Monday, October 2, 2023

‘Natural and unpretentious’. This beautiful Beaujolais is just like winemaker Karim Vionnet!

‘Natural and unpretentious’. This beautiful Beaujolais is just like winemaker Karim Vionnet!

Vionnet “Du Beur Dans Les Pinards” Beaujolais Villages (AC) 2020, 14% ABV, 

RRP €24.95. Stockists: Le Caveau, 64 Wine, Greenman Wines, Bradleys Cork

The fruit for Du Beur dans les Pinards comes from a parcel which belonged to the late Jules Chauvet and the cheeky label is a Michel Tolmer /  Philippe Quesnot creation. 

“Who is Jules Chauvet?”

Chauvet was a Beaujolais wine dealer, winemaker, and wine scientist, who throughout the 1980s mentored the Morgon vigneron Marcel Lapierre and his collaborator Jacques Néauport, prefiguring many of today’s ideas about natural wine. 

From the 1980s, other natural wine heroes such as Breton, Lapierre, Foillard and Thevenet emerged. Our winemaker here Karim Vionnet learned from them and especially from Breton with whom he worked. And he learned well. 

Very Highly Recommended.

I didn’t have to get it into the glass to get the amazing aromatics. They can't wait to meet you and make a merry dancing impression immediately the cork is removed. The colour is a little darker than normal though not around the rim. The juicy red berry character continues on its merry light-footed delicious way across the palate before a long and refreshing Beaujolais finish.

Karim Vionnet started his own production in 2000. He farms his parcels without chemicals and makes his wines without additives and jokes that he makes wines that look like him: ‘Natural and unpretentious’

He certainly learned well from Breton and company and fully deserves a bit of butter on his spinach (Du beur means a North African and there is a bit of wordplay going on with beurre the French for butter and Vionnet’s first name). Must get Pascal at le Caveau to explain it better when next we meet.

Karim’s parcels are located in the villages of Quincié, Beaujeu and Lantignié, on very varied types of soil, ranging from marls, schists, granite and sand. Since 2020, his daughter Noemie has joined the estate, and proud dad Karim hasn’t stopped smiling since. Thanks to Le Caveau for much of this info!

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