Domaine des Marrans Fleurie 2018
The juicy aromas and bright acidity combine to make the ultimate appetite stimulant – a great wine to open at your next party and sure to be enjoyed by all.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Mathieu Mélinand farms 45-year-old vines in pink granite soils for this Fleurie, fermenting the fruit as whole clusters without added yeasts. He ages it in large-format, old oak barrels, bottling a wine that releases a musky breath of the earth before settling into scents of roses, notes of pomegranate and a soildriven, humus-like richness. Pour it with boudin noir.
Domaine des Marrans is located in Fleurie, in the heart of the northernmost section of Beaujolais. Founded in 1970, the current proprietor is the young and talented Mathieu Mélinand, who joined the family domaine in 2008. With old vines and crystalline granite sites, Mathieu is growing some of the most pristine Gamay.
The vines are pruned in the traditional Gobelet vinetraining method and the harvest is done only by hand, using small crates to minimize oxidation. In the cellar, vinification is old school, with semi-carbonic maceration using whole clusters, minimal intervention, and only indigenous yeasts used.
The wines are then aged in large older barrels for 10 months before bottling. This lineup is remarkably pure and fresh.
The bucolic region often identified as the southern part of Burgundy, Beaujolais actually doesn’t have a whole lot in common with the rest of the region in terms of climate, soil types and grape varieties. Beaujolais achieves its own identity with variations on style of one grape, Gamay.
Gamay was actually grown throughout all of Burgundy until 1395 when the Duke of Burgundy banished it south, making room for Pinot Noir to inhabit all of the “superior” hillsides of Burgundy proper. This was good news for Gamay as it produces a much better wine in the granitic soils of Beaujolais, compared with the limestone escarpments of the Côte d’Or.
Four styles of Beaujolais wines exist. The simplest, and one that has regrettably given the region a subpar reputation, is Beaujolais Nouveau. This is the Beaujolais wine that is made using carbonic maceration (a quick fermentation that results in sweet aromas) and is released on the third Thursday of November in the same year as harvest. It's meant to drink young and is flirty, fruity and fun. The rest of Beaujolais is where the serious wines are found. Aside from the wines simply labelled, Beaujolais, there are the Beaujolais-Villages wines, which must come from the hilly northern part of the region, and offer reasonable values with some gems among them. The superior sections are the cru vineyards coming from ten distinct communes: St-Amour, Juliénas, Chénas, Moulin-à-Vent, Fleurie, Chiroubles, Morgon, Regnié, Brouilly, and Côte de Brouilly. Any cru Beajolais will have its commune name prominent on the label.
Delightfully playful, but also capable of impressive gravitas, Gamay is responsible for juicy, berry-packed wines. From Beaujolais, Gamay generally has three classes: Beaujolais Nouveau, a decidedly young, fruit-driven wine, Beaujolais Villages and Cru Beaujolais. The Villages and Crus are highly ranked grape growing communes whose wines are capable of improving with age whereas Nouveau, released two months after harvest, is intended for immediate consumption. Somm Secret—The ten different Crus have their own distinct personalities—Fleurie is delicate and floral, Côte de Brouilly is concentrated and elegant and Morgon is structured and age-worthy.