The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.
Of all the villages of the Côte de Nuits, Morey-Saint-Denis is one of the most fruitful in terms of the number of its Grands Crus. The Clos de Tart, which remains a solely-held entity, was founded by the Cistercians of Tart in 1141. Since that date, it has been owned by only three families. The Clos Saint-Denis came on the scene in the 11th century, thanks to the fortress of Vergy. The Clos de la Roche and Clos des Lambrays are both semi-monopoles and both have long histories which have involved some adjustment of boundaries between Climats. The Clos de la Roche and Clos Saint-Denis were awarded their Grand Cru appellations on 8 December 1936, Clos de Tart on 4 January 1939, and Clos des Lambrays 27 April 1981.
Facing east or slightly south of east at around 250 metres above sea-level, these Climats may be seen as a southerly extension of the Grands Crus of Gevrey-Chambertin. First comes the Clos de la Roche, then Clos Saint-Denis followed by Clos des Lambrays, and finally Clos de Tart leading to Bonnes-Mares.
Limestone dominates in the Clos de la Roche where the soil is barely 30 cm deep with few pebbles but with large boulders which give the climat its name. In the Clos de Tart, scree-derived soils 40-120 cm thick cover the underlying limestone. The Upper part of the Clos des Lambrays is marly with claylimestone soil further down. The Clos Saint-Denis at the foot of the slope has pebble-free brown limestone soils which contain phosphorus (like Chambertin) and clay (like Musigny).
Diversity is to be expected as each Grand Cru has its own personality. To the eye, this wine is plain ruby, sometimes a bit darker. Veiled in strawberry and violet, the Clos de Tart offers both robustness and charm. Quite tannic when young, it softens with age while gaining in complexity. The Clos des Lambrays is a true aristocrat, fully rounded in youth and with added depth and gravity as the years go by. The Clos Saint-Denis impresses by its finely–tuned nuances – this wine is the Mozart of the Côte de Nuits. The Clos de la Roche is firmer, deeper and more serious, closely akin to Chambertin. Aromas of humus and truffle are often precursors to notes of small red or black fruits. A small part of the BONNES-MARES appellation lies in this commune, but the greater part is in Chambolle-Musigny. (See Fact-sheet No. 5).
Intense and full-bodied when fully mature, these wines have a densely tannic texture and an aromatic richness which makes them a fitting - and equal - partner for feathered game. They are perfect, too, with a rib steak and, for lovers of Asian cuisine, adapt well to the aromatic intensity of glazed poultry. Their supple but virile tannins go well with veal (braised or in sauce) and with roast or braised lamb. One must also not forget their invaluable affinity for strong-flavoured soft-centred cheeses.
Serving temperatures : 12 to 13 °C for young wines, 15 to 16 °C for older wines.
1985 Burgundy by Clive Coates MW / The 1985 vintage represents a turning point in the wine history of Burgundy. Before this date, on the whole, winegrowers made wine, merchants bought it, assembled several plots, if necessary, and sold it. Subsequently, more and more estates began to mature, bottle and market the wines themselves. In the meantime, many merchants had taken the opportunity to expand their own estates, so that, particularly at the upper end, they were more or less self-sufficient. In the 1970s, and earlier, there were barely around twenty producers – we think of Rousseau, Dujac, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Gouges, Lafarge and Leflaive – who did not sell in bulk. Many of today's super-stars bottled only a token quantity and were unknown to even the most perceptive merchant or journalist.
The emergence of these new areas is transforming Burgundy. In a very short time, almost everyone who had a grand cru and many who had a good premier cru were bottling as much as they could themselves. There was, of course, the question of cash flow. If you sold to a merchant, you were paid in full at the time of the next vintage. If you sold in bottles, you didn't get the money until about two and a half years later, after bottling 18 months after harvest and possible shipping in winter thereafter. We would therefore not be able, unless we were otherwise financed, to move from bulk sales to bottled sales overnight. I remember the late Philippe Engel explaining to me that the transformation for him took ten years.
The process was encouraged by local residents. Burgundy is a generous wine region. Most growers are on very good terms with their neighbors and are only too happy to help if there is a problem. Naturally, the best ones have a queue of potential buyers waiting to step in if one of the regular customers falls through. What could be more natural for the important owner of the much sought-after estate than to recommend a hitherto unknown young neighbor who was looking for business. If he or she was a cousin or in-law, so much the better.
Moreover, the quality was improving, and by leaps and bounds. The best growers went to Viti in Beaune then to the University of Dijon. Many left for a stopover in California or Australia, or elsewhere in France. Tasting each other’s wines with your neighbors has become commonplace. Firstly, selling your wine under your own label required you not to cut corners, which you might have been tempted to do if you were simply selling in bulk. Tasting your wine alongside those of your friends and reading a review of it in a wine magazine will soon tell you whether you are producing superior quality or not. Second, viticulture and viticulture techniques had become increasingly sophisticated. There has been a return to plowing and the elimination of herbicides and pesticides. The size of the harvest was taken into greater account. And finally the introduction of the sorting table: the greatest contribution to increasing quality of all. Today, everyone has a sorting table. The first time I saw it was Domaine de la Romanée-Conti when I was making a video in 1987. Finally, after a disappointing run of vintages in the 1970s and early 1980s, 1985 ushered in a series of high quality years that continues to this day. Burgundy has not had a bad vintage since 1984. Thirty years.
The consequence of all this is that it is increasingly difficult for everyone, not just the outside journalist, to keep up. Every year, new areas, worthy of exploration and waiting to be discovered. In 1985, I visited six estates in Gevry, four in Morey and Chambolle and perhaps eight in Vosne. Today I should visit 25 in Gevrey, and so on. A marathon for which I no longer have the energy. I am very lucky to have been there at the time and to have experienced what was an exciting time in Burgundy.