Julienas, with Saint Amour is the northern most Beaujolais Cru. Along with Moulin-a-Vent, Morgon, and Fleurie, Julienas enjoys name recognition that the other Crus have yet to establish in the United States. And like wines from those other communes, Julienas produces some wines that can improve with cellaring - both the Oxford Companion to Wine and Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book say a couple of years (2-3). I bet that the Michel Tete Julienas Cuvee Prestige could improve for longer than that, in certain vintages.
What about 2003 in Beaujolais? This was an incredibly hot year, and acid levels were down in the fruit, as in most wine regions. I know that good Cru Beaujolais can improve with cellaring, but this was a somewhat baked and low acid vintage - how would a wine from 2003 perform now in the summer of 2007?
Tete's Cuvee Prestige is reputed to be "aromatically backward in its youth." I have tasted this wine in each of the past few years and loved it. Made from old vines, it is deep and complex, yet beautifully expresses the floral and berry lightness of Beaujolais. I have never tasted an aged version of this wine. How would this entry from 2005 perform in its youth?
2003 Georges Duboeuf Julienas Prestige, (price unknown).
2005 Michel Tete Julienas Cuvee Prestige, $24 (Chambers Street Wines).
Anyway, this wine had a strong mineral streak early on, but the red cherries overcame their initial shyness and were only a little shy in the end. I like the edges of potting soil and cherry liquor that I get from this wine. But the fruit had not yet fully revealed itself. I would be curious to taste this wine again in a few years.