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    My Today



    All of the tasting notes of the wine critic mentioned above in tastingbook, comes from press releases from wine importers and vineyards, or directly from the critic and can also be found on the critic’s own website, which can be easily accessed by clicking on the link above.





    My Yesterday

    Here are a sampling of the reviews from the nearly 100,000 wine database of Burghound.com, from a selection of grands cruspremiers crusvillagesand regional.  For more information, visit www.burghound.com


    Domaine de la Romanée-Conti  2015


    Grand Cru Red 750 ml

    Score: 99+

    Tasted: Jan 15, 2018

    Drink: +/2040+

    Issue: 69

    Producer note: Co-director Aubert de Villaine described the 2016 growing season as "one that did not start well as the winter was too warm with no vineyard cleansing deep frosts to kill various pests taking refuge in the soil. The predictable result of the warmer and wetter than normal spring was a precocious bud break. To provide an idea of just how wet it was, 516 mm of rain fell in Vosne between January 1st and the end of May, which would be the most ever recorded since 1910, which was the rainiest year ever in Burgundy. [There was basically no harvest in 1910 and the cellars flooded to the point that barrels were floating in the streets!] There were very few days without rain and it was very difficult to organize the vineyard treatments as conditions made it all-but-impossible to enter the vineyards with machinery. This was a critical period because some 35 cycles of the redoubtable vineyard enemy mildew were reported, which is the most we have ever seen. Again, to provide perspective, normally we have only one cycle and in certain vintages, such as 2015, none at all. As if this weren't bad enough, at the end of April the North Wind cleared the skies of protecting clouds, the temperatures fell rapidly to zero and we woke to find our vines in Montrachet, Bâtard-Montrachet, Echézeaux and Grands Echézeaux badly burned by frost. Thankfully our other vineyards were basically untouched so we were lucky compared to many vignerons in other communes. The mildew remained relentless and despite the unceasing efforts of our vineyard workers, and our unwavering commitment to our biodynamic farming principles, we did suffer some losses because of it. Not surprisingly, all the wet weather and mildew weren't propitious for the unusually extended flowering that lasted from the 9th to the 25th of June. This engendered quite a bit of shatter which is good for quality but at the cost of reducing yields still further. This is what we dealt with until about the 15th of July and then, as if by divine providence, the weather changed for the better and would continue as such until the harvest. We were exceptionally fortunate in that these clement conditions essentially allowed the vines to recover from the spring and early summer challenges and bring the fruit to an excellent level of ripeness. We chose to begin picking on the 22nd of September with our parcels in Corton which are always the first to mature. Then on the 23rd and 24th we picked the Richebourg, La Tâche on the 24th and 25th, Romanée Conti on the 25th, Romanée St. Vivant on the 27th and 28th and finished on the 29th in only one day with our 8.25 ha of Echézeaux and Grands Echézeaux as neither had much fruit to harvest. In fact losses in those two vineyards alone were about 90% compared to a normal vintage! On the plus side, there was almost no sorting required as the fruit was exceptionally clean with excellent maturity levels and perhaps just as importantly the ripeness levels were largely uniform. The skins were thick and there was a high incidence of shot berries that just added to the density of the musts. We used on average 70% whole clusters during a total cuvaison that lasted about 20 days. In the end it was almost as though we had two growing seasons in one in that the first part was genuinely terrible and exhausting and frankly we were dispirited and without much hope. By contrast the second, and most important, was tranquil and calm and left us happy with the results. Speaking of which, I can observe that each time I taste the 2016s I am surprised by how they keep improving month by month. I am honestly surprised by how good the wines are as I certainly didn't expect this level of quality based on the difficulties of the growing season. They aren't as powerful as the 2015s but they have an extraordinarily good level of finesse and terroir transparency. And the Echézeaux may be the best that we have ever made. While I am of the view that each vintage is necessarily unique, if I had to choose another recent year to compare with 2016, I might suggest 2012." With respect to the now in-bottle 2015s, de Villaine added that "the year gave us perhaps the best growing season that I have ever seen together with the best fruit that I have ever seen. 1966 and 1999 might rival it but either way, it is a spectacular vintage." De Villaine also noted that as was the case in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, there will be no Vosne "1er" cuvée Duvault-Blochet in 2016; lastly, the 2015s revisited below, were bottled between February and April 2017. I would observe that while the Domaine's 2016 are genuinely wonderful wines, and particularly so for their refinement, they simply cannot match the magnificent quality of their 2015s. Beg, borrow or steal but do yourself a favor and find a few bottles for your cellars. (Wilson & Daniels, www.wilsondaniels.com, CA, USA; John Armit Wines, www.armit.co.uk, Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, Corney & Barrow, www.corneyandbarrow.com, Justerini & Brooks, www.justerinis.com and Planet Wines, www.planetofwine.com, all UK).

