Nicolas Potel, the well-known and highly regarded winemaker in Burgundy, has founded a new Domaine (estate-owned vineyards) and Maison (a négociant, making wine with fruit from other growers). Nicolas is an old friend of Ernst Loosen, and we are extremely happy to have him join our import portfolio.
Domaine de Bellene is located in Beaune, the very heart of Burgundy. Nicolas now owns 60 acres of vineyards in several villages throughout the Côte d'Or. The vineyards have been farmed according to organic practices since 2006 and are now certified BIO. Vinification is minimalist in approach — no enzymes, cultured yeasts or acid adjustments are used, and filtration is avoided. Nicolas purchased the 16th century estate buildings in 2005 and is working to renovate them in as green a manner as possible. Environmental responsibility is being integrated into all aspects of the estate: buildings, vineyards, cellar work, energy conservation and generation, and packaging materials.
The new négociant company is called Maison Roche de Bellene. It was founded by Nicolas in 2009, after his forced departure from his former négociant company, Maison Nicolas Potel. At Roche de Bellene the terroir-focused winemaking philosophy is the same as when he founded the original Maison in 1998. Nicolas has maintained his relationships with a majority of the growers that he has worked with over the past 15 years, and continually finds new ones. The emphasis at Roche de Bellene is on individual terroirs from vieilles vignes (old vines – 35 years or older) that are farmed responsibly. All of his growers are either BIO certified or farming according to the principles of lutte raisonée ('sustainable viticulture'). This enables Nicolas to consistently produce the expressive, terroir-driven style that is his vision.
PLEASE NOTE: Nicolas Potel is no longer associated with Maison Nicolas Potel in any way. The real Nicolas Potel is only at Bellene!ABOUT THE NAME BELLENE
The name comes from "Belenos," an ancient Gallic god of sun and beauty. It is the origin of the city name, Beaune, which was called "Belena" in Roman times, and "Bellene" in the Middle Ages.DOMAINE DE BELLENE 2010 vintage PRESS notes |
The range of Roche de Bellene wines includes a broad selection of Villages, Premier Cru and Grand Cru appellations from both the Côte de Beaune and the Côte de Nuits. The core U.S. import selection is shown here. For information about other Maison wines (available on a pre-arrival basis), as well as wines from the Domaine, please contact Loosen Bros. USA. Additional wines from Maison Roche de Bellene and Domaine de Bellene are available by special order – see below.WHITE WINES
The entry-level white Burgundy comes from old-vine parcels in the Côte de Beaune and Côte Chalonnaise. The vines have an average age of 65 years and, as with all the wines, harvesting is done by hand. For this cuvée, about half is vinified in stainless steel and half in used oak barrels. This gives a nice balance of fresh fruit with a light touch of oak.
This villages wine is from a 3.5-acre, sustainably farmed vineyard parcel in Meursault that was planted in 1947. It spends 15 months in barrel (40% new oak) and captures the full, rich style of this famous village while maintaining a fine structure.
A limited-production wine (only 200 cases) from a parcel in Puligny- Montrachet that's less than an acre, and was planted in 1954. The wine is produced with natural yeast fermentation (the standard practice at Roche de Bellene) and spends 12 months in barrel.
Montagny is a village at the southern end of the Côte Chalonnaise that is well known for its pure, mineral-driven white wines. This wine is from a parcel of vines that is 28 years old and is farmed according to the method that the French call lutte raisonnée ("sustainable viticulture" – as is the practice for most of the growers that Nicolas Potel works with). The wine is produced in stainless steel tanks, without oak.
The village of Saint-Aubin is in a side valley, just to the west of Chassagne-Montrachet. However, the premier cru vineyard "Le Charmois" is an eastfacing site directly adjacent to the premier crus of Chassagne. This wine comes from a one-acre parcel that was planted in 1976. The wine matures in barrel for 15 months, with 40% new oak.
A beautiful premier cru, from a tiny, east-facing parcel planted in 1978. on clay and limestone soil. Directly adjacent to the Montrachet grand cru vineyards. Very low yield, native yeast fermentation, and 15 months in oak barrels (30% new).
The entry-level red Burgundy comes from vineyards in the Côte de Beaune and Côte de Nuits. The vines range in age from 56 to 88 years and are farmed sustainably. The major part (80%) of this wine is matured in barriques (15% of which is new oak) and the remainder is done in stainless steel. This maintains a pure style with bright fruit and a fine texture.
The village of Savigny-les-Beaune is in a side valley, a bit to the west of Beaune. This wine comes from a naturally low-yielding vineyard parcel that is 64 years old (planted in 1947). Gentle vinification with indigenous yeast and 14 months of barrel aging (30% new oak) give the wine a very fruity aroma and a broader structure that is typical of the somewhat more rustic style of this appellation.
A pure, dark fruit wine from this highly regarded village in the Côte de Beaune, which lies between Pommard and Meursault. There is an extra dimension of richness from the very old vines, which were planted in 1934, and naturally produce a smaller, more concentrated crop. The wine spends 15 months in barrel, with 30% new oak.
From a two-acre parcel of old vines (planted in 1950) in one of the greatest villages of the Côtes de Nuits. Gevrey-Chambertin is prized for the fullflavored, earthy style of its wines, and that character is expertly captured here in this wine that is naturally fermented and spends 15 months in barrique (25% new oak). Firm, ripe tannins give the wine excellent aging potential.
This village is revered for its famous grands crus. From old-vine parcels, 46 to 52 years old. Fermented naturally, and matured in oak barrels (20% new), with no fining.
The name “Perrières” refers to the historic quarries that neighbored the vines for many years. This parcel is planted on calcareous soil with marine deposits.
This premier cru site is in the area of Gevrey-Chambertin known as the Côtes St. Jacques, near the top of the vineyard slope and adjacent to the Combes aux Moines premier cru.
This excellent premier cru site lies just on the northern border of Nuits-Saint-Georges, adjacent to the superb Aux Malconsorts vineyard in Vosne-Romanée.
This is from the upper, Grand Cru-classified part of les Lolières, which is on the Ladoix-Serrigny side of the Corton hill. It is a lesser-known site, but produces typically Corton-style wines, with precise, pure fruit and a charming elegance.
Additional Wines from Maison Roche de Bellene
These limited-production wines from Maison Roche de Bellene are available on a pre-arrival basis. Please inquire about availability.
Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru, Les Referts
Meursault Premier Cru, Les Charmes
Meursault Premier Cru, Les Gouttes d'Or
Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru
Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru
Volnay Premier Cru, Les Pitures
Pommard Premier Cru, Les Charmots
Chambolle-Musigny Premier Cru, Les Noirots
Vosne-Romanée Premier Cru, Aux Malconsorts
Corton Grand Cru, Les Grandes Lolières
Latricières-Chambertin Grand Cru
Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru
Clos de Bougeot Grand Cru
Echezeaux Grand Cru
Chambertin Grand Cru
Wines from Domaine de Bellene
These estate-grown Domaine wines can be ordered on a pre-arrival basis, subject to availability. These limited-production wines from Maison Roche de Bellene are available on a pre-arrival basis. Please inquire about availability.
Sales materials for some wines are still in production. If you need something that you can’t find here, please e-mail us and we will get it to you as quickly as possible.