L'Arenite Madone Fleurie
Perfumed, aromatic and with a notable floral twist of violets. Silky and elegant throughout the palate with an abundance of blackcurrant and red berry fruits.
Match with a roast leg of lamb in winter, or during the summer, chill and serve with roast or barbecued chicken or pork.
'Arenite' is the terroir of pinky, crumbly sandstone of the La Madone vineyards, rated as one of the best vineyards in Fleurie. It is these soils that dominate the 2,000 acres of Fleurie land and is key to the final style of Fleurie, deemed to be the more feminine of the Beaujolais' crus. The east and south-east facing vineyards are very steep in places, lying below the Chapel of the Madonna at the top of the hill. Gamay Noir vines range from 40 to 90 years of age.
Using the goblet training of vines there is a high level of pruning. There is minimum use of pesticides in the vineyard and no systematic use of chemicals for rot treatment. Grapes are hand-picked and whole-berry fermented for 8-10 days followed by a further 2 or 3 days on the skin to enhance aromas. The juice and skins are pressed after 8-10 fermentation. First press wine is returned to the wine and left for 8 months before bottling.
Guardian Review, Fiona Beckett January 2011
For a touch more finesse, try La Reine de L'Arenite's Fleurie La Madone which has that delicate, just picked rasberry fruit that makes gamay, such an appealing grape. It would be great, lightly chilled, with seared salmon or Tuna.