The Meursault explorer


Something is going on in the secrecy of the cellars of Meursault. Perhaps it’s the effect of the Golden Triangle, of the good vibrations, or else waves of telluric energy – who knows? Whatever the case, Nicolas Burnez, the winemaker at Ropiteau Frères, reputed for his discretion, has revealed to us the results of some trials which say a lot about his constant quest for the Grail, the excellence of these great white Burgundy wines. This perpetual thirst for knowledge has driven him on for more than a decade in the Meursault winery, where he does much more than just make wines – he wants to penetrate their mystery, pushing them to their limits to get the very best out of them. Two secrets, two paths for reflection The first involves making the juice more dynamic. In biodynamics, energy is given to the preparations by dynamizing them, in other words, mixing them according to a special vortex movement, as is done at the Domaine de la Vougeraie, to make their properties more effective. Nicolas started down this path in 2015 with some initial trials, which were continued in 2016 on a larger scale. He has honed his equipment, with a view to the majority of production becoming biodynamic by 2018. The goal, which the more down-to-earth might see as esoteric, is to inject a higher degree of vibration into these divine nectars, so their living personalities are expressed with yet more intensity. How can one not adhere to this lofty objective of living, vibrant wine? We don’t know any more the processes at work. We can just taste and trust our senses. The second trial is more accessible for common mortals, and involves barrels. For many years, we have tested oaks of various provenance, but it is more unusual to test different species of wood. Alongside the noble oak, Nicolas has undertaken trials to see what other woods might bring, staring with French acacia. This widespread wood has been tested for the past two vintages on Chablis wines, the stylistic opposite of Meursault. It involves selecting particular batches of grapes according to the personality of the vintage for this specific wood. One may also take into account cutting the wood according to the biodynamic calendar as part of this study, these three parameters allowing a full evaluation of the difference this unusual ageing brings. One to watch...

june 2017           vinification           Burgundy         biodynamics

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