Esprit Leflaive

Bourgogne, France


At the crossroad of fabulous terroirs from Burgundy, with an expertise in Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Esprit Leflaive ventures beyond the Côte de Beaune and the Mâconnais, to Chablis and the Côte de Nuits, to explore the wider Burgundy. When Pierre Vincent started at Domaine Leflaive with the 2017 vintage, he quickly realized, while working with some of the best Chardonnay vineyards in the world, his months of September and October felt like they were missing something. After a discussion with Brice de La Morandière, they agreed to develop a small selection of wines beginning with the 2018 vintage. Esprit Leflaive was born. Using their contacts throughout Bourgogne, Pierre and Brice handpicked a few vineyards where they took over the management of vineyard activities all the way to bottling. This haute- couture selection is certified organic and produced in small quantities.

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There are few places blessed with so much history and such geography. Since the Middle Ages, Burgundy has cultivated grapes like no other region. The know-how of the monks has passed through the centuries, evangelizing each village of a vineyard that has always remained on a human scale. Today, the total Burgundy vineyard covers less than 30,000 ha, barely 4% of French vineyards as a whole. Burgundy’s wines have acquired a simple and unique reputation: they are the best Chardonnays and Pinots Noirs in the world. Each appellation comes from a specific place, a parcel of vines often of modest size: these famous “Climats” form the basis of the Burgundy model. The diversity of Burgundy’s wines is also found in its 84 appellations, from the Grands Crus at the top of the pyramid through the Premiers Crus and the Villages to the regional AOCs

More than a classification or a nomenclature, these are names that amateurs dream about: Gevrey-Chambertin, Vougeot, Corton, Meursault, or even, in the heart of the Côte de Beaune, Puligny-Montrachet, where the Leflaive family has been established since 1717

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With the iconic Domaine Leflaive representing the premier name in the production of exclusively white Burgundy centered with the two winery operations – the historic domaine in Puligny-Montrachet and the estate in the Maçonnais for nearly 20 years, it is easy to think they would have their hands more than full. But looking at opportunities in the vast array of unique appellations in the Burgundy region from Chablis in the north, the Côte d’Or, and south to the Maçonnais, they have partnered with their winemaker and general manager, Pierre Vincent, to create an “haute-couture” micro-négociant operation sourcing fruit from organic/biodynamic (or in conversion) vineyard sites of top quality. Now in its 3rd release, the 2020 vintage of this project is being offered in extremely limited quantities with a range of whites and reds from village up to Grand Cru. Given Pierre’s wealth of experience in expressing the nuances of both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir from the best terroirs in the region, this is an exciting chance to see unique climats showcased in the inimitable spirit of the Leflaive style.

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