The Domaine de Marrans Chiroubles AOC comes from one medium sized Beaujolais producer who is actually based in Fleurie. It is quite typical of many producers who start to expand their operation to do so with wines made from grapes outside their own AOC to diversify their offering. I also liked his Fleurie, but I found with a the flight the current generation winemaker Mathieu Melinand presented timestamped three vintages very well. He was walking through three vintages, he started with 2011, 2010 and when I expected an ’09 to finish us off (because of all the well earned hullaballoo about that vintage) he proudly poured a 2007, which most consider a more-or-less average year. I will spare you the drama and the wait, the 2007 was still doing quite well. Wine makers are always happy for great grapes, but making great wines from average grapes is what makes them the proudest. Stylistically, these three Domaine de Marrans Chiroubles all proudly displayed their farm fresh authentic side, with a touch of city refinement.
Domaine des Marrans Chiroubles 2011
Nose: Enough wood to pick up a trace of vanilla and add depth to the blueberry and raspberry nose.
Gulp: Slightly over abundant acid at first, followed those blue and red fruit aspects from the nose which blended the acid down to a pleasant light menthol on the end.
Musical Match: A band that does country and city very well together, Blue Rodeo jingle and jangle an honest blend of old and new. “Til I Am Myself Again.” is an enjoyable piece, and yet it looks forward to better times. The wine is fine now, but it too may get better down the road.
Domaine des Marrans Chiroubles 2010
Nose: More concentrated on the blueberry notes than the 2011, as such a pleasantly sweeter fragrance.
Gulp: Oddly enough, the sweeter smelling wine has a larger effect on the mouth, blackberry, raspberry blend well and is punctuated with some tame black pepper.
Musical Match: Staying with the Blue Rodeo connection, this one starts off sweeter, but has that deeper gulp, so I am going with their “Trust Yourself.” With a pretty sweet intro, the tune gets a bit heavier and has plenty of black pepper guitar notes.
Domaine des Marrans Chiroubles 2007
Nose: Clean wood, floral notes develop and again the fruit aspect remains true to blueberry.
Gulp: The acid that I noticed in the the 2011 has washed itself away, the blueberry is still there, some smaller amounts of the black pepper are present and I pick up some spice (thyme) showing up in the mature bottle. None of these wines showed tannins stronger than mild, but the 2007 didn’t show any diminished tannin relative to her younger sisters. The wine has a few more things going on as the wine ages, it is not complex per se, but more complete.
Musical Match: More mature, more complete, and yet very simple. As I said at the top these wines have kept their farm appeal. JJ Cale is mature, and his band is very much completely grooving to a song that is simple pleasure that has mature very well: “Call in the Breeze.”
Special thanks to Inter Beaujolais for providing all transportation, hotels, meals and access to the wonderful wine and winemakers of the Beaujolais wine region of France during a four day tour. The wine discussed in this blog entry was tasted during that promotional tour.