Chateau des Rontets
Perched high atop the Mâconnais village of Fuissé, Chateau des Rontets is a rarity among Burgundian domaines in that virtually all of their 15 acres are one walled-in vineyard, the magnificent Clos Varambon. The vineyard and modest chateau have been in the family of Claire Gazeau since 1850. Claire and her husband Fabio (who is Italian and originally from Milan) took over the estate in the late 90s and now live on the property with their children.
They are blessed with several parcels of very old vines, with several sections of the clos planted between 1910-1920. They produce three different cuvées of Pouilly-Fuissé each vintage – one from just the oldest vines, another from several different parcels planted from 1945-1975, and the third from a single parcel just outside the walls. Also outside of the clos and just down the road, they own 1.22 acres in Saint-Amour, with Gamay vines planted 1970. Saint-Amour is one of the most elegant of the prestigious Crus of Beaujolais.
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2009 Pouilly-Fuissé, Clos Varambon $32 >>
This is ripe to the point of exhibiting menthol and exotic fruit aromas that introduce very rich yet fresh and vibrant medium-bodied flavors that possess fine volume and concentration, all wrapped in an attractively dry finish. This is unusually dry for the vintage and finishes quite clean in the best sense. 89 Pts. 2013+
2009 Pouilly-Fuissé, Pierrefolle $36 >>
(from heavily granite-infused soil). This is quite similar to the Varambon aromatically as there is a distinct exoticism to the largely yellow orchard fruit aromas that are in keeping with the equally ripe and rich middle weight flavors that possess fine precision on the tension-filled and textured finish. This balanced and impressively persistent effort is also relatively dry and about the only nit is a hint of backend warmth though as long as the proper serving temperature is maintained, it’s almost invisible. 91/2013+
2009 Pouilly-Fuissé, les Birbettes $44 >>
(from 80+ year old vines). A more expressive as well as a more overtly exotic nose merges seamlessly into exceptionally rich, concentrated and opulent flavors awash in dry extract that renders the supporting acidity almost invisible yet there is excellent vibrancy to the mineral-inflected finish. This is a dramatic wine and the amount of extract is such that the massively long finish is almost chewy. I would be inclined to drink this after only a few years of cellar time as this is such a big wine that it’s not hard to see it eventually becoming heavy with too much bottle age. (90-93)/2014+