large, temperature controlled, open-top wooden fermentation tanks. There is about one week cold (10-12C) maceration, one week at a maximum of 30C and one week of post–fermentation maceration. Twice daily pigeoge takes place (in the purest Burgundy tradition) before gravity sends the wine to barrels in the cellar below. 50% of new oak is used for the grand crus and less for the other reds. She made the point that they were moving away from new oak for all their wines.
For the whites, the grapes are whole pressed with a relativity light touch of the pneumatic press, the juice then settles and is racked in the barrels. The wine remains on the lees for as long as possible with a weekly batonnage. The wine is bottled after 12 months, with the exception of the Grands Crus Charlemagne and Corton Clos du Roy, which stay in barrel for about 18 months.
Gevery-Chambertin “La Justice” 100% Pinot Noir the soil clay and limestone. Long fermentation for 20 days takes place. Aging in oak barrels, 30% new, and estate bottled after 18 months. This is a round and well balanced wine, rich and complex with hints of cherry.
Savigny lès Beaune “Les Goudelettes” 100% Pinot Noir. The soil is clay and limestone. Aging in oak barrels, 15% new and estate bottling after 15 months. This is a well balanced elegant wine with hints of red fruit. This wine can last for another 8 to 10 years.
Chambolle – Musigny “ Les Cras” 100% Pinot Noir the soil is clay and limestone. There is a long fermentation of 20 days. The wine is aged in oak barrels, 30% new and estate bottled after 16 months. The wine has hints of violets and red cherries with a silky texture. It has a very long finish and a very pleasing aftertaste.
Meursault Charmes 1er Cru “La Charmes Dessus” 100% Chardonnay. The soil is white mais. The wine is aged in oak barrels 30% new and estate bottled after 15 months. This is a rich tasting wine with notes of honey. Hombeline said the wine can last for a least another 10 years.
After the tasting she offered me one of the open bottles to take back to the hotel to drink. I picked the Savigny-lès-Beaune and we enjoyed it with pate in the hotel.
Last month the Wine Media Guild held a Burgundy tasting and I was able to taste the Savigny-lès-Beaune again. It was drinking even better than I remembered and it is a bargain at about $40.