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Domaine Lucien Boillot Volnay 1er Cru Les Caillerets 2014

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Domaine Lucien Boillot Volnay 1er Cru Les Caillerets 2014 is bright ruby coloured, with violet, currant, cherry, spices, game and prune compote on the nose. Concentrated and complex yet delicate and nuanced. Charming to drink in its fruit-driven youth, after time in the bottle it will reveal more complex notes of spice and game while maintaining its elegance. This wine is characterised by its finesse, balancing its tannic structure with a discreet acidity.

  • Country: France
  • Region: Burgundy
  • Subregion: Côte De Beaune, Volnay
  • Vintage: 2014
  • Colour: Red
  • Grape Variety: Pinot Noir
  • ABV: 13.5%
  • Bottle Size: 75cl
  • Closure: Natural cork
  • Style: Concentrated, complex yet nuanced
  • Drink With: Escalope de veau à l'estragon

Les Caillerets is our favourite Volnay vineyard, and this Lucien Boillot bottling is a great expression of its terroir. The vines are between 40 and 50 years of age and give perfect fruit for Pierre Boillot to vinify. 30% new oak was used for maturation.

Les Caillerets is a premier cru climat of the Volnay appellation in the Côte De Beaune. It is one of Volnay's pre-eminent vineyards, due to the high quality of the terroir, which is well suited to Pinot Noir. Caillerets premier cru wines are subtle and elegant, but with good concentration and complexity; they typically display notes of spice and red berry fruits.

The vineyard is on the southern boundary of Volnay, where it abuts the Santenots climat (which, despite its classification as a Volnay Premier Cru, is actually in the Meursault commune). Les Caillerets is a rather fragmented vineyard: it comprises the Caillerets Dessus and En Caillerets lieux-dits, and the walled Clos Des 60 Ouvrées can be found in the vineyard's northwest corner.

Les Caillerets gets its name ("The Small Pebbles") from the light-reflecting stones that make up a distinctively high proportion of its soils. These are limestone dominant, particularly at the top of the slope, and offer excellent drainage. This means vines are forced to push roots deep into the limestone to get at hydration and nutrients, which lessens the vines' vigour and yield and makes for small, concentrated berries, perfect for vinification.

The mesoclimate of the vineyard is made suitable for viticulture by the angle of its slope, which faces vines toward the southeast and consequently the rising sun. This is enough sunlight to encourage slow, even ripening, but the grapes are shielded from the harsher afternoon sun. Acidity is retained in the berries as a result, bringing balance to the finished wine.

About the grower

Pierre Boillot is a rare master of both the Côtes de Beaune and the Côtes de Nuits - not only does he have the vineyards but also the savoir-faire and the skill. Pierre inherited this domaine from his father Lucien, whose name it still carries. Pierre worked together with his brother Louis for years, but in 2003 the estate was split to give each son a share of the vineyards when Louis was married. Pierre’s talent has subsequently become much more evident as he has had full control over the domaine, and in addition to retaining the original cellars in Gevrey-Chambertin, Pierre has instituted a rigorous revitalising of the soils and the vines in all of his vineyards.

Pierre inherited very old vines from his father in the Côtes de Nuits, and from his great-grandfather Henri Boillot, who was originally from Volnay, in the Côtes de Beaune. Many of his vineyards are under-appreciated treasures: Volnay Les Angles, originally classified as one of the top premier cru sites in Volnay in the 19th century; Pommard Croix Noires right below Rugiens, Gevrey-Chambertin Les Cherbaudes, right next to Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru; and Gevrey-Chambertin Les Corbeaux right next to Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru. Every wine is a classic representation of its appellation, from Volnay and Pommard to Gevrey and Nuits-Saint-Georges. Pierre’s work in the cellars is geared towards transparent, terroir-driven wines of purity and finesse. However, he has nothing against a degree of rich, plump, lusciousness in his red wines.