ARLAUD Bonnes Mares 2011Producer note: Cyprien Arlaud, who reiterated that the domaine was now certified biodynamic, describes 2011 as having had a "very early beginning with a hot and dry spring followed by a relatively wet and cool summer. In hindsight it's easy to see that the wet summer was a good thing because there was quite a bit of hydric stress caused by the dry spring. Basically had the summer not been wet there would have been a lot of vines shutting down with predictable consequences for grape quality. Otherwise though, we really didn't have much trouble with controlling disease as we were precise with our treatments. We began picking on the 3rd of September with our young vines and brought in clean fruit with correct phenolic maturities and solid sugars and acid levels. We used a bit more whole clusters for our ferments and probably averaged around 30% though it varied by wine. As to the wines, they are fruity without being simply and possess a good combination of ripeness and acidity such that they are refreshing to drink. If I was to compare 2011 with another recent vintage I would probably suggest that it is a richer version of 2001." Note that Arlaud explained that few of the wines had been racked since they were placed in barrel and thus many wines were reduced.
Tasting note: Discreet nuances of spice, earth, dried flowers and leather add depth to the otherwise fresh and cool red currant and wild berry-infused aromas. There is excellent power, size, weight and drive to the impressively rich broad-shouldered flavors that culminate in a mouth coating, firm and energetic finish. This should not only age well, but actually require it as the Bonnes Mares is the most reserved wine in the range.