Exhibiting aromas of pear, blanched almonds, white flowers and peach, the 2018 Saint-Véran Prélude is medium to full-bodied, satiny and enveloping, with a pillowy core of fruit, lively acids and a saline finish. As I've written before, this cuvée is produced from vines in Prissé and Chasselas, and it's invariably a fine-boned rendition of the appellation no matter the vintage. As I've written before, Frantz Chagnoleau and his wife Caroline Gon (winemaker at Domaine des Héritiers du Comte Lafon) farm their vineyards organically and have expressly sought out cooler, higher-altitude sites. Harvesting is by hand, followed by fermentation and élevage on the lees in almost entirely used barrels. These are tangy, tensile expressions of the Mâconnais, picked early and often displaying a subtle reductive edge—very much in the idiom, in other words, of the contemporary Côte de Beaune. Last year, I sang the praises of the 2017s, and these 2018s are a very worthy successor to that vintage, displaying fine depth and commendable cut in a year that can often be a little facile. Everything reviewed here comes recommended. (WK)
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