Domaine J-L & J-C Bersan
“Jean-Christophe has been particularly dynamic with this branch of Domaine Bersan, taking the vineyards organic and moving to hand harvesting. The old vine cuvées pay homage to Jean-Christophe’s grandfather, Louis Bersan who planted up much of their holdings 75 years ago. Each of the appellations exists in a non-oaked version, as well as the single vineyard or old vine versions, which are aged in older wood. Some whole bunches are used for the red wines.” Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy.
This domaine is based in St. Bris (where the sauvignon blancs taste like chablis) and the vines are all in the St. Bris, Chablis, Auxerre triangle (it would take 35 minutes to drive to all three places).
The Bersan wines are made in deep cellars created in the 11th and 12th centuries by the Templar Knights. The wines stay at 12C all year round! Even though much of the older vine whites are barrel aged in 228 and 600 litre barrels, (mostly older oak), the Chablis and St.Bris don’t taste like they have been in oak, except for a more complex textural element and a higher-quality "completeness".
These wines are deep and complex, biodynamic, made by this vineyard-obsessed father and son team They are utterly characterful clean and full of vitality.
2022 Bersan Bourgogne Aligote
RRP: $62 | Offer: $39
As my vigneron son likes to say, "gatorjuice"! This aligote really does show the difference that the aligoté doré (golden) variant (as opposed to the aligoté "vert" / "green") makes. The higher quality doré makes riper, richer and more complete wines albeit still with the signature green apple verve of the variety. This has a chablis-like bouquet with wet stones and a ripe generous impression (sometimes aligoté can be lean and mean!) with a complexing doughy / cheesy nuance and lemon pith finish. - Randall
2022 Bersan Bourgogne Cotes d'Auxerre Blanc 750ml Bottle
RRP: $73 | Offer: $38
One of the first '22's I've tasted from bottle and I'd pick this as chablis if I tasted it blind. It has a flinty, struck-rock, smoky and fresh herb nose with pear, honey-wax and citrus. It's lithe, well-rounded and balanced. This has no oak influence, but it is vibrant, juicy and has a very satisfying dry, mouth-watering finish. - Randall
2022 Bersan Bourgogne Cotes d'Auxerre Rouge 750ml Bottle
RRP: $73 | Offer: $44
A great harbinger for the 2022 vintage. These grapes are manually harvested and the fermentation includes 30% whole bunch. 12 months ageing takes place in small percentage of new barrels, the balance being older, then after 12 months the assemblage is aged for 4 months in old demi-muids - 600L.
The colour is bright, the nose gives dark cherry, raspberry and autumn undergrowth. The palate is round, full, enveloping, displaying a supple, fine velvety texture, with fresh, crunchy cranberry and strawberry fruit. The whole bunch / stems don't show and neither does the new oak, such is the completeness and "hidden" power of this "easy to drink" young Bourgogne.
NV Bersan Cremant de Bourgogne Brut
RRP: $79 | Offer: $49
This is the very best and most surprising Cremant I have ever tasted. It kills many Champagnes at twice the price! - Randall
I know that is a bold statement, but it is truly amazing. Not labeled as blanc de noir but it's a 100% pinot noir base (hence the pale brassy colour), fermented in barrels, aged for 3 years in the bottle and presents as a deep, concentrated and harmonious powerful wine. The mousse is is creamy, the acid level, textural grip and dosage are all in perfect harmony. There is some light floral honey-like alyssum aromas, red apple skin, brioche, biscuity and baked apple tart notes. The finish is long, the flavour hangs on and the ending is nicely dry.
This is from near Chablis and Champagne! "Caramel, toast, wood spice. The palate carries honeyed lemon with wood spice touches. It's citrusy with some creaminess around the edges." Georgina Hindle, Decanter
2021 Bersan Chablis
RRP: $92 | Offer: $55
This wine is aged on 100% fine lees 100% in stainless steel vats for 8 months. The plot is 2.5ha in the south of Chablis near Courgis, where the cool Kimmeridgian soil has a high blue clay content. This has lovely "cool-year" vibrancy and vitality with the signature "Bersan" density, mouth-watering soft acids, lime, lemongrass, honey-wax characters, with nice length and grip.
2021 Bersan Chablis 'Les Ouches'
RRP: $97 | Offer: $57
This wine is from a 1 ha plot (called Les Ouches, from the ancient word Houches or farmland) with 45yo vines, in the south of Chablis. It's aged on fine lees in old oak barrels for 10 months then in steel vats for three months.
