Even in our portfolio of low-profile winemakers, Jean-Marc Monnet is under the radar. We visit him every year, and we still have trouble remembering all the turns to find his domaine. He has no website, his house is unmarked, and there’s one tiny road sign.
Jean-Marc himself is as understated as his winery — gentle and soft spoken, he offhandedly mentioned during our visit this spring that the prestigious Guide Hachette had named him Winemaker of the Year. “For the Beaujolais?” we asked, “that’s great!” Nope, he smiled humbly, for all of France.
Though we were certainly impressed, we weren’t shocked. Monnet makes delicious red Beaujolais at remarkably low pricepoints. Served a bit cool, they are the perfect summer red.
Chiroubles (she-roo-bluh) is usually on the more floral, lightweight end of the Beaujolais spectrum. Monnet’s 2017 Chiroubles is characteristically gorgeous in the nose, but in the mouth it’s far more substantial. The nose shows intense perfume of violets, graphite, honey, earth, and wild cherries. The mouth is punchy and vibrant, with bursting tannins and cool refreshing notes of cranberries and woods.
A glass of this at the right temperature is as refreshing as a white or a rosé. We recommend serving it a bit warmer than white, but cooler than room temperature. Serve it with cheese on crackers, on its own as a cocktail red, or with a weeknight roast chicken.
Monnet Chiroubles 2017
bottle price: $19
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