Château Philippe-le-Hardi Héloise 2010 Mercurey, Burgundy, France

The Burgundian producer Château Philippe-le-Hardi offers a few variants of Pinot Noir hailing from Mercurey. In general terms Mercurey offers more robust and spicey wines than the vast majority of other Burgundy reds, and the Héloise bottle from Château Philippe-le-Hardi is a great example where that style really shines. I tasted this wine at the Grand Dégustation wine show in Montreal and the winery rep taught me an interesting French phrase for describing firecracker bottles such as these. His characterization of the wine was that it was a “Petit Jésus en culotte de velour.” Roughly translated is a “Baby Jesus in velour undies.” You can debate the quantifying quality of the statement, but it sure sounds better than “Parker gave it a…”


So what does a bottle of baby Jesus in velour undies taste like? Well in the case of the Château Philippe-le-Hardi Héloise Mercurey the Nose gave soft wood infused typical and ripe Pinot fruit. Into the Gulp the fruit was big and round, silky smooth; with cherry, strawberry compote on a wooden spoon. Nice peppery spice.


Musical Match: Interstate Love Affair by Stone Temple Pilots. Big? Yes. Smokey? Yes. Velvet undies? Yup. Really satisfying tune with big groovy hooks, and wonderful smooth silk. A great example of how grunge rock sounded great on radio, and the Philippe-le-Hardi Héloise is a great example of how a wine can be silky smooth and powerful at the same time.

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  • Yves Mailloux

    Nice and personnal description!

  • steveshanahan

    Merci Yves, Do you have any Mercurey recommendations?

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