This week we are helping you set a French table for Mother’s Day, with two wines from a fantastic young Burgundian producer from the village of Marsannay, just south of Dijon. We understand it is a bittersweet Mother’s Day this year, and we’ll be exchanging our favourite restaurants for our own dining room tables. Perhaps we’ll have family over, perhaps we will be chatting to them on zoom, but there is no reason we can’t indulge on some of the finer things in life, and this is a day that we should.
We’ve chosen these two wines from the village of Marsannay for two reasons. Firstly, like our mothers, these wines are unique, fine, pretty, elegant and exuberant expressions of Pinot Noir. Secondly, they are versatile, and will complement a swathe of Autumn foods you put on your table next Sunday. The wines are both from the exciting Domaine Philippe Collotte (now made by Phillippe’s daughter, Isabelle) and include a Rose and Pinot Noir. Both wines are made from the Pinot Noir grape. They are incredible value for wines from this region and are both in a nice ‘drink now’ zone.
Philippe started making wines under the Collotte label in 1981, as a 16 year old, using vineyards owned and farmed by his family. Not exactly street legal, but an early passion for winemaking and a commitment to the village of Marsannay set the Collotte label on its way. Over the years, he has acquired nearby vineyards in more renowned and expensive villages of Gevrey-Chambertin and Chambolle-Musigny. In 2013, his daughter Isabelle joined him as another winemaker and the quality has steadily grown. They own and farm 17 hectares and have become a great source for stylish and attractive Burgundy wines.
Marsannay is a village in Northern Burgundy, just south of Dijon. It’s vineyards date back centuries, though it was only in 1987 that is was officially recognized as its own region of village status in Burgundy. It is now a reference point for great value, high quality, French Pinot Noir, whilst being the only Burgundian region to have an appellation for Rose.
Domaine Philippe Collotte Marsannay Rose 2018
Collotte’s Marsannay Rosé is produced from five parcels of vineyards ranging between 30 years and 60 years. It has more texture, body, seriousness and quality than most Rose that you will find in the South of France. Much of the wine spends time of skins where it picks up more colour, flavor and a fleshy, broad texture. There is still explosive red Pinot Noir fruit flavours, wild strawberry, orange rind, floral characters and even licorice, though it is ultimately refreshing, dry and even tart.
It is aperitif and entrée style Rose. Serve this with hors d’oeuvres like salmon blini, quiche, terrine, sausages or salad. Drink and enjoy this now over the next 12 months.
Domaine Philippe Collotte Marsannay Vieilles Vignes Pinot Noir 2015
Firstly, this Pinot Noir already has a few years on it, and is in an optimum drinking age. Also, worth knowing is that Vieilles Vignes is French for ‘old vines’… this Pinot Noir is produced from vineyards averaging 50 years in age. Hence some serious quality. As they say, vines aren’t good because they’re old, they’re old because they’re good.
The wine favours pure fruit flavor, brightness and elegance over richness or power. It is a finer and fresher style that suits mid term drinking. It has classic Pinot flavours with ripe cherry, blackberry and plums. It is fruit driven with a suppleness. However, this is Burgundy, so there is tannin and some savoury, herbal spice, and a tangy finish.
William Kelly from robertparker.com suggests this will age through until 2040, though I’d suggest drinking these bottles in the next 24 months. They offer a lot of charm right now. If you like them, you can always get some more.
Serve this in Pinot Noir glasses (bowl like) and think about sweet, tender, juicy meats. Roast chicken, duck confit or eye fillet are your goes here. Gravy, jus or mushroom sides, perfect for a Mother’s Day Autumn lunch.
These are classic wines, pretty, perfumed, textured and elegant. If you like your Pinot Noir, they are worth a good look at under $200 for a six pack. We hope you enjoy them with some family and stay safe during these wild times.