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|Appellation/Sub-Region||Hautes Côtes de Nuits AOC|
|Vineyard/Cellar Practices||Sustainably Grown, Vegan|
As summers get progressively warmer in the Burgundy region, we find ourselves looking up the slope of the Côte d’Or escarpment. The vineyard areas that lie above the more famous villages used to have climate conditions considered unreliable for consistent ripening of grapes, due to the prevailing west wind. In recent vintages, those cooling winds have proven to be more advantageous, as the vineyards further down the east-facing slopes have suffered from excessive heat in the height of summer. Growers such as Julien Cruchandeau, who purchased plots in the hautes côtes (‘high slopes’) beginning in 2003, now find themselves in a good position for producing pinot noir with ripeness and depth. Cruchandeau’s half-hectare plot in the site known as “Les Valançons” faces south/southwest, at the relatively high altitude of 380 meters. He farms without herbicides or pesticides and intentionally keeps yields low. The partially-destemmed harvest undergoes a cold maceration of ten days before aging on the lees for 15 months in barrel (of which 20% are new). Packed with red fruit flavor, this 2019 vintage delivers intensity without sacrificing freshness and lift. A superb value for an elegant Burgundy that is sure to improve even further as it ages. Sustainably grown, vegan.