Vines of Jean-Claude Rateau

Affordable Organic Burgundies from Jane et Sylvain, Champs de l'Abbaye and Jean-Claude Rateau - Featuring the Superb 2014s!

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It's fascinating to read about and walk through the famous parcels in the Côte d'Or, learning about the subtle differences of slope, exposure, altitude, subsoil and topsoil that differentiate the great terroirs of Burgundy. It's not so interesting to note that many of these vineyards, largely created by the natural composts of the monks, are now somewhat barren and lifeless, having been stripped of living organisms by decades of herbicides, pesticides and systemic fungicides. Happily the tide is turning in Burgundy towards organic and biodynamic farming and there are many famous (and rather expensive) examples of this return to a more sane and healthy agriculture. And where, other than Burgundy, could this be more important - where the traditional tastevin revealed the subtle differences of terroir in the light and lovely wines, rather than the modern tasting glass showing gobs of fruit? We have nothing against fruit of course, and happily the three estates featured today have made beautiful wines in the last few years, especially in the lovely 2014 vintage, which show gorgeous fruit in an old fashioned style, low levels of alcohol, bright acidity and wonderful expression of terroir.

Jean-Claude Rateau was the first biodynamic grower in Burgundy, certified in 1979. He has always been "under the radar" and we are very happy to have his lovely wines at Chambers Street. His simple Bourgogne Rouge and Hautes-Côtes-de-Beaune wines are especially delicious in 2014 and the Prévoles and Réversées and drinking beautifully. Just arrived from our organic friends Jane et Sylvain in Gevrey are the 2014 Passetoutgrain and Bourgogne Rouge and the 2013 Cotes de Nuits-Villages (from the Queue de Hareng in Brochon). These are beautiful everyday Burgundies, particularly the Bourgogne Rouge which shows wonderful purity of fruit  and perfect balance. Alain and Isabelle Hasard at Champs de l'Abbaye in the Côte Chalonnaise have been farming with organic and biodynamic methods since 1999. (See the excellent article in www.Wineterroirs.com from 2009) The 2014 Mercurey "Brigadières" and the 2014 Bourgogne Rouge show vibrant fruit, bright acidity and great expression of the clay/limestone soils, and the two Crémant de Bourgognes are outstanding vaues that will sell out quickly.

Champs de L'Abbaye, Cote Chalonnaise

So, no big names and no Grand Crus (although the Jane et Sylvain "Fontenys" is only ten feet from Ruchottes) just lots of delcious Pinot Noir from living soils, from vignerons determined to farm properly and truly express their terroirs!

No Longer Available

Rateau 2011 Beaune 1er Cru Les Reversees

From young and old vines on "brown" limestone with clay topsoil, in biodynamic agriculture. 21 day fermentation with manual pigeage, aged 18 months in old barriques. The wine is quite rich in 2011 showing deep aromas of blackberry liqueur, violets, strawberry and earth with hints of citrus, plum and spice. The palate is round and ripe with firm acidity and deep black fruits with beach plum and earth with a lovely long finish. While this can be enjoyed young it will be best after 5 to 7 years of aging. This is a delicious Beaune 1er Cru, a great value and highly recommended.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $34.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Rateau 2013 Beaune Les Prevoles

From the bottom of the slope with deeper soils. The 2013 Les Prévolles shows a prettier side of Beaune. There are bright fine aromas of wild strawberry, raspberry, and violets with notes of earth beneath. The palate is somewhat light but shows tart cherry, raspberry syrup, and stone framed by fine-grained tannins. This is quite elegant with good persistence on the finish. Evolves over many hours after opening. Serve cool with grilled chicken this summer or age for 3-5 years and enjoy with roasted chicken or a cheese course. John McIlwain

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $28.99

  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Rateau 2014 Hautes Cotes de Beaune Rouge

From a small parcel of 50 year-old vines in AOC Hautes Côtes de Beaune, certified biodynamic, "lyre ouverte" pruning. Lovely light garnet color; subtle, delicate aromas of red fruits and flowers - quite complex and pretty - raspberry, tart cherry and blackberry. the palate is light and lovely with earthy red fruits, citrus and herbal flavors finishing with bright acidity and saline minerals. This is a subtle and refreshing glass of Burgundy - enjoy now served cool or wait 5 to 8 years for a mature experience.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $21.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Rateau 2014 Bourgogne Rouge

