Antoine Sunier, Regnie, 2020

$29.99
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Antoine didn't immediately follow his older brother Julien into the wine trade, but in 2012 he finally quit his 'day job' to study viticulture full time, debuting two wines in 2014, one from Régnié and one from Morgon. This Régnié comes from around 2 hectares in Les Forchets and Le Potet, 45 year-old vines. Traditional carbonic fermentation, then aged 7-8 months in 80-90% used Burgundy barrels with the rest in concrete, unfined, unfiltered, only a little SO2 at bottling.

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Although born and raised in Dijon, the beating heart of Burgundy, Antoine Sunier did not come from a winemaking family. But now he and his brother Julien are two of Beaujolais’ most noteworthy young vignerons...and it’s all thanks to the hair on Christophe Roumier’s head.

Madame Sunier worked in Dijon as a hairstylist to some of the wine world’s most illustrious names; Julien, the eldest Sunier brother, used those connections to garner apprenticeships before founding his own domaine in Beaujolais. A typical younger brother, Antoine chose a career path diametrically opposed to his brother’s, in a telecommunications firm.

But wine beckoned, and Antoine found himself spending all of his free time at Julien’s, helping out at harvest, working in the cellar and getting to know the unique terroir of Beaujolais. In 2012, he took the plunge and started enology school; he capped off his studies with an internship with Jean Claude Lapalu, a superstar of natural Beaujolais.

Antoine's focus is on the cru of Régnié, though he makes a powerful and dark-fruited Morgon from a small plot. His Régnié cuvées are elegant and concentrated; they practically glow with minerality, a product of old-vines planted on the region’s ample pink granite. He works exclusively with native yeasts and adds just a touch of sulfur at bottling.

Antoine’s wines have a fine tannic structure, delicate but unmistakable. They’re defined by a lively, plush fruit and an undeniable spiciness, along with that alluring mineral grip. They bear a distant relation to his brother’s wines, including a dedication to organic farming and lots of exuberant red fruit, but Antoine’s wines are perhaps a touch more serious: more structure, more minerality, more age-worthiness.

Antoine Sunier is a name to watch out for; just as his brother, he’s established himself as a singular winemaker in Beaujolais, crafting wines of precision from fastidiously farmed grapes.

Professional Reviews

Antonio Galloni

AG 92
"Glistening ruby. Fresh red and blue fruits, violet and baking spices on the highly perfumed nose. Juicy and gently chewy in texture, offering sappy cherry and boysenberry flavors that flesh out and turn sweeter through the mid-palate. Fine-grained tannins add grip to a long, spicy finish that features repeating florality and a sneaky hint of gaminess." -Vinous

Robert Parker

RP 91
"Bursting with aromas of sweet berry fruit, plums, warm spices and vanilla pod, the 2020 Régnié is medium to full-bodied, lively and charming, with melting tannins and a sapid finish. Antoine Sunier launched his domaine with the 2014 vintage. Organic farming, gentle macerations for some eight to 15 days and élevage emphasizing used Burgundy barrels are the rudiments of his approach, which bears comparison with that favored by his older brother Julien (who established his eponymous domaine six years before Antoine). On this visit, Sunier told me he installed a new refrigerating system to help retain fresh fruit flavors in warmer vintages. The 2019s have turned out nicely for the most part, though I wasn't convinced his Régnié lieu-dit Montmerond had gained from receiving a longer élevage." -Robert Parker

What importer Polaner Selections has to say about this wine...

VINEYARD
45 year old vines from the lieu-dits of Les Forchets, le Potet, Montmerond. 350 meters in altitude.
SOIL
Granite, 80% of area has little topsoil and is very rocky.
VITICULTURE
In organic conversion
VINIFICATION
Gravity flow to tanks, Indigenous yeast fermentations at low temperatures, to preserve fresh fruit flavors and a delicate tannic structure. Whole cluster fermentation for 8-15 days, horizontal pressing, manual racking for elevage.
AGING
Aged 8 months on the lees in 90% neutral burgundy barrels and 20% concrete tanks. Bottled with no fining or filtration. Total sulfur = 15 mg/l, Free sulfur = 0 (undectable)

Details

  • Grape Variety

    Gamay

  • Vintage

    2020

  • Size

    750ml

  • Farming Practice

    Organic

  • Sweetness

    Dry

  • Body

    Medium Bodied

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