Discreet wood influence sets off the underbrush and wild herb-suffused red and dark currant scented nose. There is unusually good volume and muscle for Les Arvelets which is usually refined and delicate that delivers fine length on the youthfully austere and saline finish. This well-balanced effort is really quite good and worth checking out and particularly so for value.
The 2016 Fixin 1er Cru les Arvelets includes 80% whole-bunch fruit—a change since Virgile began farming the vineyard in 2006 when it was completely destemmed. It has quite a feisty bouquet: dark berry fruit, marmalade and quince, maybe just a slight hint of VA. The palate is more controlled and conveys the opulence of Fixin, adorned with those leitmotifs of bright blue fruit, delivered with style and panache. It feels tender in the mouth with a touch of tobacco on the aftertaste. Give this a three or four years in bottle for the aromatics to learn some manners.(NM)
(Lignier works with two hectares of vines on thin red soil over rock; the 80- and 40-year-old vines produced a modest 30 hectoliters per hectare in 2016): Good medium red. Aromas of redcurrant, iron, tobacco and mocha, plus a hint of leather ("my enemy here is reduction," noted Lignier, who vinified the wine with 60% whole clusters to avoid that issue). Nicely sweet in the middle palate, then minerally and firmly tannic on the back half, even a bit austere, finishing with good vinosity and a note of blond tobacco. These vines are planted right on the mother rock but enjoy a cooler eastern exposure. The fruit was picked at 12.3% potential alcohol and chaptalized to 12.8%.(ST)
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