It boasts ripe apple, high acid vitality, a lick of exotic ripe tropical fruit salad, some proving dough, lemon pith and gentle aromas of flowers and lime. The wine is well balanced, long, fruity, invigorating and has a nice saline finish.
2022 Bersan Chablis 1er Cru 'Montmains'
RRP: $129 | Offer: $79
Another "first" 2022 white Burgundy from this lovely ripe and very solid vintage. This has a wet river stone freshness with some damp moss, flinty chablis typicity and 1er Cru strength albeit not as rich and ripe as the 2020. It has a little nuance of danish pastry to amplify all the flinty, rocky saline sea-breeze characteristics. This is aged in old barrels (at the ambient cellar temperature of 12C). The old vines, organic vines, small yields and careful viticulture ensure that the wine carries well the old barrel ageing.
2020 Bersan Chablis Les Ouches
RRP: $81 | Offer: $49
This is a high-energy and beautifully textural organic Chablis from 70yo vines in the village of Préhy 10km from St. Bris in the southern sector of Chablis. The lower yields, precision hand-picking and long slow ferment have made something special. This is the “prestige” AC offering so at this price it’s an absolute silk-department bargain. It’s not obvious on tasting the wine, but for more flavour and textural complexity it’s aged in 40% old 228lt barrels. You can expect a beautifully elegant, cool, tight, dense and long wine with benchmark marine nuances and loads of personality behind a veil of discretion. "It's one of the most exotic and complex AC Chablis' I have had the pleasure to taste!" Randall.
2020 Bersan Chablis 1er Cru Montmains
RRP: $109 | Offer: $69
Hand-picked fruit is meticulously sorted and then crushed for a short but important maceration that adds texture and important particulate matter to aid fermentation and add extra life-giving and character-building lees. I’m sure there are other producers in Chablis who do this crushing (á la Domaine Roulot in Meursault and Beauregard in the Macon) but it’s not common as the berries need to be perfectly healthy, perfectly ripe and nicely concentrated. After maceration the ferment starts spontaneously and it lasts for around 2 months in the cool deep cellars. It’s a mix of mostly tank fermented wine with a little older-oak matured components. This is serious Chablis from a careful producer who does everything as naturally as possible but makes clean, precise wines of impressive mineral complexity, a "wild" opulence and great laser-beam length.
2020 Domaine Bersan Saint-Bris
RRP: $54 | Offer: $47
In Northern Burgundy, Saint Bris is the one appellation you can label as it's Burgundian location even though it's growing a white other than chardonnay! This sauvignon blanc is site has been organic for 12 years and is planted in limestone dominant clay soil. Spontaneous fermentation in tank, followed by 6 to 8 months on lees. The nose is mainly based on vine peach and limestone mineral. The palate is round and fresh with a slightly smoky finish.
2020 Bersan Irancy Rouge 'Cuvee Louis Bersan'
RRP: $80 | Offer: $65
“From old vines planted by Jean-Christophe’s grandfather. All in wood, two thirds 600 litres, 8% new wood, with 12 months in wood then six months in tank. Deliberately the most Bourguignon in style. Usual green reflections, while the bouquet offers an impeccable sense of balance. White flowers and acacia, the wood is just present but not over dominant. The wood also adds a tone, a little muscle to the finish, which has a pleasing crispness to match the weight of fruit." 5 Star wine (One of Jasper’s picks) 90 points. - Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
2020 Bersan Cotes D'Auxerre Blanc 'Louis Bersan'
RRP: $69 | Offer: $44
Being from very close to Chablis this is more lithe than a Cote d’Or Bourgogne. It bright and youthful and opens with fresh apple, preserved lemon, sea-spray and hints of spice and earthy aromas. It’s tight, cool and long, and would make the perfect fish or seafood platter white. It has impressive filigree and perfectly ripe fruit complexity for a Bourgogne and there is absolutely no rush to drink this wine anytime soon, although it’s very seductive!
2020 Bersan Irancy Bourgogne Rouge
RRP: $66 | Offer: $39
This is an true Burgundy bargain and a "village" (since 1998) level to boot! These Irancy vines (from6km south of Chablis) come from the steep ampheatre slopes hugging the village itself. The vineyards almost encircle the village, but the Bersan vines face the more desirable west aspect. This is all barrel aged and is dark-fruited, supple, clean as a whistle and beautifully filigreed with firm but balanced "ripe" tannins.