The 2009 Les Charmes Macon-Lugny Chardonnay is sourced from a single vineyard (the Les Charmes vineyard) in the Maconnais region in south Burgundy, France. The wine is produced by Cave de Lugny, which is a cooperative of 250 winegrowers who produce about half of the wine made in Maconnais. The vineyard where the Les Charmes grapes were grown is planted with Musk Chardonnay as well as the usual Chardonnay vines. Musk Chardonnay is a clone and has a nose much closer to the Muscat grape than the Chardonnay grape. The wine is aged “on lees” (all the grape residue and dead yeast are left in the vat, they impart structure and a nutty flavor) for 12 months, this is an unoaked Chardonnay. The alcohol content is 13%.
The color is a soft shiny golden yellow. The nose is pretty, green apple, lemon chiffon, a little melon and canned pears in light syrup. There is a creamy mouthfeel, it tastes of green apples, salted cashews, tangerine and peach. The mid palate adds a nice counter-point of dusty minerality and dried apricot. This Chardonnay has good length and balanced acidity and the finish is lingers on for quite some time.
The Les Charmes Macon-Lugny Chardonnay is a solid, interesting, well made Chardonnay and well priced at somewhere between $10 and $15 (the pricing on the internet was all over the place). Often French wine labels are confusing to American wine drinkers, the Les Charmes has a French style label, but most of it is in English, explaining everything a typical American Chardonnay drinker would need to know. The bottle is also a screw-cap, so while this is not your typical Burgundian wine label, the Chardonnay in the bottle is very French and very good.