Domaine Georges Noëllat has within a few years moved from the dark and unknown to a rising bright star on the Burgundy heaven.
Maxime Cheurlin is in my view an unique talent … a natural .. with an intuitive ability for making great Burgundies. Within a few years he has managed to improve quality immensely … and Domaine Georges Noëllat is now among the top end producers in Vosne-Romanee.
The 2014s marks another step up the quality ladder … as the purity and delicacy has improved. In short – the 2014s here are sexy and delicate offering so much Burgundy pleasure.
A bit of background on Domaine Georges Noëllat
The Noëllat name is well known in Vosne-Romanee and the family is one way or another involved in quite a number of domaines, as the family is also related to the Jayer family.
The Georges Noëllat domaine originates from the Ernest Louis Eugene Noëllat side of the family .. just as Domaine Cecile Tremblay and Domaine Michel Noëllat1.
Ernest Louis Noëllat was the son of Felix Noellat and the brother of the better known Charles Felix Noellat1. Ernest Louis Noëllat was married to Eugene Esther Fournier in 19061. The couple had two sons before Ernest-Louis sadly was killed during the First World War. The youngest son was named Georges Roger Noëllat1 (1914 – 1982) and he was the founder of Domaine Georges Noëllat.
Georges was married to Marcelle Lorillard and they had two children, a son Bernard Noëllat, and a daughter Marie-Thérése Noëllat (1940 – )1. When Georges Noëllat passed away in 1982 his widow took over the Domaine until 1986.
The daughter Marie-Thérése was married to Jacques Cheurlin a Champagne producer – the grandfather of Maxime Cheurlin1. The couple had two children Patrice and Francis Cheurlin (1964 -) , the father of Maxime. Jacques Cheurlin and Marie-Thérése took over after Marcelle Noëllat in 1986 but following their divorce Marie-Thérése took over the running of the estate in 19913. From 1990 to 2009 most of the production was sold to Drouhin and Jadot2.
The son Francis Cheurlin had two children Maxime and his sister Anne-Cecile Cheurlin. In 2010 Maxime Cheurlin took over the winemaking and the running of the Georges Noëllat estate … i.e. the first vintage in the new era is 2010. Maxime was only 20 years old when he began his journey at Domaine Georges Noëllat … very impressive indeed.
Overall impressions of the 2014s from Georges Noëllat
The 2014s from Maxime Cheurlin are truly delicate and refined wines … offering a very pure and sexy expression of the Vosne and Nuits-Saint-Georges terroirs .. not to forget the two big wines from Flagey-Echezeaux.
Where the 2013s had a slightly sturdy element .. the purity and delicacy of the 2014s is unrivalled by the previous vintages … more transparent and vibrant than the 2012s, and more refined and charming than the 2013s.
For me the unique quality of the 2014s – in general – is the inner tension or nerve of the fruit … it may well feel lightfooted, but it’s due to this tension and the airyness of the fruit.
All the wines from Maxime have this wonderful quality of the 2014 vintage … and the expression of terroir is therefore truly magnificent … like looking down into a clear and cool mountain lake seeing every grain of sand and small pebble on the bottom.
The oak is present in the wines … but not intrusive in my view, the percentage is not so important – but in some cases the toast of the oak has been reduced .. and this is in my view more important in 2014.
In my experience the Georges Noëllat wines need a bit of time after bottling … and are best kept at least 1 – 2 years before tasting … and of course much longer for drinking. If one taste the wines a year after bottling the oak can be quite forward … so better keep them 2 years to let the wine settle down. So for the moment I would stay away from the 2013s … and try the 2012s. I had a gorgeous Vosne-Romanee 2012 at La Cabotte in Nuits-Saint-Georges just after the tasting at Domaine Georges Noëllat in November … it was young but very sexy and delicate.
Tasting Notes from tasting on November 17th 2015
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee 2014
The Vosne-Romanee village 2014 from George Noellat is a hedonistic treasure. 40% new oak is used on this wine. In the nose bright and red fruit – raspberries, variation of cherries – brought forward by a fine spicy Vosne minerality – quite floral. On the palate fine and delicate fruit – with a very lovely cool fruit on the midpalate – love the inner tension and energy – it’s quite velvet and long with a fine balance and tension for this level. Best village effort so far from Maxime – in my view.