    Tasting note: Sometimes, try as I might, words fail to communicate adequately those few transcendent experiences where a wine is just so amazing that it's impossible to capture it. The 2015 Romanée-Conti would be one of those experiences so you will simply have to accept the limitations of the written word. The breathtakingly beautiful nose is restrained to the point of being almost mute yet aggressive agitation eventually reveals an exotically broad-range of highly perfumed floral, spice, tea and incense-like nuances. The opulently textured, concentrated and equally mineral-driven flavors accentuate the perfumed character of the nose as the inner mouth perfume just adds to the what is roughly akin to an sensorial assault, all wrapped in a finish that lasted for seemingly several days as I had no trouble recalling it over the next 48 hours. If there's any imperfection that I could detect, there is a hint of warmth but otherwise, this is pretty close to perfect. The word spectacular comes to mind but then again so does brilliant, fabulous and splendid. You get the idea - pretty damn remarkable.


    Domaine Coche-Dury 2014


    Grand Cru White 750 ml

    Score: 98

    Tasted: Jun 11, 2017

    Drink: 2029+

    Issue: 67


    Note: from a .67 ha parcel from Le Charlemagne in Aloxe-Corton

    Producer note: Jean-François Coche's son Raphaël, who has largely taken over the day-to-day responsibilities of the domaine, described 2014 as "yet another growing season where the hail really reduced the quantities. Moreover there was enough disease pressure at different times that it was absolutely necessary to always be in your vineyards. We chose to begin picking on the 10th of September and brought in ripe and mostly clean fruit that didn't require much sorting. The quantities though were sufficiently low that we did buy in some fruit to augment our production. As to the wines, I find them very surprising in the sense that they were initially disappointing but as the élevage progressed they changed radically and in a positive direction. One of the other aspects that I find interesting is that they are super fresh yet borderline tannic which I attribute to the fact that the fruit had such thick skins. As such I think they're going to age particularly well." I tasted 3 different cuvées of Meursault and while the vineyard for each is not cited on the label, I have put the information in parentheses. As to the quality, the 2014s are among the best wines, when taken as a group, that I have seen from Coche and as fans of the domaine already know, that is saying something! (Kermit Lynch, www.kermitlynch.com, CA, USA; Justerini & Brooks, www.justerinis.com and Tanners Wine, www.tanners-wines.co.uk, both UK).

    Tasting note: This is aromatically all but mute and it required very aggressive swirling to gradually coax the grudgingly nose of wood, mineral reduction, petrol, green apple, white rose and spice elements to reveal themselves. In the same vein as the nose, the dense and well-muscled broad-shouldered flavors are very, very tightly wound while delivering an abundance of minerality on the massively persistent finish. This potentially ranks as the wine of the vintage and that is no small statement given just how good the best 2014 whites are. With all of those justifiably merited compliments though, note well that this masterpiece in the making will not only age effortlessly for years to come, it's going to need time and I wouldn't even think about touching a bottle for at least a decade. In a word, brilliant.



