Volnay, Clos des Chênes is a 15.41-hectare Premier Cru climat in Volnay. Clos des Chênes is situated in the southern end of Volnay, above Route Nationale 73 at the border with Monthélie. The name attests to the onetime presence of an ancient oak forest on the vineyard site. At one time the vineyard belonged to the Knights Templar, but was later inherited by the Brotherhood of the Holy Sacrament. Clos des Chênes faces southeast from an altitude of between 280 and 320 meters, with soil composed of limestone marl and clay-limestone scree. Along with Les Caillerets, Les Taillepieds, Clos du Château des Ducs, and Les Santenots-du-Milieu, Clos des Chênes is ranked among the best in the appellation. Excellent Clos des Chênes is produced by Domaine des Comtes Lafon and Domaine Michel Lafarge.
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Posted in Appellations, Burgundy, Vineyards, Wine, tagged Clos des Chênes, Clos du Château des Ducs, Domaine des Comtes Lafon, Domaine Michel Lafarge, Dominique Lafon, Les Caillerets, Les Santenots-du-Milieu, Les Taillepieds, Volnay on April 7, 2010 | Leave a Comment »
Volnay, Santenots-du-Milieu is a 22.36-hectare Premier Cru climat situated within the appellation Santenots. Santenots is physically located within the commune of Meursault (although adjacent to Volnay), but is by law entitled to use the appellation Volnay, Santenots. Thus, although the vineyards are actually in Meursault, the wines are entitled to be called Volnay. The reason for this apparent anomaly is that the red clay soil in Santenots has long been viewed as better suited for Pinot Noir than Chardonnay, and the appellation Volnay is much better known for red Burgundy than is Meursault.
The best section of Santenots is Santenots-du-Milieu, having been classified by Dr. Lavalle as tête de cuvée. At an elevation of 240-280 meters, Santenots-du-Milieu faces southeast on soil shallow, red, heavy clay soil, above a subsoil of Bathonian limestone. The wines are deep in colour, rich and sturdy, with deep tannins , and, if somewhat lacking in the elegance of characteristic of the best Volnay, is lush and supple.
Excellent examples of Santenots-du-Milieu are made by Domaine Mikulski and Domaine des Comtes Lafon. In fact, the parcels of these two winemakers formed a single vineyard in the first part of the twentieth century until it was split and sold off to the grandfathers of Franςois Mikulski and Dominique Lafon.
Meursault, Clos de la Barre is a village-level 2.12-hectare monopole of the Domaine des Comtes Lafon in Meursault. The lieu-dit Clos de la Barre is comprised of a vineyard entirely enclosed within the walls of the Domaine, where the family home is situated, at the northern edge of the town of Meursault. The gently-sloping and east-facing vineyard is planted in three parcels, the first (.8 hectare) planted in 1950, the second (.8 hectare) in 1975, and the third (.5 hectare) replanted in 2004. The soil is an admixture of clay and marl over a hard limestone base. The Chardonnay-based wines of Clos de la Barre rich with pronounced minerality and a crisp finish.
Meursault, Désirée is a village-level .45-hectare monopole of the Domaine des Comtes Lafon in Meursault. Desirée is actually situated in Les Plures, a Premier Cru climat situated at the northern part of Meursault, and could, accordingly, be bottled as Meursault, Les Plures, Premier Cru. Nevertheless, Dominique Lafon has chosen to label the wine simply as “Desirée” (an old cadastral name) both out of a sense of tradition and because he does not think that the wines warrant Premier Cru designation. East facing, Les Plures is rich in red clay, not very deep, and well-suited to the Pinot Noir which produces the Volnay Santenots which predominates in the vineyard. Lafon plants Desirée entirely with Chardonnay, however, and crafts an atypical Meursault that is seductive, slightly spicy, and rather exotic.
Meursault, Les Gouttes d’Or is a 5.33-hectare Premier Cru climat of Meursault, situated in the central part of the commune, south of the town and north of Les Bouchères and Les Poruzots. The name, “drops of gold,” was perhaps coined by some proto-marketing guru. In fact, the wine has been renowned at least since the time of Thomas Jefferson, who preferred Gouttes d’Or to all other white Burgundies, save Le Montrachet itself. East facing on a slope, at an altitude varying between 240 and 260 meters, the soil is composed of heavy clay over a limestone base. Gouttes d’Or resembles Les Charmes in weight and texture, but is a little firmer and exhibits fuller structure.