How Good is Bouchard Ainé Beaune 1er Cru Les Marconnets Chardonnay?
Wine Review of 2014 Bouchard Ainé et Fils Beaune Premier Cru ‘les Marconnets’ Chardonnay, Burgundy, France
The “Les Marconnets” vineyard is a Premier Cru site of the Beaune appellation, that spreads over 9.39 hectares (23 acres) producing both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
The Cuvée Signature range by famous Burgundy producer Bouchard Ainé et Fils is a selection of reputed single vineyards Villages, Premier and Grand Crus from Côte de Nuits and Côte de Beaune. They are produced in limited quantities.
This Burgundy Chardonnay comes in a bright lemon-yellow color of medium intensity but with plenty of gold hues making it look shiny and appealing.
The nose is relatively restrained, dominated by aromas of sourdough and honey, slightly waxy with subtle notes of sweet spices. Hints of caramel and brioche, complemented by touches of fresh pineapple and fruity apple. The whole is not so telling as far as the aromatic profile is concerned.
The palate though, tells a completely different story.
The wine explodes and develops on the palate into a myriad of powerful and concentrated flavors.
As soon as you put the wine in your mouth, you are struck by a vibrant and lively acidity, on a dry mineral texture, yet with just the right amount of an oily texture to for it to be balanced and feel opulent-enough, in an overall sensation of freshness.
The real opulence though, comes from the sheer complexity packed into this Chardonnay!
The honey and apple flavors burst with vivacity at first, complemented with subtle buttery tones, like a delicate apple crumble that would be scented with acacia honey. From the mid-palate on, the wine develops in amplitude with savory sour dough flavors and a wealth of sweet spices, nutmeg and clove, touches of white pepper and pungent cardamom.
A long and layered finish, to the point that it is warming like it was higher in alcohol than it actually is (13% abv., which I guess is quite high for a Burgundy Chard!). More importantly the wine ends the tasting experience in with delightful and comforting, fruity and buttery impression.
A vibrant, round, and complete Burgundy Chardonnay, filled with an acidic tension carried along the tasting by fresh notes of lemon and fruity apple. The most surprising and outstanding feature though, is the opulent and powerful concentration in well-integrated oak flavors perfectly married to the pungency of the fruit characters, resulting am stunning and layered spicy experience.
Pungency and power, are both delivered with a relative elegance and restrained control, so typical of fine white wines from Burgundy.