Producer Article

Domaine de Montille

Last edited on 10/21/2011 by Eric
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No official website. Producer bio from importer website appears below.

Located in Volnay, just south of Beaune, this winery boasts some of the most prized red wine producing vineyards of the Côte de Beaune. From their holdings in Volnay and Pommard, Hubert and Etienne de Montille (father & son) craft some of the most sought after Pinot Noirs in all of Burgundy. In fact, their wines can be found on the lists of virtually every three star restraurant in France. In 1993 they acquired a little more than a hectare of the prestigious Puligny-Montrachet Le Cailleret vineyard. This prized vineyard is located adjacent to the famed Montrachet. In just a few short years, this wine has become one of the most sought after whites from the region. In 2003 there were more additions to the Volnays and Pommards. They were able to purchase over two hectares in the prime Beaune Premier Cru vineyards. 2004 will see yet another addition. This will be the domaine’s first Grand Cru vineyards. One hectare located in the famed Corton-Charlemagne vineyard was added this year. It is planted half in red and half in white.

The vinification at this estate is traditional with a large emphasis placed on punching down the cap during the peak of the fermentation. The stems are left in in percentages of 0-25% depending on the vintage, and the maceration is quite long (12-16 days). The percentage of new oak used never excedes 25%.

Stylistically, their wines tend to be different than those of the other well-known names of Volnay and Pommard. The emphasis here is on concentration and purity of fruit, firm structure, and above all, the ability to improve and become more complex with aging. In addition, their philosophy is that chaptalization should never raise the potential alcohol level above 12%. This approach to vinification came about by accident during the 1959 vintage, when Hubert miscalculated the amount of sugar needed for his cuvée of Volnay "Taillepieds." The resulting alcohol level reached only 11.5%, and to his great surprise, the 1959 Taillepieds ended up being more complex and having a greater purity of fruit than his other cuvées from the same vintage. The tasting of this wine 25 years later, proved that its lack of alcohol had in no way impeded its ability to age with grace into a fine old bottle of burgundy. Consequently, one will never experience the alcohol "burn," ever-present in modern young red burgundies, from the nose of these wines. Because of their moderate alcohol levels, the wines tend to be shy during their first couple of years in the bottle. It is after this time, that they flesh out and provide an abundance of the fascinating aromas and flavors which we seek in great red burgundy.

Hubert de Montille is a larger than life wine-maker who manages year after year in any weather to produce enchanting bottles of wine that rank with the very best in the world. In Burgundy, among his peers, he is considered to be one of the greatest in the region because from his Premier Cru vineyards in the Côte de Beaune, he succeeds in producing wines that match or surpass those of his colleagues up north in the Grand Cru vineyards of the Côte de Nuits.

Etienne took over from his father in the late 1990’s, and is now considered among the elite of Burgundy’s growers. In addition to managing his family estate, in 2001, he was given control of the prestigious Château de Puligny-Montrachet with the goal of turning it around to focus on quality. In just a couple of short years, this winery has become one of the top estates in the Côte de Beaune.