The outstanding Pinot Noir of this wine originates from the prestigious vineyards of Les Rugiens in Pommard, a Premier Cru known for its first-class quality and position. Close to the village and facing Volnay, this area extends over 12.66 hectares, divided into the sub-regions of Les Rugiens-Hauts and Les Rugiens-Bas. Selbes is considered one of the best terroirs of Pommard, comparable only to Clos de Epeneaux. It is often equated with Grand Cru quality. Domaine Lejeune owns a plot of 0.26 hectares on this noble piece of vineyard land, whose soil is rich in limestone, clay and loam and is reddish in colour due to its high iron content. The name Rugiens, which means "red", is due to this characteristic. These characteristics provide a wine that is inherent to the classic, powerful, earthy and age-worthy Pommard style.
In the traditional style of Lejeune, each vat was filled with 30-40% whole grapes and carefully crushed with the feet to release enough juice. High quality is achieved through alcoholic fermentation, naturally triggered by yeasts found in the environment and on the grape skin. This process takes a total of three weeks, with a so-called semi-carbohydrate maceration taking place in the first few days. This means that the majority of the berries are still fermenting as a whole and not just the pulp. After fermentation, the wine matures in oak barrels, around 60-75% of new wood. Before bottling, there is a slight sulphurisation, but no filtration or fining.
Colouring and aroma
The Les Rugiens 2020 shows a bright, slightly transparent cherry red. Its aroma is an ensemble of intense red and dark fruit, grilled meat and herb aromas, tamari, undergrowth and earthy notes. With a little distance, subtle smoky nuances, a hint of Earl Grey and mint, plus a united sweetness of ripe raspberries become perceptible.
Although young, Les Rugiens reveals its impressive class: the lively energy emanating from the chalky soil meets a restless, deep blend of tobacco, leather and spices that has yet to unfold. Dark fruits, meat and herbs are also present. A juicy, earthy yet silky Pommard that impresses with its powerful complexity and sensual component. Time will fully reveal its true greatness!
Try this wine with veal chops with rosemary potatoes, wild duck with cherry sauce or saddle of venison with a side of sautéed vegetables and mashed potatoes. The wine will harmonise magnificently and set culinary highlights.
Domaine Lejeune, 1 Place de lEglise, 21630 Pommard, France