2019 Domaine Voillot, Volnay
Being in the wine trade means never admitting to having a favourite producer, but if truth be told, Domaine Joseph Voillot is mine, so we offer Voillot's 2019s with great pleasure.
I first visited here in the late 1990s to taste the '96 vintage. Jean-Pierre Charlot had recently taken over from his father-in-law, Joseph Voillot. Jean-Pierre is well-loved in the region, a gruff but genial bear of man whose stoutness and no-nonsense approach always seems at odds with the elegance of his wines. In the last few years he has been training his nephew, Etienne Chaix, to takeover and in the last couple of vintages Etienne seems to have really found his stride.
The winery and cellar is in the middle of Volnay, a few metres from two great bastions of the village, the church and Le Cellier Volnaysien, one of the most traditional Burgundian restaurants on the Côte d'Or.
The domaine's 9 hectares of vines are mostly in Volnay and in neighbouring Pommard and are notably old, with even the village Volnay boasting an average vine age of 50 years.
These old vines tend to give low yields even in the best years. The photo above shows almost the entire length of the tiny cellar, with another row of barrels to the right. In 2019, rain and cold weather at flowering limited the size of the crop (as seen across the region). The summer heat and lack of rainfall further reduced the size of the harvest, down about a third on 2018.
They use no whole bunches at Voillot and the winemaking is very traditional, with daily pigeages and remontages at the start of the fermentation. The style of winemaking here inherently leads to elegant wines, but in 2019 there is also masses of fruit concentration, backed up by fine, ripe tannins which will sustain the wines for a very long time.
This was another tasting from miniature cask samples sent by courier which transported us immediately, to the little square in front of the Church and to the cellars at Voillot. It is just remarkable how much identity these wines can convey.
With such a fine, ripe and balanced vintage on offer, there has never been a better time to buy these classic reds from Voillot.
Offered en primeur, landing Autumn 2021.
Prices are ex-VAT per case of 12 bottles, unless otherwise advised. DP = duty-paid ex-London. IB = under bond ex-London.
|Red||2019||Joseph Voillot - Pommard Les Rugiens 1er Cru||75cl||£375 per case of 6||IB|
From Limestone and marl, just 0.25ha of vines planted in 1959. Rounded and rich... Read more
From Limestone and marl, just 0.25ha of vines planted in 1959. Rounded and rich, great texture, more indulgent than Les Epenots and with less overt mineral character at this stage, this will be all about silky texture on the palate as the tannins meld. RKL Close
|Red||2019||Joseph Voillot - Volnay Les Champans 1er Cru||75cl||£275 per case of 6||IB|
From vines planted in 1934, 1971, 1985. Les Chgampans is a limestone terroir wh... Read more
From vines planted in 1934, 1971, 1985. Les Chgampans is a limestone terroir which imparts a chalky character to the tannins, fresh acidity and an underlying minerality. This is really electric on the palate, with lots of freshness but also great depth to the ripe red fruits. Despite the terroir this is the most open and approachable Champans I have tried, and yet there still seems to be lots of complex tannic structure in the background which will develop over 5-7 years. RKL Close
|Red||2019||Joseph Voillot - Volnay Vieilles Vignes||75cl||£155 per case of 6||IB|
The village Volnay is from old vines, averaging 50 years of age. These are spr... Read more
The village Volnay is from old vines, averaging 50 years of age. These are spread across several parcels totalling under 2 hectares. with an average age of 50 years. Delicate red fruits and floral notes (rose petal) but with more luxurious fruit than we are used to here. This does an amazing tight rope walk between elegance and ripeness, remarkable how it is still so elegant even with all this fruit. RKL Close