行事低調的Jasper Morris MW，就像他傾情的布爾岡葡萄酒一樣，優雅樸素。酒評像是細說故事，將布爾岡葡萄酒如詩般刻畫。對Pinot Noir的鍾愛，更帶他遊歷四方，美國、新西蘭等的新興產區。早前於Altaya Wines的布爾岡品酒活動中再遇這位平易近人的葡萄酒大師，我們再次談到布爾岡的近況。
Jasper Morris MW is always elegant, gentlemen like the wine he loves, Bourgogne. He tells stories about the wine, giving you a picture of his thoughts about this sought-after region instead of just ‘criticizing’. He likes Pinot Noir and brings him to USA, New Zealand to discover new Pinot regions. Earlier we meet this Bourgogne master in the exciting events by Altaya Wines, we taste, we talk about Bourgogne.
Jasper Morris的著作當中，以9年前出版的Inside Burgundy最讓人回味。Jasper早於1985已取得Master of Wine的榮銜，回憶當年，布爾岡的葡萄酒還未像現在如此受歡迎，而且當時不少葡萄酒都是出自大酒莊。葡萄農主要以種植葡萄為主，然後賣給酒商、大酒莊釀酒。隨著布爾岡葡萄酒在全世界大熱，需求也越來越高，同時不少葡萄農，尤其是新一代的接班人都開始釀起酒來，也有一些釀酒師在當地跟葡萄農合作，釀造自己品牌的葡萄酒，例如Nicolas Potel、Benjamin Leroux等等。現居於布爾岡的Jasper正是從過去三十年目睹這些轉變。「對於布爾岡來說，這是黃金時代，也讓布爾岡變得複雜起來，先不說價格的升勢。那些年當我考Master of Wine時，布爾岡簡單得多，當然要掌握不同村莊、不同Cru、Climat還是需要花上一番功夫。但現在同一個Climat可能有上十款不同釀酒師或酒莊的酒款，風格也更不同，讓人眼花撩亂！」但Jasper還是認為布爾岡的葡萄酒還不是那麼難於理解。酒款雖多，但只要從同一條村莊的風土學起，可以簡單應用到其他村莊！其實波爾多不也是一樣嗎？只是布爾岡小小的產區，卻擁有那麼多不一樣的風土及釀酒師，抱著不同的理念去釀酒。
Among his books and publications, Inside Burgundy, which was published 9 years ago, is many winelovers’ favourite. Crowned the Master of Wine since 1985, he remembers Bourgogne wine has never been as popular as this decades globally. At that time, production was dominated by big négociants and large domaines. With the emerging world’s market, many of the wine growers, especially the new generations, has started to make their own wines to sell. There are also winemakers who collaborate with growers for small projects like Nicolas Potel or Benjamin Leroux…etc. Living in Bourgogne for the past 30 years, Jasper has witnessed all these changes, “this is a golden era for Bourgogne, and also make it more complicated. Let’s not talk about the prices first, when I was studying the Master of Wine, it was far more simple with only a few major producers and was easier to manage the consistent styles of different villages, cru and climats. Nowadays, a single climats could show you various producers who share different philosophy in their wines. It becomes more complicated!” After all, Jasper still believes it is not that difficult to learn about Bourgogne wines. You just have to start studying village by village and understand the core concept which could apply to different regions in Bourgogne. Isn’t it like Bordeaux? Only Bourgogne is much smaller in size and accommodated with so many winemakers and terroirs.
“In Bourgogne, attentions to every single detail is much more important than to upgrade your equipments!”