The arrival of new wines from Jean Claude Rateau is always a cause for celebration. Rateau was one of the pioneers of biodynamic viticulture in France and was the first biodynamic vigneron in Burgundy dating to 1979. The mid-weight 2014 Bourgogne rouge, sourced from vines in Pommard, has a limpid ruby robe and cool-toned aromatics. The nose offers violets, wild strawberry, pomegranate, and spice. The palate is racy, brisk, and earthy with a tension between red fruit and a fine cool minerality. A touch reticent at first, with a few hours open the fruit becomes more prominent. Good now with decanting, this will gain from time in the cellar. John McIlwain

 

 

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Rateau 2012 Beaune 1er Cru Les Coucherias Blanc

Beaune 1er Cru "Les Coucherias" is high on the slope on the site of an old quarry and much of the sub-soil is limestone tailings, permitting root penetration and drainage, with a topsoil of mixed clay and limestone "marnes blanches." In biodynamic agriculture since 1979, the vineyard is a south-facing semi-circle—a very warm spot giving a full, ripe wine. The 2012 has lovely aromas of ripe pear and apple, with lemon-oil, melon and floral notes. The palate is quite round and ripe with pear, quince, lemon confit and honey backed with chalky minerals and good acidity. This is quite delicious now and until 2025.

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $39.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Rateau 2014 Cote de Beaune La Grande Chatelaine

About a kilometer or two northwest of the Beaune 1er Crus, La Grande Chatelain is a cooler site with soils comprised of clay over limestone. The 2014 Clos de la Grande Chatelain has fresh cool-toned aromatics of white flowers,  nectarine, rainwater,  and pear skin. The medium-bodied palate is a little warmer toned  offering flavors of nectarine, white peach, and crushed herb with a fairly savory finish.  The ripeness of the vintage makes this a little more giving than one would typically expect for the cooler high-altitude climat. This is generous and makes for a lovely quaffer, as well as a beautiful partner with shellfish or milder cheeses. John McIlwain

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $26.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Rateau 2014 Hautes Cotes de Beaune Blanc

This is a racy and very mineral glass of white Burgundy showing aromas of stone, citrus, anise and pear liqueur. The palate is bone-dry with stone and citrus flavors, white fruits and herbal notes that continue on the long and scintillating finish. Serve with shellfish, sole, cod and mild goat cheeses. This will certainly age well and should be quite interesting in 5 to 8 years.

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Jane et Sylvain 2013 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Fontenys

Jane et Sylvain have a superb, tiny parcel of Gevrey 1er Cru "Fontenys", high up in the southwest, separated from Grand Cru Ruchottes by a dirt track. They are certified organic and age the wine in old barriques. The 2013 is a bit coiled upon opening, but with an hour or so of air opens to reveal cherry and red berry fruit, wet bark, savory earth, and spice notes on the nose. The palate has good density offering sappy cherry fruit, lively acids, and dark-toned minerality with firm but ripe tannins and a very long, savory finish. This is a classy Gevrey which will need 5-8 years to come together but should drink beautifully for another dozen years after that. John McIlwain    In January of 2014, I tasted the 2002 Gevrey 1er Cru Fontenys in the cellar with Jane and Sylvain.Their eldest son was born in 2002, so they saved a bunch for him, but were generous enough to share one with my father and me. It was transcendental - what I refer to as my "religious experience" with red Burgundy, and possibly one of the most memorable wines I've ever tasted. Flowers, stones, dried fruit, the subtle touch of tannin... truly a blissful experience. Jane says the wine has "la finesse du Ruchottes," referring to the Grand Cru vineyard that is literally feet away from the edge of their vines in the Premier Cru Fonteny.  Unfortunately we don't have any of the 2002 at Chambers, but the 2013 is a great purchase for the cellar - patience will reward you if you can wait for it to develop. Eben Lillie  