    Domaine Billaud-Simon  2001

    Chablis - Les Clos

    Grand Cru White 750 ml

    Score: 90

    Tasted: Oct 01, 2003

    Drink: 2007-12

    Issue: 12

    Producer note: I met with Bernard Billaud who commented that neither 2000 nor 2001 were ideal at harvest time. He went on to explain that in his view, heat brings sugar but it is light that brings finesse and both vintages could have used a bit more of one or the other. Billaud surprisingly describes 2001 as producing average yields and wines that are "good but fragile and without the structure for long aging." He further explained that he was worried about the vintage at the beginning but that the slow malos have brought harmony plus enough structure and balance that it should be an above average, if not necessarily great, vintage. Interestingly, Billaud believes that 1991 is the best vintage parallel because they too were a bit thin at first but with age, put on weight. By contrast, Billaud describes 2000 as a much more structured and classically styled vintage that should age well but one that has sufficient fat to be approachable young. While he likes the 2000 vintage and is of the view that 2000 is certainly superior to 2001, he does not claim greatness for it either. Interestingly, Billaud went on to say that while 2000 is clearly better at the Petit Chablis and Chablis levels, it is only marginally better at the premier and grand cru levels. There is a large, modern, state-of-the-art cuvérie and for the 2001 vintage, Billaud proudly showed me the new conveyor belt system which replaces the old pumps to move fruit to the presses. The grapes at this 20 ha domaine are harvested by hand and machine though Billaud takes pains to point out that all of the premiers and grands crus are harvested exclusively by hand. After a relatively long, low temperature débourbage (though Billaud said that he extended the period even longer in 2001 because he was worried about the quality of the lees), fermentation takes place in tank (though a few cuvées are partially vinified in cask though none are new) with minimal bâtonnage over the 18 month élevage period; the élevage itself is also largely in steel tanks but a few of the cuvées (so noted below) see wood. The wines are then bottled after a light fining and filtration. Note: Billaud-Simon has 4 grands crus but neither the Blanchots nor the Preuses had yet finished their malos at the time of my July visit. (Langdon Shiverick Inc., Ohio, USA).

    Tasting note: Bigger and richer than the Vaudésir with beautifully intense and nicely pure aromas that have less obvious sweetness to them. The flavors are thick, indeed almost chewy in texture with a wet stones and intense minerality character to them and this has a fine, long, persistent finish. This is very good if not exceptional for the vintage and if offers excellent delineation. It should repay 4 to 6 years of cellar time.


    Domaine Henri Boillot 2015


    Villages Red 750 ml

    Score: 91

    Tasted: Apr 15, 2017

    Drink: 2021+

    Issue: 66

    Outstanding Top value

    Note: from declassified Clos de la Rougeotte

    Producer note: Henri Boillot's son Guillaume is now overseeing the production of the reds for both the Maison (see immediately below) and Domaine operations. The younger Boillot, who is already displaying an unusually sure touch for someone so young, described 2015 as a "vintage that was easy to manage as we made only six treatments that entire season as opposed to the 9 to 15 we usually make. We chose to begin picking the whites on the 26th of August and then picked the reds from the 1st to the 7th of September. The fruit was strikingly clean and quite ripe yet not overly so as we are very conscious of the acid levels in our wines. The potential alcohols were excellent and we chaptalized nothing. With the exception of the Clos de Vougeot where I chose to use 30% whole clusters, I did my normal vinification that lasted from 15 to 20 days with no punch downs at all. The skins were so thick and there was so little juice in the berries that it would have been easy to over extract the structural elements in the fruit. In fact, to give you an idea we actually had trouble crushing the fruit. The absence of juice in the berries contributed greatly to the low yields we obtained and while it's hard to believe, we actually realized lower volumes in 2015 than we did in 2014 even with the hail damage! Overall, 2015 produced ripe but balanced reds that should age well over the medium-term though a few may surprise people with how well they last." This domaine rarely seems to miss anymore and 2015 is certainly no exception and this is true of not only both colors but I include the négociant wines in this statement. Boillot noted that the reds were bottled in December 2016. (Chelsea Ventures, LLC, www.chelseaventures.us, IL, Milton Road Trading Corp, LLC, www.miltonroadtrading.com, CA and Massanois Imports, www.massanois.com, NY, all USA; Enotria Winecellars Ltd., www.enotria.co.uk, Lea & Sandeman, www.leaandsandeman.co.uk, and Georges Barbier of London, www.georgesbarbier.co.uk, all UK).

