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Big Red Diary

a day of mâconnais and pierres dorées…

I think the sun returned today – 23.5°C – that’s the first time since the second half of March! My visits were a homage to Chardonnay Day, though I’ll admit – one day early:

After my morning tasting of Mâconnais, I decided to jog up to the top of the Rock of Solutre – kind of disappointed that it turned out to be only 1.4 km – in my memory, it was more! Still, the distance was double as there’s also only one way down 🙂 The afternoon brought a visit to Thivin’s Clos de Rochebonne in the Pierres Dorées* region of Beaujolais – their white wine, of course! Though I should note that contrary to the ethos of Chardonnay Day, Claude Geoffray has a little Gouais Blanc planted in the vineyard – well, I suppose we could say that it’s chardonnay’s mum (or dad!)

Of-course much more about today’s visits in my May Report, for subscribers…
*Did you know that ‘La Pierre Dorée’ is a commercial brand of ‘industrially produced’ cheese in France? Who would have thought!?

a little weekend wine – week 20 2019

2014 Jean-Marc Vincent, Puligny-Montrachet Corvées des Vignes
Plenty of colour. A nose that’s vibrant but also has a little rubbery reduction about it – for the 36 hours that this was open, it hardly faded. Wide, fresh, energetic, lovely acidity – penetrating flavour with super depth – moreish despite that same reductive note showing on the nose. Lovely but surely even better without the reduction…
Rebuy – Maybe

2017 Chasselay, Beaujolais La Platière
What to follow a Griotte-Chambertin with?
Ooh – that’s a deep, dark colour. The nose is a little yeasty and reductive – but what a panorma of flavour. Juicy dark fruit, layers of flavour. Fine freshness and lovely finishing. A hit!
Rebuy – Yes

2010 Gilles Bouton, Blagny 1er Sous le Puits
Hardly medium colour, also starting to show some age. A forward nose, showing some leafy development but essentiLly fresh and correct. Wide, open, bright and fresh – lip smackingly good flavour of acid-led freshness and fine depth and complexity – anonymously starting but opening with plenty pf interest. Essentially not much to start, but finishing with lots of fun, lots of flavour. Not as good as a decent 2010 villages from a proper red-wine village though…
Rebuy – No

2004 Alex Gambal, St.Aubin 1er Les Murgers des Dents du Chien
Plenty of colour here, but the nose is completely lacking any oxidation – there’s the first early suggestion of ‘older’ chardonnay aroma, and just a touch of asparagus too – I’ve met plenty of asparagus in 2011 Chablis, but this is a first in the Côte d’Or! The asparagus is present, if fainter, on the palate too. The palate has drive and an intense minerlity – I’m impressed, yet, this wine could do with a little more sucrosity – it’s hardly moreish. Good, indeed impressive, but certainly not great – other than intellectually…
Rebuy – No

2016 de Serrigny, Savigny lès Beaune Blanc
Ooh – that’s an attractive and inviting nose of creamy, sweet citrus I don’t mind if I do! In the mouth round but with rippling acidity, sweet citrus and a delicious, faintly oak-tinged flavour ensemble. Absolutely stunning for the price – über-delicious!
Rebuy – Yes

Latest Burgundy Reports



The March 2019 issue of Burgundy-Report

New Names from Chablis – 2017s
In January I did my regular blind tasting of Petit Chablis and from the pick of those wines were some domaines that I didn't already know – here they are:

Profile: Chevallier
Profile: Christophe et Fils
Profile: Eléonore Moreau
Profile: Francine et Olivier Savary
Profile: Guy et Olivier Alexandre
Profile: Moreau-Naudet
Profile: Pisse-Loup
Profile: Sylvain Mosnier

'Older' names, but not Chablis – 2017s

Berthaut-Gerbet – 2017
Clos de la Chapelle – 2017
Gouffier – 2017
Maison de la Chapelle – 2017

Wines tasted Blind
Nearly 100 wines that are less challenging for your bank balance:

2017 Beaujolais Blanc
2017 Irancy

Screw-cap versus Cork
Tasted back to 2004 with Clotilde Davenne:

Screw-caps versus Cork

The connection between elevage and barrels

Elevage, Oak & Alchemy



The February 2019 issue of Burgundy-Report
Beaujolais 2017

2017 Beaujolais – A small but often perfectly formed vintage…

The Producers
45 producers and over 300 wines – all visited in the month of February 2019. Comment from their producers on 2018 as well as 2017. As always, those extra-special wines are highlighted, though not any 2018s at it's still too early:

Anne-Sophie Dubois – 2017
Bois du Chat – 2017
Château Bellevue – 2017
Château Bonnet – 2017
Château de La Chaize – 2017
Château de La Terrière – 2017
Château des Bachelards – 2016
Château des Jacques – 2017
Château Moulin à Vent – 2016
Château Pierreux + Mommessin – 2017
Château Poncié – 2017
Château Thivin – 2017
Claire & Fabien Chasselay – 2017
Clos de la Roilette – 2017
Daniel Bouland – 2017
David-Beaupère – 2017
de Bel Air – 2017
des Nugues – 2017
du Breuil – 2018
du Paradis – 2017
Fabien Collonge – 2017
Georges Duboeuf – 2017
Girin – 2017
Jean Foillard – 2017
Julien Sunier – 2017
La Pirolette – 2017
Labruyère – 2017
Le Nid – 2016
Longère – 2017
Louis-Claude Desvignes – 2017
Manoir du Carra Sambardier – 2017
Mathieu et Camille Lapierre – 2017
Mee Godard – 2017
Monternot – Les Jumeaux – 2017
Paul Janin – 2017
Profile: Bernard Jomain
Profile: Château du Basty
Profile: David Large
Profile: Jean-Marc Burgaud
Profile: Philippe Deschamps
Raphaël Chopin – 2017
Richard Rottiers – 2017
Thillardon – 2017
Trenel – 2017
Vincent Audras – 2017

Bourgogne Côte d'Or
30 wines tasted from the maiden, 2017, vintage:

A Bourgogne Côte d’Or?

You still like to have something touchy?


The Finest Wines of Burgundy

A portable, hard-wearing guide to the Côte d’Or plus 90 producers of note and their best wines. Truth be told, there should have been 150 great producers – but not in the 320 pages that were prescribed.
It’s probably time to start working on a new one – eh?

Burgundy Report

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