Chateau Le Puy, Bartélemy (2011)

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From the importer: “Barthelemy” is Le Puy's crowning achievement—the fruit is from their greatest, highest-altitude, poorest-topsoil site, which is treated even more minimally in the cellar than the“Emilien” above, and released several years after bottling. Like the Emilien, the Barthelemy is fermented in huge cement vats without human involvement. But, whereas the Emilienspends its first year in largefoudresand its second in barriques, the Barthelemy is moved directly into barriques—gross lees and all—for its two-yearelevage. During that time, it is“dynamized”—stirred gently in alternating clockwise and counterclockwise strokes—at each full moon, and the lees are subsequently subsumed over time. This ultra-labor-intensive method nourishes the wine and protects it against oxidation, and no sulfur is applied at any point in the process, from harvest to bottling. Evenso, the Barthelemy is perfectly stable and can age for many decades, as proven stunningly in a one-hundred-year vertical tasting the Amoreaus hosted in New York last year. Those ofyou who fondly recall the 2011 Emilien (the first vintage we imported) will be in awe of this 2011 Barthelemy, as itstrongly resembles its sibling in its brashly savory, explosivecharacter, yet with greater aromatic complexity and a lengthier, deeper finish. That a warm-vintage wine that spent so much time on its gross lees can be so electrifyingly fresh isremarkable, and it speaks to the vitality of these vineyards which have never seen chemicals and have been worked biodynamically for generations. The complete palate harmonywhich is a Le Puy hallmark is fully evident, and although 2010 is often considered a greater vintage in Bordeaux, the 2011 Barthelemy may have the edge over its 2010 counterpartwhen it comes to overall impact and complexity. 85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon.
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Red Wine

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