    Tasting note: A deft application of wood sets off the ripe aromas of plum, cassis and violet. The medium weight flavors are notably finer as well as much more precise with an appealing bead of minerality on the beautifully textured finish that delivers excellent depth and length. This is a first-rate villagesthough in fairness, it's a premier cruin all but name. Recommended.


    Maison Henri Boillot 2015


    Grand Cru White 750 ml

    Score: 97

    Tasted: Jun 11, 2017

    Drink: 2027+

    Issue: 67

    Don't miss!

    Note: from Puligny fruit

    Producer note: Henri Boillot continues to make stunning wines from his négociant operation and he has arguably become the finest pure négoce specializing in white burgundy today; yes there are other very fine négociants but the huge majority of them are really domaines hidden inside a "Maison" facade that buy in fruit or must to supplement their proprietary wines. Please see the comments for Domaine Henri Boillot (above). (Chelsea Ventures, LLC, www.chelseaventures.us, IL, USA; Enotria Wine Cellars Ltd., www.enotria.co.uk, Lea & Sandeman, www.leaandsandeman.co.uk and Georges Barbier of London, www.georgesbarbier.co.uk, all UK).

    Tasting note: A reserved and all but mute nose requires extended aeration to grudgingly reveal highly complex aromas that are presently composed by notes of pear, apple, white flower and an impressive array of citrus aromas that include tangerine, lemon and red grapefruit. There is seriously good concentration and an overt power to the very muscular flavors that brim with dry extract while delivering the longest finish in the entire range. This is a dramatic and huge example of Montrachet yet there is nothing heavy about it; indeed this too is inimitably classy.


    Domaine Boyer-Martenot 2010

    Meursault "Les Charrons"

    Villages White 750 ml

    Score: 90

    Tasted: Jun 01, 2012

    Drink: 2015+

    Issue: 47

    Outstanding Top value

    Producer note: Yves and Marie-Cécile's Boyer's son Vincent has now completely taken over the responsibility for day to day operations. He explained that while 2010 is an "excellent vintage that surprised us by its quality, the quantities were painfully restricted. On average we were down 33% but it was as much as 50% in some parcels. We began picking on the 18th of September and brought in extremely clean fruit that had potential alcohols that ranged between 12.8 and 13.5%. There was a superb concentration of both sugars and acidities, which means that the resulting wines are very fresh and tangy yet they are ripe and beautifully well-balanced." As the scores and commentaries suggest, 2010 is a first-rate vintage for the domaine and while their 2009s were lovely wines, it's clear that 2010 is a superior vintage chez Boyer. And while the Perrières and Caillerets are, as usual, the class of the cellar, do your pocketbook a favor and don't ignore several of the villagesefforts as they're terrific, in particular the Charrons and Reuchaux. (North Berkeley Imports, www.northberkeleyimports.com, Berkeley, CA; Michael Skurnik Wines, www.skurnikwines.com, Syosset, NY; Charles Taylor Wines, E-mail: charles@charlestaylorwines.com, Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, Domaine Direct, www.domainedirect.co.uk and Peter Graham Wines, www.petergrahamwines.com, all UK).

    Tasting note: This is also notably ripe yet the nose remains quite fresh and airy with a pretty mix of peach, apricot, acacia blossom and citrus hints. There is good richness to the lively medium weight flavors that possess good mid-palate fat and a lovely touch of minerality on the balanced, vibrant and utterly delicious finish. Worth a look.


