JF Mugnier Nuits St Georges Clos de la Marechale Rouge 1er Cru 2018
100% Pinot Noir. Although Jacques-Frédéric (“Fréd”) Mugnier easily makes every critic’s shortlist of the most respected and influential winemakers in Burgundy, his path to the pinnacle of Burgundy was far from predictable. His professional training was in Petroleum Engineering, and he began his career with offshore oil projects in the North Sea and Africa. Nor did he come from a family of winemakers. Fréd’s paternal forbearer and namesake Frédéric had been a successful distiller in Dijon in the middle of the 19th century, profiting greatly from the boom in Absinthe. The business prospered and Frédéric acquired the Château de Chambolle-Musigny in 1863 from the Morey-Mange family, along with a few hectares of vineyards. The family added the Clos de la Marechale in 1902. The Domaine was managed for a period by Maison Faiveley and later by Bernard Clair, the cask wine being sold off in barrel to négoces. Although Fréd’s father occasionally visited the Château, he remained very removed from the winemaking and the vineyards. It was not until 1984, at the age of almost thirty, that Fréd Mugnier took an interest in his vineyards. In the twenty-five years since taking the helm as a relative novice, Fréd Mugnier has emerged as one of the dominant influences in Burgundy, producing some of the most elegant and compelling examples of Pinot Noir. The vines for their Clos de la Marechale were originally planted in 1910 and most recently in 1980. Chemicals have not been used in Mugnier vineyards since the mid-1990s with the domaine philosophy about respecting nature. After fermentation with native yeasts, the wine is aged for 18 months in French oak barrels (15% news). A classic Pinot in every sense of the word.