In a nutshell: An elegant, ripe and rounded red Burgundy from the village of Mercurey by the excellent Domaine Paul et Marie Jacqueson.
The lowdown: The Côte Chalonnaise village of Mercurey predominately produces reds offering deeper and more full-bodied wines than other areas of the Chalonnaise. The highly regarded producer Domaine Paul et Jacqueson operate without herbicides, pick and sort by hand, crush the berries the old school way with feet, and mature in traditional Burgundy barrels for 12 months. The Les Vaux vineyard planted in 1985 occupies a southerly aspect at the western end of the village itself producing approachable yet really quite elegant wines. This 2018 is smooth and rounded with ripe cherry and strawberry fruits, touches of spice and earthy notes, mild tannins and balanced acidity with a long and satisfying finish. A rewarding, supple Pinot Noir from the Chalonnaise.
When to drink: Perfect with roast pork dishes, also try with traditional beef stews or duck.
Founded by Henri Jacqueson in 1947, succeeded by his son Paul in 1972 and joined by Pauls daughter Marie in 2006, and more recently by his son Pierre, this domaine has long been recognised as one of the very best in the Côte Chalonnaise and its wines adorn the lists of many of the finest restaurants in France. They have 13 hectares of wonderfully sited vines, many of which are very old, and prune hard to reduce yields to around 35 hl/ha. They only work the vineyards manually, with very minimal vine treatments. They are one of very few producers in the village (together with Dureuil-Janthial) to hand-pick everything. Extremely proficient winemaking and judicious use of new oak (20% for whites and 25% for reds) make for beautifully crafted, ripe, intense, sensual wines which have the class to belie their origins.