Last year, one of our insider contacts in Beaune clued us in on an emerging micro-producer causing serious buzz. We learned that the entire operation was just two friends manually crafting the tiniest of lots from organically farmed single vineyards throughout the golden slopes of Burgundy, of which seemed to be exclusively sold by word of mouth. Obviously, we jumped to attention but quickly discovered that aside from a few passionate connoisseurs privately bringing a few bottles stateside or happening upon one at choice European restaurants, these were painfully hard to track down.
So, you can immediately count yourself lucky when pulling the cork on today’s “Clos du Roy.” First, this preternatural site is dripping with nobility, having been in possession of the Dukes of Burgundy and subsequently the King of France throughout the Middle Ages—there’s a reason Kermit Lynch calls this prized vineyard “one of Burgundy’s better-kept secrets.” Secondly, and more urgently, Moron-Garcia’s production barely eclipsed 100 cases in 2017 and despite a cellar-direct importation, we only managed to scrape together a tiny fraction. Moron-Garcia truly has the look and feel of an up-and-coming cult superstar, and when you get to experience today’s incredibly age-worthy gem from one of the most important sites in northern Côte de Nuits you’ll immediately understand why. Note: Quantities are exceedingly limited and this can’t be found anywhere else in America!
Two thousand sixteen was an eventful year for longtime friends Mathieu Moron and Pierre-Olivier Garcia. When the former’s father gifted him one acre of vines in Nuits-Saint-Georges, they put their heads together and decided to go for it. So, Mathieu and Pierre-Olivier, with their tiny sliver of vines, purchased a house in the center of town and immediately went to work. In a matter of months, they had transformed it into a functioning winery and were prepared for the inaugural harvest of their one acre, as well as a few other leased parcels from around the region. With old-school farming, new-age winemaking, and a growing collection of micro-bottlings, Moron-Garcia is poised to be Burgundy’s next up-and-coming producer.
Just above the fêted village of Gevrey-Chambertin and Fixin, Marsannay is perched in the northern reaches of the Côte de Nuits and “Clos du Roy” is its northernmost site. Being a “clos,” it is surrounded by a stone wall that helps retain heat while also avoiding the brunt of any winds. The soils consist of a light gravelly deposit—grèzes litée—that sits on a bed of iron-rich limestone and marl. Throughout the growing season, the duo is determined to add biodiversity and farm naturally at all costs by bringing in various insects/animals to enrich the balance of the land, manually plowing, and using organic mixtures to treat their crop. The grapes are mostly de-stemmed and after fermentation, the wine is sent into once-used French barrels for over 12 months.
There’s a reason that bottles from “Clos du Roy” don’t come cheap: They’re loaded with tightly coiled fruit and vivid minerality and are begging for a deep slumber in one’s cellar. Translation: they are incredibly serious wines! However, if you’re keen on checking out a bottle in the near future, by all means go ahead—just make sure you treat Moron-Garcia’s 2017 to a 60-90-minute decant and have your largest Burgundy stems at-the-ready. With time, the wine reveals gorgeous, hardy notes of black cherry, red plum skin, black tea, pomegranate oil, wet violets, lavender, brambleberries, potpourri, crushed stones, iron, and a touch of spice. The palate is a constantly revolving door that reveals intensity, fine polish, and crunchiness to its vivid core of dark fruit and crushed minerals. And, it only continues blossoming as the hours pass by. It provides a phenomenal experience right now, but I cannot wait to see what this bottle can do in the next 3-5 years. I think 2025 will yield a genuine masterpiece. Enjoy!
Burgundy / Côte de Nuits
Marsannay / “Clos du Roy” Lieu-Dit
Pinot Noir 100%
Once-Used French Barrels
Large Burgundy Stem