Lignier Michelot Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru Les Chenevery 2012

Lignier Michelot Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru Les Chenevery 2012

Lignier Michelot Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru Les Chenevery 2012

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Planted from 1952 to 1957. 50% de-stemmed, short cold pre-fermentation maceration, rapid de-vatting. 12 months aging in oak barrels (30% new), 3 months settling in tank, unfiltered.

Les Chenevery is a small Premier Cru climat.The vineyard is split in two by local AOC law: only the higher, western half is classified as Premier Cru. Les Chenevery Premier Cru wines are smooth and medium bodied with some aromatic notes of spice. Les Chenevery has a similar soil makeup to the vineyards that surround it. Limestone and clay are found in the vineyards here, giving vines a well-drained environment where water is stored in the clay. This is one of Morey-Saint-Denis' lesser-known vineyards, due to its small size and slightly less favorable position. However, several highly respected domaines make a Les Chenevery Premier Cru wine, including Domaine Lignier-Michelot.

Domaine Lignier-Michelot has been part of the landscape of Morey St. Denis since early in the twentieth century, but like so many of its neighbors throughout the Cote d’Or, during most of that time the domaine was content to sell off its entire production to negociants. The current head of this fine eight hectare domaine, Virgile Lignier, who joined his father Maurice at the domaine in 1992, is the fourth generation to run the family property, and was instrumental in the family beginning to offer their wines for sale in bottle. Not coincidently, 1992 was the first year that Domaine Lignier-Michelot began to estate bottle their wines and sell them directly. In the late 1990s Virgile succeeded his father as head of the domaine, with 2000 being the first vintage that he vinified completely on his own. Virgile Lignier is meticulous in the vineyards, where he routinely prunes aggressively to limit yields, and seeks to be as natural as possible when confronting viticultural challenges in the vineyard. His goal is that which was often stated by Henri Jayer: to produce the finest fruit possible from which to work with so that the wine can make itself as much as is possible. He completely de-stems the grapes and allows the cool must to macerate for five or six days prior to the onset of fermentation (again, a la Monsieur Jayer). The wines are then aged in varying percentages of new oak for a year to fifteen months (village wines see about twenty percent new wood, premier crus about one-third, and the Clos de la Roche is raised in anywhere from eighty to one hundred percent new oak, depending on the quality of the vintage), racked into tank for another three months to allow the wines to fall brilliant, and are bottled unfined and unfiltered. The style of the Lignier-Michelot wines is dramatic and opulent, with sappy cores of fruit, excellent expressions of terroir, and the balance and structure to allow graceful aging in the cellar. All in all this is one of the top domaines in Morey St. Denis. The relatively recent history of selling all their production in bottle has kept the domaine’s profile relatively low key at the present time, which translates into outstanding opportunities for good value.











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