Maison Vincent Girardin, Meursault

We tasted here with Marco Caschera, but also caught up with winemaker Eric Germain. They are pleased with the whites, likening them to 2014 but with more depth, and the reds have been a nice surprise having much more weight than they were expecting. They reported some frost in late April, the same date as 2016 coincidently, but straw bales were burnt in the vineyards to ward off the worst of it.

We followed Vincent Girardin from the 1988 vintage, through his stratospheric rise from small cellars in Santenay to bigger ones in Meursault with a successful negoçiant business. Some years ago he sold out to Les Vins d’Autrefois and moved away. The great thing is that the new owners have allowed the existing team to flourish in a way that Vincent perhaps didn’t, letting the talented Eric Germain (son of Henri Germain, our long-time Meursault supplier) get on and make the wines he wants to in his own pure style and using only natural yeasts. They have 21 ha of vines in the domaine, 10 ha owned and 11 ha in a service contract. Grapes from a further 60 ha are bought in, but most of these they harvest themselves. They claim to be organic but are without certification and specialise in the Côte de Beaune having ‘withdrawn’ from the Côte de Nuits. The estate has been fully biodynamic since 2008. Eric has been working hard on the reds, varying the inclusion of stems in the fermentation according to each vintage and has also changed the methods of filtration to soften the tannins. The wines are being marketed successfully by Marco Caschera, whom we have known since his days working with Nicolas Potel.