Domaine Stéphane Magnien holds 11 acres in total. To give you a visual representation, this is almost the amount of land that comprises the entirety of the Detroit Institute of Arts campus — one block bordered by John R, Kirby, and Farnsworth streets, and Woodward Avenue. Clearly not that much in agricultural terms. But for Stéphane Magnien, it’s all about the location. Those 11 acres are in some of the most prestigious climats in the world, including Grand Cru plots in Charmes-Chambertin and Clos Saint-Denis.
The house and cellar are in the village of Morey-Saint-Denis, the center of the estates holdings, and date back to the 18th Century. Today, it is fourth-generation winemaker Stéphane Magnien that has assumed the mantle of producing transparent and elegant wines that speak of place. Stéphane took over the estate in 2008 but it was his father, Jean-Paul Magnien, that was the first to bottle the wines under the family name. Indeed, we still have a few bottles from the spectacular 2005 vintage when the domaine’s labels held both the father’s and the son’s names.
Vineyard work at the domaine is carried out by hand and Stéphane takes pride in the fact that their plots have never been subjected to any herbicide harmful to the soil, allowing beneficial organisms to thrive. Strict green harvesting helps to control yields and maintain concentration. The grapes are meticulously sorted at harvest time. Winemaking is traditional and minimal-intervention, with fermentation using wild yeast in stainless steel tanks. In general, aging is done for 12 months in barrels (10% new oak) and then 2 to 3 months of aging in stainless steel tanks. Everything at the domaine is done with the objective of producing wines with aromatic concentration, character of the appellation, elegance, freshness, and finesse.
All prices based on the purchase of a 6-pack (mix and match)
~$59 Morey-Saint-Denis “Vieilles Vignes”
100% Pinot Noir from the “Clos Slon” and “Cognes” climats totalling 1.1 acres. The vines from these two parcels are located on clay/limestone soils and planted in 1950 and 1970. Annual production is 2,500 bottles.
~$62 Chambolle-Musigny “Vieilles Vignes”
100% Pinot Noir from vines planted between 1902 and 1903 from a 0.6 acre plot in the vineyard Les Athets. The plot is located east of the village on stony subsoil. Annual production is 1,400 bottles.
~$89 “Les Sentiers” (Chambolle-Musigny Premier Cru)
$207 1.5 Liter Magnum
100% Pinot Noir from a one acre plot located adjacent to the Grand Cru Bonnes-Mares. The plot is characterized by deep clay and limestone soils planted in 1927 and 1980. Annual production is 2,000 bottles.
~$89 “Les Faconnieres” (Morey-Saint-Denis Premier Cru)
100% Pinot Noir from a 1.4 acre parcel of old vines planted in 1952 and 2002 in the Premier Cru of Les Faconnières, one of the best situated climats in Morey-Saint-Denis, located beneath the Grand Cru of Clos de la Roche and between the Premiers Crus of Les Millandes and Les Charrières. Annual production is 3,200 bottles.
$171 Clos Saint-Denis (Grand Cru)
100% Pinot Noir from 0.8 acres in the center of Clos-Saint-Denis. The limestone shelf of this plot planted in 1971 and 1973 produces smaller berries and subsequently higher concentration. Annual production is 1,550 bottles.
$180 Charmes-Chambertin (Grand Cru)
100% Pinot Noir from 0.5 acres planted in 1980 and 1986. The shallow soil of the plot is characterized by a substrate of gravel and yellow clay. Annual production is 900 bottles.