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Sebastien Besson

Sebastien Besson L'Agrume Maceration Blanc 2020 (750ml)

Sebastien Besson L'Agrume Maceration Blanc 2020 (750ml)

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The Sébastien Besson ‘L’Agrume’ Maceration is a stunning and unique example of Chardonnay from Beaujolais country. Labeled Vin de France because the region doesn’t yet allow for this style of wine, the 20-year-old Chardonnay vines grow on a small plot of clay and limestone not far from the winery. Having spent 18 days on the skins during natural fermentation, the grapes were then gently pressed and returned to the stainless steel until complete (about 25 days total). Moved to both 225L and 500L used barrels, the wine was aged for 6 months before being bottled with only a touch of sulfites and without filtration. Agrume means ‘citrus’ to tip a hat to the natural citrus and bright characters of the grape, but this wine layers in so much extra depth and complexity than just citrus. With remarkable aromatics of earthy fruit, and a full texture in the mouth that lasts forever, this skin-fermented Chard is no joke.

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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