Morgon; Dangerous Darling of Beaujolais



The region...
Beaujolais, that famous little area of land forming the southern tip of the long, vertical Burgundy in east France. Famous for what you ask? Its remarkably light, supple reds? How about its oak aged, decade worthy bottles of inimitable fruit. Of the ten Grande Cru villages in Beaujolais, Morgon AC is the second largest (after Brouilly) and considered the second most full bodied, after the more westerly popularized Moulin A Vent.




The grape...
Gamay, for those not yet on the bandwagon, has long been an extremely interesting grape. Grown mainly in Beaujolais, Switzerland, and Niagara Canada, it is indisputably reflective of its environment and master. Scheduled to be the Canadian growers favorite by 2018. Like all varietals, there is a plethora of clones around the world, each with their ever-so-slightly different qualities.  From the lightest red wines in the world, Gamay is provoked to intense concentrations, rich earth tones, and masculine backbones. From floral, blueberry, apricot, and cranberry, to blackberry, plum, mocha and earth. Infamously, poor or cheap renditions, whether French or American, simply lack structure, and often prove dissatisfying for it.


Morgon...
The wines produced here are generally of high character and quality, often amongst the best in Beaujolais. They're not free though, typically in the $30-35 range in Calgary. The wines are typically noted to be robust and aromatic with concentrated red fruits and a fleshy mouthfeel. The French tend not to release their wines terribly premature. So the rule of thumb that tells of young wines being fruity and aged wines feeling more developed is a good guide. Within Morgon, a particular hillside named Cote Du Py is exceptionally sought after, acclaimed for the regions most strengthy editions...


The monthly wine list at TaSTE restaurant on 1st St features six Beaujolais reds for November. The following are pulled from this list...


The Marcel Lapierre 2010 Morgon...
Easily one of the best known producers here. This one is an opulent bright ruby in colour. The glass exuberates red fruits. Sweet cranberry jam, strawberry and currents stewing on the stove. The acids are bright and the concentration pulls at the cheeks like like a jolly rancher. Intense and beautifully fruity.


The Louis Latour 2005 Cote De Py...
On a different stream of thought all together, this one does a savory raspberry thing, extending into dark black/purple fruits. Good leading acid, balanced by a heavy back end; round and robust tannin, a little smokey, earthy, and woody. Seriously postured, this one has been around the block and it shows, nearing 7 years age now.



At Taste, the Lapierre lists for $150 (magnum!) and the Latour for $70. You might also find them on the shelves of Bin 905 on 4th street.



November 2012