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Mâconnais & Beaujolais

Domaine Giles Morat

Vergisson

Based in Vergisson, the highest village in the appellation, Domaine Morat produce wines which combine Pouilly-Fuissé’s ripe, sun kissed fruit with a modern directness and freshness.

Background

an there be a more arresting view for a vigneron than the panorama which greets the Morat family each morning as they throw open the shutters?  To the north is the Roc de Vergisson and to the south the equally imposing Roc de Solutre, two massive limestone escarpments which dominate the landscape. On a clear day, 150 miles to the east, Mont Blanc is clearly visible.

Nestling beneath the Roc de Vergisson lie their holdings of Pouilly grown on a mix of limestone and clay soils, which the Morats have carefully maintained under an organic regime since 2001.  Essential to the freshness and clarity of expression of their wines is the altitude of between 350m and 450m at which the vines are grown. In these days of global warming these are qualities to be prized.

Based in Vergisson, the highest village in the appellation, Domaine Morat produce wines which combine Pouilly-Fuissé’s ripe, sun kissed fruit with a modern directness and freshness. It is the altitude at which their vineyards sit which gives their wines their cut, as well as the Morat’s meticulous approach to viticulture; as Joëlle said, ‘There are no good cooks with bad ingredients’.

Morat own 6ha of vineyards, 1.5 in St Veran, the rest, divided into 17 parcels, are in Pouilly Fuissé. Not surprisingly for people so dedicated to their terroir, the domaine has been certified organic since 2001. Grass and wildflowers grow in the vines, the rows are ploughed when needed. All the vineyard work is done by hand, the domaine’s small size means that everything can be completed with exacting precision. In the winery fermentations happen in vat or barrel and use natural yeasts. Very little is done, intervention is kept to a minimum, new oak used sparingly, to allow each terroir to show its full potential.

Current Vintages

White WinesVintage
Several south facing plots, on poor limestone soils, planted 1959-1983, at an average altitude of 300ms. Fermented and aged on its lees in stainless steel to give a refreshing, fruit forward wine which drinks well from the word go. Bottled in April after the harvest. The 2019 shows crisply energetic apple and apricot fruit, nice bite and tension and finishes with a twist of lime.
2019
Fans of Asterix will know what the name means. For those Tin Tin readers among you a Menhir is an ancient standing stone, one of which has been found in these vineyards. A selection of plots from around Vergisson between 300-350 m’s altitude, from vines of a minimum of 25 years old. Fermented and aged in 60% Vat and 40% barrel, none of which are new. A textbook Pouilly-Fuissé, with its nose of Apricot, citrus and stone fruit leading to a well concentrated palate supported by zippy acids.
2018
Sitting at the top of a south facing slope these vines, planted in 1981, grow on Triassic Clay, a very ancient soil type that pre-dates the limestone which now covers most of it. Rich in magnesium, it is unique to Pouilly-Fuissé and, Joëlle says, is highly valued both for its drought and rot resisting properties as well as for the freshness and minerality they feel it brings to the wines. Fermented in barrels, of which only 15% are new. One can certainly imagine the clays in the wines sun kissed yet restrained flavours.
2018
Perhaps the best vineyard in Pouilly-Fuissé, Sur La Roche covers 17ha and is shared between several growers. Domaine Morat has a great parcel, right at the top of the slope were the high-quality clay barely covers the limestone beneath. Vines planted between 1967 and 1978 with roots deep in the bed rock. 100% in oak, 15% new. Bottled after 11 months on its lees. With its seamless palate and breezy acidity this wine put me in mind of bright sunshine on a cold spring day, it contrasts the warm site and the cool rock below. Finishes with a burst of pink grapefruit.
2018
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