踏入2000年，不單市場的轉變，布爾岡的氣候也不斷轉變。尤其2010-2017，布爾岡可說是經歷了像過山車一樣的轉變！Jasper迷上布爾岡，是因為一瓶La Tâche 1966，跟妻子邂逅也是因酒結緣。長居於布爾岡，讓Jasper更能了解每年的氣候轉變。2012、13、14可以算是布爾岡的災難，尤其對於南方的Côte de Beaune而言，冰雹讓葡萄園損失慘重。但優秀的釀酒師會釀出最好的葡萄酒，只是產量極其低。2015年收成回復正常，但2016又受到霜害的侵襲，產量再次跌到谷底。「盡管如此，這些產量極低的年份卻有不少優秀的葡萄酒！大家只需要花點耐性挑選，如果你仍然能買得到！2017年不單產量上收復失地，品質上整體也是非常優秀。」我們年頭也品評了不少2017年的布爾岡新酒，甚至是酒桶中的樣品酒，絕對認同Jasper的看法。
非常幸運地，今年年頭我們往新西蘭Central Otago去了解當地最著名的Pinot Noir發展時，Jasper也被邀作講者嘉賓，將他對當地Pinot Noir的發展跟來賓分享。Jasper對這些新的Pinot Noir產區也顯得非常雀躍，認為要找到適合的風土種植釀造Pinot Noir葡萄酒十分難得，而最重要是了解當地的風土，展現出最理想的風格，而不是模仿布爾岡。不知是否愛酒人都容易聚集起來，愛布爾岡的朋友也經常千里相遇，為最愛的Pinot Noir葡萄乾杯！
Large vs Small Producers
Many French wine regions has taken much evolution especially in winemaking technology. But in Bourgogne, people are less excited with new technology, and keep on with the traditions, open top fermentation tanks, slow and vigorous sorting tables…etc. Large domaines are modernized to bring up efficiency. But small producers still make outstanding wines by sticking to traditions. Jasper said, “Bourgogne is different to other regions. Small vineyards does not need much machinery or technology, they only need attention to every single details. Understanding the terroir of different parcel, climats is more important, especially to make the right decisions during harvest. Details like grapes sorting, decisions in winemaking, extractions, use of oak…etc. Attention to details is even more important than to upgrade the equipments.” New technology helps winemakers to make better decisions, like the weather forecasts, but experience is as important in the field.
Not only the market changes after entering the 2000s era, the weather changes as well! During 2010-2017, Bourgogne has experienced the greatest rally that a wine region usually have. Jasper fell for Bourgogne because of a bottle of 1966 La Tâche and met his wife because of wine. Living in Bourgogne, he understands the changes of climate in recent vintages. 2012, 13, 14 had been disastrous for Bourgogne especially in the Côte de Beaune because of the hailstorm. In fact, the small crops did not mean bad wines, talented winemakers still made beautiful wines but in small quantities. 2015 has been back in normal but the spring frost in 2016 has brought another nightmare to Bourgogne with extremely small harvest. “Even the harvest was small, the wines are great! If you could still be able to buy some, pick the best producers patiently! 2017 is generous not only in quantity, but also in quality, I would say good to very good vintage for Bourgogne.” We did a 2017 tasting earlier this year with some barrel samples shipped from Bourgogne. Our panel has the same view as Jasper.
We are lucky to meet Jasper again after this interview when we went to Central Otago, New Zealand in the early year. The Bourgogne master was invited as a guest speaker, sharing his view on the development as another important Pinot Noir region of the world. Jasper feels so exciting about new Pinot region like Central Otago and commented that it was not easy to find great terroir for Pinot Noir. In order to make the best wines, local winemakers should focus on to reveal the best of the terroirs instead to imitate Bourgogne. We cheered for the great variety of Pinot Noir, and that was how people who loves wines met up again on the other end of the earth, wine connects!
2012, 13, 14 Côte d’Or比Côte de Beaune幸運，沒太受冰雹影響太多，Vosne Romanée村莊有不少優秀的葡萄酒。
In Côte d’Or, 2012, 13 and 14 vintage is less disastrous comparing to Côte de Beaune because of the hailstorm. Vosne Romanée produces some great wines from the top climats.
2017年不單量多，品質也很好，Domaine Faiveley 的「酒花」嚐起來非常具潛力。
2017 vintage is not only generous in volume, quality is also superior! The barrel samples of Domaine Faiveley really show huge potential.