Even in a strip of land so suited to the highest level wine production, such as the Côte-d’Or in Burgundy, there are few wineries that can boast the privilege of being closely linked to the timeless myths, as in the case of Rouget, whose homonymous owner, Emmanuel Rouoget, lived the vineyard side by side, from the age of 18, with his uncle Henri Jayer. For the few who did not know, when we talk about Jayer, we talk about a figure who literally revolutionized the way of making wine in those lands, to the point that it is not out of place to talk about a “before” and an “after” Henri Jayer. Emmanuel took advantage of a really special growth path in the vineyard, ending up inheriting the lands of Jayer and his production philosophy, all things that in turn, since 2011, is transmitting to his sons Nicolas (in the vineyard) and Guillaume (in the cellar).
The Rouget winery can now count on a small number of prestigious plots distributed in a band of five kilometers that start from Savigny les Beaune, to the south, to get to Echezaux, to the north. Among them are the famous Richebourg, whose 1978 bottle, auctioned, reached figures unthinkable until then (over 38,000 dollars) for a Pinot Noir from Burgundy, and the even more famous Cros-Parantoux, in Vosne Romanée, considered by most critics a Grand Cru “masked” into a 1er Cru. It was, and is, a vineyard of one hectare (currently in the hands of Rouget for 70% and Méo-Camuzet for 30) literally created by Jayer who, blindly believing in the viticultural vocation of that small plot, came to break the rock with 400 sticks of dynamite to make it cultivable.
In the light of this legacy importance, it is no wonder that Rouget chose to continue making wine in the style used by his uncle, a style summarized in a phrase that sounds more or less like this: “I am not a brave guy, and since Nature does everything so well, I have no reason to replace myself to It”. Mass selections, work in the vineyard carried out following the lunar phases, consideration of natural elements as allies of the winemaker and not of enemies to be opposed or dominated, are just some of the habits that regulate the work in the vineyard. In the cellar the phases of vinification, in which the fruity component of Pinot Noir is exalted to the maximum, start from the whole destemming and continue with the prefermentative cold maceration, and from fermentation and maceration in cement vats. The aging of the wines takes place in barriques of various steps, depending on the wine appellation, for about 22 months, on the lees, with the use of sulfitation only to the extent permitted by natural viticulture. At the right moment the wines are reassembled in 1000 cubic meters tanks and, then, bottled, without clarification or filtration, before being placed on the market.
Vosne Romanée Les Beaux-Monts 2010 as well, a prestigious 1er Cru on the border between Vosne Romanée and Echezuax, following the same production disciplinary, shows in the glass an almost impalpable ruby color, with an olfactory range that opens on notes of marasca cherry, blood orange, red currant and withered rose, followed by vanilla, pyric hints, roasting of coffee (almost cappuccino) and Chinese lacquer, with final empyraeumatic and haematic/ferrous echoes. The palate strikes for the intense vibration, fresh and fleshy, with an impalpable and well-paced tannins, and a touch of spiciness from black pepper; all enriched by the return of marasca cherry, rose and blood that accompany the sip until an almost endless closure.
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