Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent dates back to 1732 and gave its name to the appellation when it was created in 1936. The estate has 37 hectares of vines across the appellation’s finest terroirs on mostly granitic soils rich in iron oxide, copper and manganese. This wine is 100% Gamay from five of the best sites in the Moulin-à-Vent appellation made using vines planted mostly in the 1960s and earlier at high density (10,000 vines per hectare) with yields limited to 27hl/ha.
Hand-harvested grapes are cold-soaked for three weeks before fermentation with 20% whole bunches. Pumping over and some pigeage (foot-stomping) aid extraction and contribute roundness and finesse. 40% of the wine is aged in mostly used, medium-toast Allier and Vosges oak for 18 months. The wine is noted for smoothness and fruit-oak harmony - richness and energy.
This is from a hail-affected vintage, and all the wine was aged in used barrels because of the reduced quantity. This has a brightness and delicacy, as well as some structure with lovely raspberry and cherry notes, as well as some fine spices. A very pretty, expressive wine with a bit of grip, and probably good for a decade in the cellar – more a short/medium term ager than a long. Very impressive, showing off the focus of 2017.
92 points, Wine Anorak (April 2020)
The 2017 Moulin-à-Vent is born from a challenging vintage in which hail took with it half of the estate’s yields and two-thirds of the production of this wine. In the glass, the 2017 is soft, fruit and absolutely delicious. Although not terribly complex, the 2017 is a wine of immediate pleasure and a terrific choice for drinking now and over the next handful of years. Sweet red cherry, cinnamon, and dried flowers add intrigue.
91 points, Vinous (October 2020)
This wine is a blend across the estate, producing rich tannins and juicy black fruits. Good acidity balances the structure of the wine, giving potential as well as present fruitiness.
90 points, Wine Enthusiast (September 2020)
Light, fleshy tannins edge the black cherry, steeped raspberry and mineral notes of this light-bodied red, with savory details of grilled herb, tea and rose petal lingering into the finish.
89 points, Gillian Sciaretta, Wine Spectator (November 2019)
Mid crimson. Bottled. Lovely fresh lightly stemmy red fruit. A hint of white mushrooms. Tangy and deeply fruited on the palate, the roundness of the tannins accentuating the lovely fruit character, which is ripe but fresh. Chewy and generous.
16 points, JancisRobinson.com (January 2019)
“Today, after a period of being the pariahs of the wine world, they are once again worthy objects of interest for serious wine lovers. This is all due to the magic combination of the Gamay grape and the particular characteristics of the best villages in the region, including the famous ‘crus’ Beaujolais.” Jancis Robinson MW
The most full bodied and powerful wines in Beaujolais, the region can also create the longest-lasting examples. Because of their richness and structure the wine can support the use of oak which adds more tannin and structure to the wines. The term, “Vieillie en fût de chêne', generally indicated this practice… and price point.