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Domaine Tupinier-Bautista 2019 – “Mercurey at its most gourmand and seductive”*

Domaine Tupinier-Bautista, Mercurey

“The 2019 vintage has turned out brilliantly at this address”*

Manu Bautista began picking on the 5th Sept, a few days earlier than in 2018.  The fruit was of fine quality but the berries were smaller due to relative lack of water during the summer months resulting in yields which were 15% down on the previous vintage.

Manu’s wines never lack for depth of colour which stems partly from extraction gained during a 10 day cold soaking prior to fermentation and also, this year, from a lower juice to skin ratio.  Tupinier is always engagingly enthusiastic about his wines and is certainly right to be so with his 2019’s which harness evident ripeness with surprising freshness bearing in mind the relatively arid growing season.  Throughout the range he integrates mouth filling fruit with vibrant tannins underpinned by a light touch of oak. These wines will delight in youth and also offer clear promise as ‘vins de garde’

Bourgogne Rouge 2019                                                                                  


Youthful and exuberant in all aspects.  The nose raises the spirits with a fresh, uplifting scent of raspberry and hedgerow fruit.  The palate is decidedly ‘croquant’, as Manu says,  crunchy and vigorous. I tasted it two months after bottling and the tannins will need six months to relax into the fruit. Best from late 2021 to 2025

Mercurey Vieilles Vignes 2019


This was harvested slightly earlier than his other Mercurey cuvees. A percentage of new oak adds a light toastiness to the nose and palate which is lively and grippy.  His Vielles Vignes cuvee is essentially fruit driven with overtones of Mercurey’s hallmark redcurrants.  The 50 year old vines are the Domaine’s oldest and add depth of flavour.  Best from 2022 to 2026

“The 2019 Mercurey Vieilles Vignes opens in the glass with aromas of raspberries and plums mingled with sweet spices and raw cocoa. Medium to full-bodied, bright and fleshy, with lively acids and velvety tannins, it’s elegant and charming. This will drink well out of the gates.”*

Mercurey ‘Clos des Touches’ 2019


This comes from a tiny plot of vines just below Manu’s house and cuverie.  Whilst just a village ‘lieu dit’ it is altogether more complex. The fruit quality is fine and exuberant and there is a beguilingly feminine lift to the aromas, and the tannins develop silky length and notable breadth of flavour.  Despite tasting an unfinished wine from cask I was struck by the precocious sense of harmony on a wine so young.  This is Premier Cru quality in all but name.  Best from 2022 to 2030

“Gourmand and charming, the 2019 Mercurey Clos des Touches wafts from the glass with aromas of plums, raspberries, spices and orange rind. Medium to full-bodied, layered and enveloping, with melting tannins and a fleshy core of fruit, it concludes with a perfumed, rose-inflected finish.”*

Mercurey 1er Cru Sazenay 2019


This is a fine example of how limestone adds a dimension to the predominantly clay based soils. It heightens and adds lift on the nose with a floral scent and adds an intriguing saline edge to the fruit.  We passed up on the 2018 but loved the 2019 with its emphasis more on elegance than power.  This is a fine, classic example of Mercurey which will give pleasure over many years.  Best from 2023 to 2030

“Aromas of cassis, preserved plums, orange rind and rose petals preface the 2019 Mercurey 1er Cru En Sazenay, a medium to full-bodied, fleshy and nicely concentrated wine that’s deep and fleshy, with fine concentration, powdery tannins and a long, succulent finish.”*

Mercurey 1er Cru Vellées Vieilles Vignes 2019


“The 2019 Mercurey 1er Cru Les Vellées is superb, unwinding in the glass with notes of wild berries, cherries and plums, mingled with hints of pencil shavings and raw cocoa. Medium to full-bodied, layered and concentrated, it’s deep and fleshy, framed by powdery tannins and lively acids. Form 80-year-old vines, this is the finest Vellées I’ve ever tasted from Manu Bautista.”*

Mercurey 1er Cru Clos du Roi 2019                                                              

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This parcel of vines is acknowledged as Mercurey’s ‘grand terroir’.  The wine is initially restrained but gradually opens up to reveal concentrated aromas of crushed cherries.  The fruit has a sense of presence on the palate, like a great actor on the stage, and one’s attention is held as character develops seamlessly through some notably silky tannins. Long, poised and refined.  Best from 2024 to 2035

*All notes and quotes from William Kelley, Wine Advocate, July 2021

William Kelley’s Wine Advocate write up on the domaine is well worth reading, William has followed this domaine for a number of years and he knows the wines, and Manu himself, well.

“As I have written before, the genial Manu Bautista’s small winery in the hamlet of Touches is one of the Côte Chalonnaise’s finest estates, and I encourage readers wishing to encounter red and white Mercurey at its most gourmand and seductive to seek out his wines. Emphasizing that everything follows from the quality of the raw materials, Bautista harvests by hand in small cases. Whites are vinified without stirring, the naturally rich wines of Mercurey having, he contends, no need for supplemental “fat” from the lees; reds see long cuvaisons with temperatures kept in the mid-80s Fahrenheit to preserve the expression of fruit. Élevage then takes place in barrels and demi-muids exclusively derived from—and made to measure by—the talented Stéphane Chassin, whose Rully cooperage supplies many of the region’s best addresses. Topping up is meticulous, and Bautista’s attention to detail will be evident to anyone who visits his cellars. The results speak for themselves: supple, fragrant reds bursting with vibrant fruit that entirely conceals their velvety tannins and precise, flavorful and harmonious whites. In short, Bautista is one of a small handful of producers that demonstrate just what is possible when Mercurey’s terroirs are lavished with the same attention devoted to their more famous Côte d’Or counterparts. The 2019 vintage has turned out brilliantly at this address, and an informal sampling of the young 2020s from barrel suggests similar levels of excellence.”

William Kelley, Wine Advocate, July 2021