Forgotten. We spent years in search of a nice Aligoté. Forever in the shadow of the finest Chardonnays in the world, Burgundy’s “other white grape” is neither profound nor expensive. Most of our searches yielded disappointment: wines with too much acid, too little body, or both.
But last year, we at last struck gold at last. Boyer-Martenot’s Aligoté is unlike any other we’ve had, with a rich mouthfeel and unusually complex bouquet. Vincent Boyer, a highly skilled craftsman of rich, elegant Meursault, has managed to apply a bit of his magic to this grape. Forget what you know about Aligoté — Boyer’s is real white Burgundy.
Smooth. From vines with an average age over 40 years, and from the ripest vintage (2015) in a decade, Boyer’s Aligoté is smoother and rounder than any we’ve had. The secret is his use of 5- and 7-year-old barrels to age the wine — barrels too old to impart much oak flavor, but which help microoxygenation and add softness and depth.
In the nose Boyer’s 2015 Aligoté shows wild honey and herbs, with white flowers and classic green apple. The mouth is bright and lively, with a dry, chalky richness that’s nearly unheard of for Aligoté. For readers interested in making kir, we also managed to find an exceptional crème de cassis last summer — a glass of this wine joined by a splash of cassis will be a fantastic match.
But, for once, the cassis isn’t mandatory — this is a crisp, pleasant glass of white Burgundy on its own.
Boyer-Martenot Aligoté 2015
Ansonia Retail: $24
6+ bottle price : $19/bot
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