    Domaine Buisson-Charles 2015

    Meursault Vieilles Vignes

    Villages White 750 ml

    Score: 90

    Tasted: Jun 11, 2017

    Drink: 2022+

    Issue: 67

    Outstanding Top value

    Producer note: The domaine is directed by 4th generation Michel Buisson, his daughter Catherine and son-in-law Patrick Essa, who is now responsible for the winemaking and élevage. Essa noted that "in contrast to several recent vintages, we enjoyed a relatively easy growing season in 2015. July and August were extremely hot, indeed enough so that some of our parcels suffered from hydric stress. I believe that it was necessary to wait to pick because when many growers started, the fruit still didn't yet have the optimal level of phenolic maturity. We chose to begin the harvest with the reds on the 5th of September and then continued with the whites on the 7th. The thick-skinned fruit was impeccably clean and possessed excellent ripeness levels, which is to say with potential alcohols in the 13%+ range. As to the quality, I would call 2015 a great vintage and particularly so in Meursault. The 2015s were bottled in January 2017 and Essa noted that he's now using corks of 25 mm in diameter rather than the standard 24 mm; several domaines have recently done this and the rationale behind it is to have a tighter seal against oxygen ingress. I would categorize the domaine's 2015s as having outperformed in the context of the vintage and in particular with their Corton-Charlemagne but don't overlook some of the Meursault cuvées. (Vintner Select, www.vintnerselect.com, OH, Milton Road Trading Corp, LLC, www.miltonroadtrading.com, CA, Caveau Selections, www.caveauselections.com, OR, Martine's Wines, www.martineswines.com, CA, Import Wines, WI, Old World Importing, Inc., www.oldworldimporting.com, CO, all USA; Flint Wines, www.flintwines.com, Latimer Vintners, www.latimervintners.com, Roberson Wine, www.roberson.co.uk, and Anthony Sarjeant, all UK).

    Tasting note: A smoky nose consists of petrol, apple and pear notes that are trimmed in subtle wood nuances. There is fine density to the mouth coating and vibrant medium-bodied flavors that deliver outstanding length for a villageslevel wine. This is at once seductive yet serious and offers terrific quality for its level.


    La Chablisiènne 2001

    Chablis - Preuses

    Grand Cru White 750 ml

    Score: 90

    Tasted: Oct 01, 2003

    Drink: 2007-14

    Issue: 12

    Producer note: As was detailed in Issue 8, La Chablisiènne is actually a collection of growers under the form of a cooperative that was founded in 1923. So great is the reach of this co-op that they now reportedly vinify and market between 25 and 33% of all the wine made in Chablis, a remarkable volume that is now approaching one million cases according to the director of marketing Hervé Tucki with whom I met this visit. M. Tucki, who is also responsible for overseeing the vinification of the wines, is a plain talking, no nonsense fellow who seems to enjoy telling it like it is, which is frankly rare when one talks to marketing types from big wines cooperatives. In rapid fire succession, he called the 2000 vintage "perfectly good but not great because of excess yields," 2001 a "sweat and blood vintage that was difficult seemingly from day one," and with a wink, described 2002 as a "vintage where we quite honestly lucked out by having a simply incredible September and indeed we thank St. Vincent for blessing us!" (St. Vincent is the patron saint of wine in Burgundy).  More precisely, Tucki explained that 2001 required hard choices. "The fruit was such that we had to either hold our breath and hope that our usual approach would hold up with fruit that was clearly below average or radically change things by taking risks and trying to make the most out of what we had to work with. We couldn't risk an entire vintage so we did a bit of both. We changed what we could and in particular, we shortened the élevage period for all wines and particularly so for those appellations that we raise in oak. We also worked less with the lees than usual and in some cases, we eliminated them altogether," he noted. By contrast, he described 2002 as being completely different. "July and August were not especially favorable but September managed to right most of those ills. In contrast to 2001 which is already quite golden, the color in 2002 is absolutely classic with the pale yellow and green reflections. In short, I like the vintage and for the moment I suppose we could say that it's the vintage of the century," wryly noting that there have only been two.
    As a general observation, the wines of La Chablisiènne are quite good considering the scale on which they are produced. Purists should take note that some of the upper level wines can be quite oaky and please read closely the following notes as I will point out those that strike me as being overtly oaky. That said, La Chablisiènne does not bottle its grands crus until at least 18 months after the vintage, which is to its credit though in some vintages, this can obviously serve to contribute more rather than less oak influence. (Monsieur Henri Wine Company, New Orleans, LA, USA; Howard Ripley, Marks & Spencer and Stevens Garnier, Ltd, all of the UK).

