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Burgundy 2020 En Primeur: Domaine J.A. Ferret, Pouilly-Fuissé

We are delighted to begin our Burgundy 2020 En Primeur offers with the rich, beautifully textured Pouilly-Fuissés of Domaine JA Ferreta historic domaine, which pioneered single-vineyard wines in the region, capturing its enormous diversity of terroirs. 

The keywords for Ferret's 2020s are balance and elegance, despite the summer heat and low rainfall which affected the region.  In a great demonstration of why terroir matters in Pouilly-Fuissé, winemaker Audrey Braccini explains that even in nearby Vergisson, the rainfall was significantly lower than in Fuissé itself, where Ferret's 17 hectares of vineyards are located.  The growing season began with good groundwater reserves from the winter, with further well-timed rainfall at the end of July coming just in time to give the perfect conditions for the harvest, which started on 24th August

Burgundy expert Allen Meadows describes Ferret's 2020s as "excellent" and finds a wonderful mixture of power and elegance in them.  This is a big year for both the domaine and for Pouilly-Fuissé as a whole, with a new premier cru classification due to appear on labels when the 2020s are bottled (which at Ferret will be in February 2022); Les Perrières and Les Ménétrières will be both be labelled as premier cru...so this is the first ever opportunity to buy them in their newly ennobled state!

Meadows gives particularly long drinking dates for all three wines, suggesting they need five years or more to reach their best...a great indicator of their potential, though we think they could be enjoyed much sooner, from around 2 years after bottling, and Charles Curtis MW writing for Decanter agrees.  What this does point to though is the wisdom of planning your burgundy drinking well-ahead.  Remarkably, prices for the 2020s are unchanged from 2019, but we are already hearing continual reports of the impact of the tiny 2021 vintage, so expect prices to rise and availability to diminish. 

As we said last year, the richness of Ferret's wines make them a wonderful and affordable alternative to the classics from Chassagne and Meursault Availability of all three wines is limited, so please let us know as soon as possible if you would like to order.  

Ferret also offer their wines in half bottlesmagnums and jeroboams, for a small surcharge, please let us know if this is of interest.

Offered en primeur, stock landing in the UK late autumn 2022.

Audrey Braccini introduces the 2020 vintage:

 

Domaine J.A Ferret, Pouilly-Fuissé

Producer Profile

Domaine J.A Ferret, Pouilly-Fuissé

Domaine J.A. Ferret is in the heart of Fuissé itself, with the Ferret family making wine in the village since the 1760s and owning the domaine since 1840.  After the Second World War Madame Jeanne Ferret took the decision to bottle the wines at the domaine, rather than selling them to negociants, a bold move at the time.  She ran the Ferret for over half a century, well into her eighties, and was joined by her daughter Colette in the 1990s.  In 2008 the family sold the estate to Maison Louis Jadot, but it continues to be run as a separate entity.  New investment and a brilliant new winemaker signal the intention to raise the game, both at Ferret and for the appellation as a whole.  Audrey Braccini is making wines with the kind of mineral complexity usually found in the Côte d'Or, but with an added dimension of Maconnais sunshine lending richness to the wines.  Ferret's 18 hectares of vines are spread across many of the best sites in the village.

When we first visited, Audrey pointed out to us that Pouilly-Fuissé has more diversity of terroirs than any other appellation in Burgundy, but this is not reflected in the way that most of the production is bottled and labelled.  There is a long tradition at Ferret of recognising the importance of specific sites and Madame Ferret’s even created her own unofficial classifications of 'Tetes de Cru' and 'Hors Cru Classe' which corresponded (in her eyes) to premier and grand cru.  From the fresh, mineral style of "Les Perrieres" and "Tournant de Pouilly" (on limestone soils) to the richness of "Clos des Prouges", the wines exhibit their terroirs beautifully.  

After many years of lobbying the authorities and after many complex soil studies, the INAO has authorised a premier cru classification in Pouilly-Fuissés, to appear on labels from the 2020 vintage, with a number of Ferret's crus included.  Pouilly-Fuissés first grand cru may take a little longer...but, if and when it does come, it may well be one of Ferret's.  

