Château Thivin Côte de Brouilly Cuvée Les Griottes 2011. Beaujolais, France

While I was on my tour of the Beaujolais region, I was shown a current copy of the very popular French wine monthly Revue du Vin de France. It featured a portrait piece on Chateau Thivin’s owner Claude Geoffrey and his family. They labelled him Beaujolais’ Aristocrat – quite a title. My visit can confrim; his entire estate the image he and his wife portray, absolutely fit the aristocrat bill perfectly. So let’s see if the 2011 Château Thivin Côte de Brouilly Cuvée Les Griottes tastes aristocratic…


On the nose, this wine doesn’t have much floral range. You get big red berries and subtle ground accents, notably a rocky gravelly component along with a healthy, clean black earth.


Into the gulp, this wine is all about the fruit. This is a really fresh take on waves blackberries, raspberries and blueberry. My notes called the flavour intensity bright but light. Very subtle tannins, and clean finish. The Côte de Brouilly is a very compact AOC, and this is a great example of a very simple, yet satisfying fruit focused style of wine that can come from Côte de Brouilly. Based on all the samples of other Côte de Brouilly wines tasted on the same excursion, the 2011 Château Thivin Côte de Brouilly Cuvée Les Griottes sits at the elegant end of the spectrum. A number of other producers showed bottles with more concentrated fruit as well as greater tannic structure.


Cultured humility, rich tradition and quiet confidence are three hallmarks of aristocracy and this wine. So I guess you can label this wine “Aristocratic.”


Musical Match: From one of Pop Music’s Aristocrats, Donald Fagen his signature Song, I.G.Y. (What a Wonderful World). The I.G.Y. acronym is short for International Geophysical Year – I haven’t a clue what the significance of the term is to the lyrical content of the song, but I am pleased to say that by chance it picks up on some of the earthen aspects in the scent of the wine.


In a larger sense you can hear that this song is not at all bombastic, it is relaxed and confident, precise and melodic. Great parallels for the 2011 Château Thivin Côte de Brouilly Cuvée Les Griottes. Cheers.

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.

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