2016 Stephane Aviron Beaujolais
Most 2016 Beaujolais are built along more classical lines, emphasizing lively, sharply delineated red fruit, floral and spice qualities and offering succulent early drinkability. Readers whose idea of great Beaujolais is defined by years like 2014 and 2013 (both outstanding vintages) are going to find plenty to like in the 2016s. Unfortunately, severe hail events in some of the region’s best vineyards cut production for many producers, often dramatically. JOSH ARYNOLDS, Vinous
It’s amazing how distinctive and consistent is the style and vineyard character of each of these cask-matured Beaujolais. As a group, these wines offer excellent value even by the high standards of price-quality rapport that prevail among top Beaujolais growers. DAVID SCHILDKNECHT, The Wine Advocate
Made in the Burgundian fashion, Aviron’s wines have earned a reputation for ageworthiness and, in my experience, really demand the wait. At the very least, bottles of his Crus that are less than three years old should get a little air time in a decanter before serving. JOSH RAYNOLDS, Vinous
I don’t think the wines of Stephane Aviron will need too much of an introduction to our customers as we have been trying to share the Beauj love for years now. The project is run by old uni buddies Stephane Aviron and Nicolas Potel. For many years they were labelled as Potel-Aviron but to separate the two brands out, and also as Stephane makes the wines, in recent years they have switched simply to Stephane Aviron. The wines however have remained unchanged and much like the Domaine de Bellene wines Nic makes they are uncompromising and focused first and foremost on vineyard and vintage expression.
With the rise and rise of the modern Beaujolais stars many producers have become very well known here and abroad and these wines sit easily among them. Both Stephane and Nic set out with the goal to produce wines of only the highest quality eschewing the techniques utilised for far too long in the region which resulted in uninteresting wines to appeal to a certain market and gave rise to the dreaded nouveau. Instead they brought back the wine making of old, what Raynolds refers to as “Burgundian fashion” to bring back the quality that was once the hallmark of the region. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that the bevvy of brilliant, affordable, expressive and exciting Beaujolais we have access to today is due to the hard work of vignerons like these two.
If you aren’t familiar with the wines then I urge you to get on board the Beauj train and starting the journey with these delicious, engaging, fruitful wines is a great place to begin. I am still always shocked at the quality versus the hip pocket damage these wines consistently deliver and with a super vintage like 2016 it is a no brainer. As is usually the case these wines arrive before there is any reviews for them but they will come and we can safely predict, based on their track record, they will be glowing.
As is out habit with these we are offering them at a very sharp dozen price to share the love, as if they weren’t already cheap enough for wines this good.