WHITE 2020 Domaine J.A. Ferret - Pouilly-Fuissé "Clos de Prouges" Tete de Cru 75cl £170 per case of 6 Domaine J.A. Ferret
Pouilly-Fuissé "Clos de Prouges" Tete de Cru
2020 / / 75cl
£170 per case of 6
IB
Tasting NotesSituated right in the centre of the village of Fuissé, this Clos is just over two "hectares" in size and is planted on a shallow slope that faces east. Although a small parcel of vines was planted in 2003, most of the vineyard dates back to 1956, and is therefore more than 60 years old, making it one of the oldest owned by the domaine. The soil is derived from limestone-rich marls deposited during the upper Bathonian. Fermentations and ageing take place in casks, of which 25% is new and 75% is one to three years old, for 10 months. Ageing is completed in stainless steel tank, on lees, for a further 7 months. The 2020 vintage will be bottled in February 2022.------"Once again moderate wood is present on the nose of ripe white orchard fruit that exhibit background spice and quinine nuances. The rich and relatively full-bodied are quite generous yet not so such as to be blurry or lacking focus on the delineated, energetic and balanced finale that offers just a bit more depth along with sneaky good length. 2026+. 91-93 points." Allen Meadows, Burghound, Issue 84
WHITE 2020 Domaine J.A. Ferret - Pouilly-Fuissé "Les Ménétrières" 1er cru 75cl £225 per case of 6 Domaine J.A. Ferret
Pouilly-Fuissé "Les Ménétrières" 1er cru
2020 / / 75cl
£225 per case of 6
IB
Tasting NotesLes Ménétrières is a vineyard of just 0.8 hectares on the edge of Fuissé, with rich "Dogger Bank" limestone marl deposits running through it, producing the richest of the domaine's wines. Located at the exit of the village of Fuissé, behind the Mont Pouilly in the middle of the slope, this vineyard covers 80 ares and is East oriented. The vineyard has been renewed three times from 1974 to 1999. Fermentation and elevage are handled as for the Clos des Prouges and Les Perrières. The 2020 vintage will be bottled in February 2022.------"This is aromatically similar to the Tournant but with even more spice elements. There is even better volume and overt power to the big-bodied, concentrated and mouth coating flavors that aren’t quite as complex but just as long on the balanced finish. This too is excellent and offers a different expression. 2028+. 91-94 points." Allen Meadows, Burghound, Issue 84------"This site highly esteemed by Mme. Ferret, whose domaine holds 0.80 hectares here. The soil is clay over limestone and marl. The wine is fermented and aged in cask (20% new) and does its second winter in tank before release. The result is fresh, lemony and very fine, with lovely floral notes, a well-integrated cask element and a bright acidity on the palate. Not at all lacking in length, this is delicate, yet firm. A top wine. Drinking Window 2023 - 2033. 95 points." Charles Curtis MW, Decanter
WHITE 2020 Domaine J.A. Ferret - Pouilly-Fuissé "Les Perrieres" 1er cru 75cl £185 per case of 6 Domaine J.A. Ferret
Pouilly-Fuissé "Les Perrieres" 1er cru
2020 / / 75cl
£185 per case of 6
IB
Tasting NotesThe 1.15-hectare Les Perrières vineyard is situated to the south of the amphitheatre, on mid-slope just beneath the parcel of Le Clos. Exposed south-south-east, the slope here is steeper than it is on the Clos. The vineyard was planted in 1972-1974. The soil, which is derived from alluvial deposits, consists of a mix of deep silt and stony clay. The subsoil features streaks of limestone and limestone marls, while the top layers are littered with stones on the surface. Fermentation and elevage are handled as for the Clos des Prouges. The 2020 vintage will be bottled in February 2022.------"Here too the wood treatment is more prominent still with notes of vanilla and toast fighting a bit with the ripe aromas of poached pear and anise. There is impressive size, weight and power to the bigger and equally generously proportioned flavors that brim with both dry extract and minerality before culminating in an elegant but powerful finish. Patience advised here too. 2027+. 91-93 points." Allen Meadows, Burghound, Issue 84------"This wine is from east-facing vines behind Mme. Ferret’s house, and is thus called by the domaine ‘Clos de Jeanne’ although it is in premier cru Les Perrières. It delivers a substantial wine; here the cask ferment (20% new) is more apparent, yet it holds this will and shows approachably toasty ripe apple aromas. There is abundant extract here but the wine remains impressively fresh and lingers seductively on the finish. 92 points." Charles Curtis MW, Decanter

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