Charme is a slightly tongue in cheek reference to one of Dirk Niepoort's favorite Burgundy Grand Cru vineyard site in the village of Gevrey-Chambertin. The idea here is the wine is more reminiscent of a great red Burgundy as opposed to a ringer for the Grand Cru. But that is how Dirk rolls and it's one of the reason's why I like him, and why his marketing and winemaking has been so successful.
Charme is all about elegance and balance, achieved by taking special attention to the smallest details during the entire wine-making process. Made in traditional stone lagares with 100% grape stems. The grapes were lightly crushed with 100% stems into granite Lagares where they were foot trodden. Charme initially undergoes fermentation in lagar and then moves on to barrel, where it concludes the process. Minimal racking and aging in French oak barrels for 15 to 19 months, completes the process.
Grapes: A field blend mostly Tinta Roriz & Touriga Franca
Soil: Schist hard rock terraces
Vine age: 70-100 year-old vines
Vinification: Lagares foot tread, whole cluster
Maturation: 15 months in seasoned French barriques
93+ pts Mark Squires, Robert Parker The 2015 Charme is a field blend, particularly Tinta Roriz and Touriga Franca, aged for 15 months in used French barriques. It comes in at 13.6% alcohol. This is Niepoort's occasionally quixotic tribute to Burgundy. This is a good vintage for it, though. Elegant and bright, with fine flavor and texture, this is bursting with flavor. There are fresh raspberries everywhere, the tension on the finish easily lifting the fruit. It finishes with another wave of flavor, exuberant in its youth. This is, as always, understated in some ways, too, showing fine mid-palate finesse. This is probably my favorite vintage of this brand in awhile. It may be entitled to an uptick if it develops well. It may do better in terms of aging than suggested, as Niepoort hopes, but let's take that in stages. In the meanwhile, it should be approachable young, but give it a couple of years if you can.