    Tasting note: This is noticeably oaky on the expressive, detailed and nicely complex nose, followed by very clean and ripe, medium weight flavors of superb intensity and first rate length. What sets it apart from the other '01s is the outstanding precision and focus and this is really lovely stuff, especially for the vintage. Great Chablis character.


    Domaine Daniel Dampt 2008

    Chablis "Côte de Léchet"

    1er Cru White 750 ml

    Score: 92

    Tasted: Oct 01, 2009

    Drink: 2012+

    Issue: 36

    Outstanding Top value

    Producer note: Daniel Dampt calls 2008 a vintage that is "relatively similar to 2007 analytically but quite different in terms of the wines and interestingly, it had exactly the same acidity levels as 1996. We began picking on the 30th of September, bringing in exceptionally clean fruit with sugar levels that ranged between 11.5 and 13% but one nuance is that the ripeness definitely favored the premiers crus, in fact none of them were chaptalized. Yields were down roughly 20% however, mostly due to the evaporative effects of the north wind before the harvest." I asked Dampt where his free SO2 target levels were these days and he told me that he has raised them to about 42 ppm at bottling. As I have stated in these pages before, the Dampt wines offer outstanding value and excellent quality. And both of Daniel's sons have begun taking over some of the family's vineyards and issue their own wines. As a consequence, I call your attention to the fact that each of the Vaillons cuvées now originate from different climats. Note: identical wines to the Daniel Dampt examples also appear under the Jean Defaix label. (Daniel Dampt label - Vinalia Imports, www.vinaliaimports.com, CA, ABC Fine Wines & Spirits, www.abcfws.com, FL and T. Edwards Wines, www.tedwardwines.com, NY, all USA; Jean Defaix label - Michael Skurnik Wines, www.skurnikwines.com, Syosset, NY; Ballantynes of Cowbridge, www.ballantynes.co.uk, Georges Barbier and Vine Trail, www.vinetrail.co.uk, all UK).

    Tasting note: It would be almost impossible to mistake this for anything other than Chablis as the pungent nose oozes Chablis character and the precise, even chiseled flavors are brimming with oyster shell and stone notes that carry over to the equally understated, textured and refined finish. If there is a nit, this is not presently highly complex but it appears that there is sufficiently good material to permit that to develop with time in bottle.


    Here are a sampling of the reviews from the nearly 100,000 wine database of Burghound.com, from a selection of grands cruspremiers crusvillagesand regional.  For more information, visit www.burghound.com




    Allen Meadows founded Burghound.com in 2000.  It was the first of its kind to offer specialized and more importantly exhaustive coverage of a specific wine region. It was initially devoted exclusively to the coverage of the wines of Burgundy and later added extensive U. S. pinot noir coverage and Champagne.  The first issue was released in January 2001 and there are now subscribers in more than 63 countries and nearly all 50 states, all having access to a nearly 100,000 extensive wine database.  Meadows spends over 5 months a year in Burgundy going cave to cave to visit more than 300 domaines during that time.


    Hailed as “the world’s foremost Burgundy expert” by acclaimed author Matt Kramer, Meadows released his first book The Pearl of the Côte – The Wines of Vosne-Romanée in 2010, followed in 2014 with the release of the Burgundy Essentials Audio series, a nearly 10-hour, 7-part program created specifically for all wine lovers, from the casual wine enthusiast to the seasoned pro.  This 3-year project-in-the-making was expressly designed to demystify what is a highly complex and even intimidating wine region yet enhance the knowledge of those already well-immersed in their Burgundy education. His new book, Burgundy Vintages – A History from 1845 will be available in January 2019.


