THE 2021 GROWING SEASON
Despite being unable to vinify the Le Carquelin and Champ de cour separately due to frost damage, these remain some of the finest wines in Beaujolais that are beautifully elegant in 2021.
As has been the case for the last few years, the month of January was cool, followed by a mild February and a cool March, except for the last week, which was unusually hot for the season. Budbreak arrived about a week later than in 2020 and occurred uniformly in early April.
The real challenge came on the 5-8th of April where widespread frost affected a large part of the vineyard causing significant damage, with some vineyards showing damage close to 90-100%.
The first 10 days of June were slightly above average temperature and relatively dry (half the amount of normal rain). Flowering began on the 6th June with temperatures between the 10th and 20th June being 4.2°C higher than normal.
At the end of June cooler temperatures returned along with some rain: 2.8°C below normal and over three times the normal precipitation. The weather that followed flowering is responsible for the coulure observed in some vineyards. These dreary weather conditions continued into July, with temperatures 1.6°C below average, and twice the precipitation.
In terms of temperature, August was in line with July. Despite this very cool weather for the season, veraison was underway from the 2nd August and was in this respect very similar to the 2019 vintage.
Whilst the beginning of harvest was disrupted by rain, the rest took place under normal temperatures and drier conditions.
Overall the 2021 vintage can be characterized by cool temperatures throughout the year, a severe frost episode at the beginning of April, high levels of precipitation in July as well as significant mildew pressure.
Despite these challenges, the dry and mild weather around harvest combined with the low yields allowed for a good overall progression of ripening and a high-quality crop.
MOULIN-À-VENT COEUR DE TERROIRS 2021
A blend of four parcels in Moulin-à-Vent, planted with 50 year-old vines. Carquelin and Champ de Cour have also gone into Coeur de Terroirs in 2021. Peony perfume and pretty exotic spices, redolent of whole bunch fermentation despite being entirely destemmed in 2021 – Nadine Gublin acknowledged that this aromatic delicacy is a curious beneficent mark of the 2021 vintage. Spicy and cohesive on the palate, white pepper, crunchy and with a bright sheen of Gamay energy. Excellent.
Corney & Barrow Score 17.5
Recommended drinking from 2024–2029
£125/CASE OF 6 BOTTLES, IN BOND UK
MOULIN-À-VENT LE CLOS DU MOULIN-À-VENT, MONOPOLE 2021
Le Clos, beside the iconic windmill, is the only monopole in Moulin-à-Vent. It is a 0.92 hectare south-facing walled vineyard, planted with 70+ year-old untrellised vines. Darker and more imposing on the nose than the Coeur de Terroirs, with peppery spices, powerful red and black fruit and an imposing florality. The palate is again full of fresh black fruit and spice, underpinned with a granitic, textural mid-palate. Impressive length and persistence here highlighting the innate density of Le Clos.
Corney & Barrow Score 18
Recommended drinking from 2025–2035
£275/CASE OF 6 BOTTLES, IN BOND UK