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Sebastien Besson

Sebastien Besson Chenas 2018 (750ml)

Sebastien Besson Chenas 2018 (750ml)

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The Chenas is a well-structured example of bush vine Gamay that grows on the intense granite soils of the Cru. When the grapes reach their ideal balance between sugar and acidity, they are hand harvested and brought to the cellar in Lancié. Natural fermentation in both stainless and cement takes place with whole clusters, until they are gently pressed after a couple of weeks, returned to their vessel to complete fermenting, and then aged in concrete for about 6 months. A light sulfur addition was made before bottling, and then after 5 months in bottle, the wine was released to market. A robustly pretty nose of red berries and flowers shoots forth from the dark hued juice in the glass, and leads to a well-structured, yet crunchy freshness in the mouth. The length and finesse in this wine are absolutely delicious, with ample acidity, bright fruit, floral hints, and stone.

There is a very exciting renaissance that has been happening in the Beaujolais region of France, and at its core is a new generation of winemakers that have learned everything they know from their progenitors. To pair with that unparalleled guidance, there is a youthful energy and worldly view that is taking the wines and the region to yet again new heights. Sébastien Besson is now the fourth generation of the family to take the helm at Domaine du Penlois, which originated in the 1920's by his great-grandfather Benoît, situated on the small hill called Lancié (nestled in between Morgon, Fleuri, and Moulin-à-Vent). Sébastien's father, Maxence, took over in 1977 and accrued more and more Cru vineyards in the region, giving the Domaine 30 hectares in total. While making sustainably farmed Domaine wines with his father, Sébastien began an eponymous project in 2016. He converted small granite-rich plots on the property to strict organic farming, spanning not only portions of their Village Appellation sites, but parcels of three Crus as well (a total of 7 hectares). With natural fermentations and aging in concrete vats, and a small sulfur addition before bottling, the wines of Sébasten Besson are pure, driven, and remarkable expressions of top Beaujolais. 

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