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $54.99

  • Organic

Jane et Sylvain 2013 Côte de Nuits Villages

The vines are in the lieu-dit "Queue de Hareng" below an old quarry at the top of the slope in Brochon, next to Fixin 1er Cru "la Perrière," on red/brown soils of mountain silt and limestone pebbles over the limestone bedrock. Always giving an earthy and mineral-infused wine, the 2013 is particularly chalky and dense. The wine shows slight reduction then deep blackberry/raspberry liqueur with hints of coffee, earth and violets. The palate shows vivid red and black fruits combining with earth and mineral flavors that continue in the long finish. Please decant if drinking now or hold three to five years then drink till 2026+. This is a delicious Burgundy and very expressive of this unique vineyard site!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $22.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Jane et Sylvain 2014 Bourgogne Rouge (Arrives 11/7)

Jane et Sylvain: A refreshingly unpretentious name for a small organic estate in Gevrey-Chambertin. Their Bourgogne Rouge is from young vines in a parcel that has never been chemically treated and always tended organically. The 2014 is simply delicious! The bright aromas are of raspberry and wild strawberry with violet and spice; the palate shows deep earthy berry fruit, quite ripe but balanced with very firm acidity. The finish is long and refreshing with citrusy red currant and raspberry. Drink this beautiful wine over the next five to eight years. Highly recommended!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $18.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Jane et Sylvain 2014 Bourgogne Passetoutgrain

Jane and Sylvain have done it again! Another beautiful Passetoutgrain from 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Gamay, grown near Gevrey-Chambertin, organically farmed and quite delicious! This young wine needs some time open or decanting, then shows lovely strawberry and blackberry aromas with hints of earth, violets, spice and citrus. The palate shows chalky berry fruit with earth, citrus and anise in a refreshing light to medium-bodied frame, with 12% alcohol. Serve quite cool with just about anything from fish to steak. Lovely juice and a great value!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $14.99

  • Organic

Champs de l'Abbaye 2014 Mercurey La Brigadière

From a 1/2 hectare parcel of 35 to 40 year-old Pinot Noir vines on poor chalky soil with clay/limestone below, certified organic since 1999 and with biodynamic methods. Yields of 20 hl/ha, elevage in barrique, 50% new. The great farming of Isabelle and Alain Hasard gives wines of great density and character and the 2014 Mercurey "Brigadiere" is a great example. A bit of toasty oak frames deep strawberry and ripe cherry aromas with violet, blood orange and spice. The palate is supple and bright with lush, earthy blackberry and strawberry fruit that lingers in the long finish framed in saline minerals and good acidity. At 12% alcohol the wine combines ripeness and density but retains a bright refreshing character. Enjoy now served cool with roast chicken and lighter beef and pork dishes. Best perhaps 2018 to 2025 - lovely wine!

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $23.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Champs de l'Abbaye 2014 Bourgogne Pinot Noir

Warning! Delicious Burgundy for under $20 that disappears quickly when poured in glass... From 10 to 50 year-old vines grown on limestone soils (Middle Jurassic!) in the commune of Aluze, Cotes Chalonnaise, certified organic since 1999. Needs a little air, then shows lovely aromas of black raspberry, tart cherry, citrus, violet and spice. Supple blackberry and cherry fruit on the palate balanced by bright acidity with earth, citrus and mineral flavors that linger in the finish. "Gouleyant" as the French would say, just plain yummy in English.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $17.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Champs de l'Abbaye 2011 Crémant de Bourgogne Brut Rosé

A lovely rosé of Pinot Noir showing creamy strawberry and black cherry aromas. Elegant mousse with very earthy red fruits on the palate, long and very vinous. This is a quite serious sparkling rosé and a great value!

  • Out of Stock
  • rosé
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $16.99

  • Organic

Champs de l'Abbaye 2012 Crémant de Bourgogne Brut Nature

From organic Chardonnay grapes grown in the Côte Chalonnaise near Mercurey. This is a lovely Crémant that shows aromas of brioche, white fruits, lemon zest and lime-flower. The palate is bone dry with pronounced mineral flavors and firm acidity framing pear, citrus and spice, with nice density and length. This is really an excellent Champagne-alternative at a great price!

  • Out of Stock
  • white sparkling
  • 0 in stock
  • no discount
  • $17.99

  • Organic