In our endless search for “value” in Burgundy, we are constantly looking for over-performing producers in so-called lesser appellations. The Côte Chalonnaise can be a treasure trove for value, but it requires finding wineries that can harness the true potential of these terroirs and avoid the pitfalls that are often found in these regions, usually wines that are often rustic and or somewhat simple and one-dimensional. With around twenty hectares spread across Mercurey, and a little bit of Rully as well, Domaine MIA has quickly emerged as one of the quality leaders in the region as well as one of the largest certified organic estates in the Côte Chalonnaise.
The domaine’s history began in 1860 with the planting of Clos La Marche, one of the most celebrated vineyards in the area. Previously known as Maison Louis Max, the winery now bears the name of the current generation Mia Subotic, who took the helm in 2020 with a goal of remaking this historic estate. With the crucial contributions of Alain Charleux who cares for the vineyards, and consulting winemaker, David Duband, Mia is writing a new chapter in the domaine, infusing it with her passion and commitment. Top of mind are the health of the vineyard ecosystem and the recognition that the soils are the source of energy from which the vine draws its nutrients and creates the complex alchemy of colors, aromas and flavors from each of the individual climats. To that end, Domaine Mia is certified Organic via Ecocert and also incorporate some Biodynamic practices in the vineyards as well.
The inclusion of David Duband as consulting winemaker was an interesting choice as his evolution as a winemaker in many ways displays a somewhat parallel and transformative path as Mia is endeavoring to achieve. Duband’s own wines have evolved from a bigger, more modern, oak-driven style, to a refined, elegant and transparent touch with an emphasis on Natural farming as well. In describing the appeal of working with Domaine Mia, David Duband explained: “It was a real challenge for me to vinify other terroirs than the Côte de Nuits and a great motivation to apply my winemaking method to these other appellations.” For Domaine Mia, this means not only farming meticulously, but also picking by hand for freshness and terroir transparency, using a judicious level of new oak, and incorporating some whole cluster (~30-50%) on the red side to add complexity and energy to the wines.
The Domaine Mia range starts with Bourgogne Blanc and Rouge, including a cuvée of Sans Souffre Rouge. While Mercurey is generally known more for red wines, Mia also makes some delicious, clean, fresh and bright whites from the generally cooler, limestone-rich terroirs of Les Caudroyes and Les Rochelles, as well as a Rully Blanc from “Les Plantenays”. On the red side, their “Flagship” wine of course is probably their 3.48 Ha Monopole Mercurey Rouge Clos La Marche which includes a majority of vines planted around 1960. There is also a Mercurey Villages from Caudroyes as well as a small amount of 1er Cru from the southeast facing “Les Vasées”. Average vine age is fairly high, with a good percentage over 40 years. Replanting is done conservatively and only when necessary.
In sum, the Mia wines perform well above their respective appellations and price points, and we are excited to bring some of these enlightened Côte Chalonnaise examples to the market. As Allen Meadows of Burghound said of the early releases, “This is quality Mercurey, and one to check out”. We couldn’t agree more!