    Allen's insights on Burgundy have become invaluable to wine professionals and collectors alike. His authoritative views on Burgundy are the reference standard in this highly complex and diverse region.

    Read More

Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users. or to see wine moments from your world.

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  20 Wines  from  18 Producers 

Domaine Jean Grivot Richebourg 2021 /This possesses the spiciest nose among the 3 grand crus in 2021 with its array of sandalwood, anise, clove, jasmine tea and cool black cherry and hoisin scents. The succulent, round and very generously proportioned big-bodied flavors display focused power and muscle on the mineral-driven, palate soaking and superbly long finish. This youthfully austere effort is markedly compact, and I would strongly suggest not even thinking of opening a bottle before its 10th anniversary. Terrific and especially so for the vintage.

4m 11d ago

Vintage  2022  has new information

7m 2d ago

 Maison Louis Latour  has news

The Bourgogne 2023 vintage: Surpassing all expectations!  It's been some time since Bour  more ...

7m 2d ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  11 Wines  from  2 Producers 

Louis Latour Montrachet 2020 / Moderate reduction and wood render the nose. More intriguing are the dense, serious and palate staining larger-bodied flavors that deliver excellent length on the powerful and muscular if noticeably warm finish where the wood treatment resurfaces. This is quite backward and tightly wound and a wine that will like need all of 10 to 12 years to reveal its full potential. 2030+ 92-94

7m 2d ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  12 Wines  from  11 Producers 

Albert Bichot Domaine du Pavillon Volnay Les Santenots 1er Cru 2019 – Discreet but perceptible wood sets off the overtly spicy aromas of dark cherry and raspberry that are trimmed in equally discreet nuances of violet and lavender. There is fine mid-palate concentration to the medium-bodied flavors that possess solid power and focus on the sneaky long, balanced and firm finish.

7m 8d ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a wine moment

“Denis Bachelet described the 2020 growing season as “beginning with a very dry spring so we knew early on that we were likely to have a lot of hydric stress in the vines and that’s exactly what happened. Moreover, with the warm early season temperatures, the vegetative cycle started exceptionally early so we also knew that absent a really cool summer that we would have an early start to the harvest. This in the end is exactly what happened as we chose to begin picking on the 27th of August and harvested through to the 31st. The fruit was clean, ripe and required very little sorting. Yields though were again quite low if not quite so low as the derisory volumes we realized in 2021. The persistent low yields is becoming a serious problem and unfortunately, it’s not just that Mother Nature is being difficult. It’s also because of the serious decline in viable rootstocks and the fact that so many my neighbors, me included, have chosen those that are too easily susceptible to heat stress only compounds the problem. On the plus side, both potential alcohols, which came in around 13%, and total acidities were very good. I like the 2020s a lot and it’s the kind of vintage that will age for decades but also should be reasonably accessible young.” Bachelet has once again made stunning wines though this is hardly a surprise given his virtually unblemished track record for producing wines of grace and style. Fans of the domaine should note that once again there will not be an Evocelles due to the tiny quantities.

2020 Gevrey-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes: (from vines averaging between 60 and 70 years of age located in Les Champs Perriers, En Derée, Sylvie, Les Jeunes Rois, La Justice, La Burie and La Platière plus, in 2020, Les Evocelles). Here the beautifully layered nose combines notes of black cherry liqueur with hints of earth, game, underbrush and humus. There is once again excellent energy and precision to the sleek and delicious medium weight flavors that possess a seductive texture before terminating in an impressively persistent and well-balanced finale. Villages-level wines rarely are as good as this and it’s one to buy if you can find it. (90-93)/2028+

2y 1m ago

1 Wines 1 Producers

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a wine moment

“2020 Echézeaux: (from vines situated in En Orveaux planted in 1923, 1947, 1964 and 1979 totaling .56 ha). This possesses the spiciest nose in the range with an almost kaleidoscopic array that is comprised by notes of rose petal, lavender, violet, soy, hoisin, sandalwood and jasmine tea. The suave and sappy yet quite powerful and concentrated larger-scaled flavors are supported by refined, even sophisticated, tannins on the driving, mouth coating and hugely long finish. Wow, this is quite an Echézeaux and absolutely worth a search to find. (93-96)/2032+

