The ANTI-Nouveau - Long Haul Beaujolais
2009 Roilette Fleurie "Cuvée Tardive" MAGNUMS
Beaujolais at Its Most Ageable and Profound
The 2009 Roilette "Cuvée Tardive" has the potential to be the most monumental Tardive to date. Roilette's owner/winemaker Alain Coudert himself compares the 09 to the 91, a wine that serves as the estate's benchmark.
I can't think of another producer in Beaujolais outside of Kermit Lynch's "Gang of Four" who has attracted such a cult following.
And in the Roilette stable, the "Cuvée Tardive" is the key bottling, a wine that twists the "Beaujolais Nouveau" idea 180 degrees - this is a wine with a massive reputation for aging and for simply outrageous complexity.
The 2009 Tardive is perhaps the grandest to date; a wine so dense with concentration that 750mls just don't do it justice. Which is why today, we focus on the rarer "bigger brother" - Tardive MAGNUMS.
This is one of those wines that delivers such complexity, ageability, and value, that for the true geek cellar, purchasing mags feels mandatory (or, at the very least, just very, very wise) - just like with the recent Pepiere Briords offer. Magnums offer the perfect format for the wine to age gracefully as it develops in the cellar over the next five, ten and even twenty years.
Roilette's Tardive comes from two choice parcels of eighty-plus-year-old vines. Since this cult bottling's first vintage in 95, the wine has been subject to hoarding by wine geeks who obsess over the wine's mythical depths.
Alain Coudert and his Clos de la Roilette offers us one of the most intriguing and singular styles of Beaujolais. There's definitely a Burgundian element, but more so than most Beaujolais (aside from Foillard's rare 3.14 bottling) there's a nod to the Northern Rhône as well. Think of the dark spiced cherries of the Côte de Beaune married to the meaty, savory elegance of Côte-Rôtie, toss in some Beaujolais playfulness and you start to get the picture.
The typical profile of Roilette's wines is one of dark fruits (black cherries, mulberries, plums), olives, licorice, smoke, mint, a complex array of flowers and a salty, meaty, nutty quality. As the long description suggests, these are seriously complex wines.
Roilette's wines carry a regal grandeur and complex internal architecture. If such richness and intensity sounds unusual for Fleurie, which is generally thought to be one of the more delicate Crus, this is because Roilette is really more Moulin-à-Vent in terroir. Roilette may carry Fleurie on the label, but get into the clay soils of Roilette's parcels and you'll find plenty of manganese, typical of the soils of Moulin-à-Vent. Please check out the picture to the right taken from the Couderts' house. Alain Coudert was eager to point out that the division between Fleurie and Moulin-à-Vent begins at the tree line - the soils, however, are exactly the same.
Roilette's Tardive possesses a majesty that certainly deserves to share the "King of Beaujolais" title that Moulin-à-Vents swagger around with. In fact, one of the greatest, most memorable Beaujolais I've ever had was a 99 Tardive, a lion of a wine still dense with concentration when it was opened. It's very likely that no one in Beaujolais is making as ageworthy and complex wines as Roilette. The 2009 promises to achieve similar heights.
Given the wine's reputation and the buzz circling the 2009 vintage, our limited supply of mags will likely sell out in a matter of hours. Please give us your maximum order and we'll do our best to fill it. All orders are subject to confirmation.
To order, please reply to this email or call the store at (212) 980-9463.
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