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Chaumes 2014
A wine from the best view in Vosne … or to be more precise from the plot located just above and next to the garden of Domaine George Noëllat … overlooking La Tache. This is one of the best location on Les Chaumes and that is indeed showing in this wine. The 2014 Les Chaumes is gorgeously floral and expressive. In the nose juicy red fruit – raspberries, hint of pomegranate and plum, very floral with a wide range of Vosne spices – cinnamon, peony rose. On the palate rich, almost silky, yet vibrant with a lovely core of energetic red fruit .. quite openly knit with a fine view to the terroir. 50% new oak used … for this beauty. Adorable .. cant wait to taste this again …
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne Romanee Petits Monts 2014
The Vosne Petits Monts is a decadent wine … The nose is bursting with juicy and cool red and dark fruits … a notch more airy than the Chaumes offering a finely tuned filigree minerality. On the palate deep layered fruit – slightly darker set than the Chaumes – with a lovely inner tension and energy. It’s long, quite intense with a fine acidity adding to the refinement and airyness. Will provide a lot of decadent, hedonistic pleasure over the next decades … a top end Petits Monts …
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Boudots 2014
I always feel sorry for the Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Boudots – not easy to impress after the Les Petits Monts. That being said the 2014 edition of Boudots is actually giving the Petits Monts a run for the money. In the bouquet darker and more weighty fruit – notes of cherries, raspberries – hints of coffee and chocolate supported by a fine slightly eathy minerality. On the palate quite rich and weighty offering a more substantial impression of the delicate 2014 fruit. Very finely balanced, pure and refined for a Boudots …
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Aux Cras 2014
Ok admitted … I love NSG Aux Cras as a terroir – so biased. The Aux Cras is made from a plot with very old vines – 75 – 80 y.o. yielding a gorgeous juice in 2014. In the bouquet variations of sweet red and dark berries … cherries, raspberries and pomegranate – spiced with hints of game and an earthy but stony minerality. On the palate more expressive and floral than the Boudots with a lovely core of red fruit – so energetic and airy. Love the nerve and vibrancy of this wine … LOVE this wine.
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux-Monts 2014
The Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux-Monts is a step up in quality from the other 1er crus. In the bouquet rich red and dark fruit .. notes of raspberries, red cherries and boysenberries … supported by a quite intense minerality and a healthy dose of oak. On the palate more weighty and slightly more tightly wound with a core of red cool red fruit – love the playful energy in the midpalate fruit. It’s a textbook Beaux Monts … will require some time to unfold completely but is nevertheless showing plenty already. This is a gorgeous wine in the making. Should be noted that the vines in this plot are 90+ years old … so a pretty special wine.
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Echezeaux 2014
Moving just down slope to Les Cruots we find the terroir of the Georges Noëllat Echezeaux. The nose offers a very floral expression of fruit and minerality – notes of raspberries, pomegranate and boysenberries – layered and complex with an intense filigree minerality. On the palate more tight and intense, with a quite forward and powerful minerality infused with cool, delicate and airy red fruits … it’s focused, long and defined, offering all one could want from a top Echezeaux – now rivalling the efforts from Liger-Belair, Grivot, Rouget and DRC.
Domaine Georges Noëllat, Grands Echezeaux 2014
The Grands Echezeaux is another step up in quality offering a more hedonistic and charming version of the Flagey-Echezeaux qualities. In the bouquet layered red and dark fruits … lovely depth and generosity offering a delicate play between sweet red fruits and darker more vibrant notes … all brought forward by a deep elegant earthy minerality. This is a textbook Grands Echezeaux with a nervy and vibrant midpalate fruit – rich and airy – long and generous – with that classic hedonistic opulence on the midpalate. A wine build for pleasure, joy and indulgence on a cold January evening … preferably from magnum and in abundance in large Riedel cups! Oh joy!
References & Sources:
- Noëllat family tree – by Kenneth McNamara
- Domaine Georges Noëllat – by Le Serbet
- Domaine Georges Noëllat – Cave de Prestige
Sincere thanks to Ian Westcott for the editorial help on this article.
Tasting Notes for this producer
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee 2013 June 4, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux-Monts 2013 March 28, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Grands Echezeaux 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Echezeaux 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne Les Beaux-Monts 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Aux Cras 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Boudots 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne Romanee Petits Monts 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Chaumes 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee 2014 March 8, 2016
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Grands Echezeaux 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Echezeaux 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux-Monts 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Aux Cras 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges Boudots 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne Romanee Petits Monts 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee Les Chaumes 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Vosne-Romanee 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noëllat, Nuits-Saint-Georges 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Vosne Les Chaumes 2012 May 7, 2014
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Vosne-Romanee 2012 May 1, 2014
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Vosne Les Beaux Monts 2012 April 30, 2014
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Grands Echezeaux 2012 April 29, 2014
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Echezeaux 2012 April 28, 2014
- Domaine Georges Noellat, Vosne Les Petits Monts 2012 April 27, 2014
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