Jean-Yves Bizot, who runs this tiny but fascinating domaine, noted that for the 2021 vintage the surface area will be a bit larger as he was able to purchase the Morey villages vineyard of Clos de la Bidaude, which is a monopole. He described 2020 as “one more in a seemingly unending series of hot and dry vintages where we again dodged frost risk. Despite the summer being very hot and dry, we did have some oidium pressure and sunburned berries. We picked from the 27th to the 29th of August and brought in pitifully low yields of only 8 hl/ha. The berries were tiny due to the extreme dryness and there was simply no juice in them. Ripeness levels were good as the potential alcohols came in between 13 to 13.5%. Acidities were good even though there was almost no malic acidity. At least the 100% whole cluster vinifications were easy and presented no problems during the total cuvaison of about 14 days. As to the wines, I have to say that I’m not wild about them but I’m not exactly sure why as there’s nothing particularly wrong. Maybe I will like them better in time as sometimes you’re just too close to things to judge them objectively. Stylistically they remind me of a richer 1996.” I would observe that sometimes winemakers are indeed to close to their work to judge them as I was sincerely knocked out by the quality, and in particular by the Echézeaux as it is outstanding in 2020. Fans of the domaine should be aware that because of the tiny quantities there will be no Vosne 1er Elise Fermouche or Les Réas.”

2y 3m ago

1 Wines 1 Producers

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  19 Wines  from  5 Producers 

Méo-Camuzet Clos de Vougeot 2018 / An unusually spicy and appealingly fresh array is comprised by liqueur-like red berry fruit aromas, especially cherry, that are laced with notes earth, lavender and a whisper of exotic spice. There is a lovely sense of underlying tension to the rich, well-detailed and relatively sleek medium-bodied flavors that display focused power on the sneaky long and markedly firm finale. 
Barrel Sample: 91-94

2y 5m ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  28 Wines  from  1 Producers 

The estate wines of Rhys Vineyards are made from organic and biodynamically farmed fruit. Owner Kevin Harvey and winemaker Jeff Brinkman continue to fashion truly remarkable wines, indeed they are consistently among the best examples that California has to offer. At each of their vineyards sites, over 75% of the land is left in a completely natural state. In addition to the native wildlife, they plant herbs, flowers, vegetables and grain crops while free ranging chickens and sheep also help naturally fertilize the vineyards. This is all part of their philosophy that creating a living soil creates better wine. Their winemaking process, from harvest to bottling, is based on a gravity system and the wines are never pumped, fined, or filtered. Readers should be aware that the Rhys wines are clearly fashioned in a built-to-age style and thus are most assuredly not intended to show their best young.

2y 5m ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  24 Wines  from  17 Producers 

Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Bonnes-Mares 2018 is very deeply colored, in fact so much so that it would make a young port blush! The ripe aromas of red and blue berries, spice and earth display a mentholated top note. The dense, powerful and mouthcoating broad-shouldered flavors possess evident muscularity while delivering excellent length on the youthfully austere finale. This isn't refined, indeed it's borderline rustic, but it's a dramatic and impressive wine that should live for decades.

2y 5m ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  5 Wines  from  2 Producers 

La Grande Rue Grand Cru 2010 is quite ripe though still fresh and bright with intensely spicy aromas of red berry and cherry liqueur. There is a seductively silky texture to the middle weight and delicious flavors that possess excellent depth as well as seriously impressive persistence. 

2y 6m ago

Allen Meadows/BWW2024 Finalist, Wine Writer (United States)  had a tasting of  6 Wines  from  1 Producers 

Château de Pommard 'Simone' 2012 – There is at once fine richness but also good refinement to the powerful and concentrated middle weight flavors that deliver seriously good length on the very firm finish where the only nit is a hint of warmth.

2y 6m ago

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