Entries from 2019

the (mainly red) 2018s of the côte de beaune

By billn on December 26, 2019 #4 subscribers#reports

And even further south – now online for subscribers. The Côte de Nuits and my full analysis will be online this year – just! Enjoy!…

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an opinon piece for christmas day…

By billn on December 25, 2019 #4 subscribers#warning - opinion!

But doesn’t everybody love 2018 red burgundy? For subscribers, of-course. I decided not to add tinsel!…

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christmas wines, weekend wines – week 51, 2019

By billn on December 23, 2019 #degustation

I haven’t yet decided (found!) which magnums will be opened on Christmas day, but I’ve found plenty of 1999 reds that I should probably attack. I’ve older whites – 1992/3 Jobards – but will probably attack some 09/10 Ramonets in the single bottle size bracket – and you?

2016 Buisson-Battault, Bourgogne Chardonnay
Nice shape – volume, depth some impression of concentration in the aromas too – ripe but inviting. Ooh, that’s lovely, bright, energetic with proper intensity. Super texture, a slightly saline and layered finishing flavour that’s also touched with a little floral perfume. Great Bourgogne!
Rebuy – Yes

1995 Jean Grivot, Vosne-Romanée Bossières
Pow – a big waft of spiced cherry fruit – that’s a great nose to start with. Vibrant, the acidity was never in question in 1995, more the tannins, and they are still present here, but definitely further towards the background now. The fruit on the palate is an attractive acid-cherry, the middle to finishing flavours have more maturity, a little roast style to the fruit. Nobody is likely to ‘accuse’ this 1995 of elegance, but it’s exciting and tasty wine…
Rebuy – Maybe

1995 Sylvain Cathiard, Vosne-Romanée 1er Malconsorts
Plenty of colour. This is a much deeper but narrower nose than the Grivot – a suggestion of flowers, only, above. Starting narrower but filling, growing wider and wider – the mid-palate is certainly bigger, smoother and more saline. Very long – a graphite style of minerality in this finish. Fine but not other-worldly. On day two, this wine remains a little tight – the cork? – and there’s more than a suggestion of brett. This case has been worth just a little more than the £150 I paid way back when (a case of 12 for you youngsters that have only ever seen 6-packs and 3-packs!) but more for the earlier drunk wines than the later wines which have all suffered a little from brett.
Rebuy – No

2018 white burgundy report

By billn on December 20, 2019 #asides

Puligny-Montrachet 1er CombettesI know that this Diary page has been a little quiet for the last days, but there’s been much, furious, typing in the background whilst in my winter hideaway in Nice! If the weather had been poorer – as was the forecast – it would have been online sooner 🙂

My October Burgundy Report is now online – that means 2018 White Burgundy – the biggest coverage to-date, with 66 domaines’ wines evaluated – well over 700 wines.

You can see it here.

week 50 2019 – the visits…

By billn on December 13, 2019 #degustation#reports

Yes, I know – week 50!

I’m now in Switzerland, but should have been in France ready to use my TGV tickets on Sunday – but there are no TGVs. The same time last year it was the gilets jaunes. Oh well…

Anyway, the last visits of this year are now completed, so it’s just down to the typing of those 113 individual reports: The 2018 Whites issue (October Report) will be online in the next few days – the 2018 Reds issue (November Report) will be online before my Christmas lunch – gotta have a target!

My thanks to the winemakers who made time available this week:

weekend 49 2019 – the wines

By billn on December 10, 2019 #degustation

weekend wines

Three ‘bravo’ wines in one weekend – none of which were the expensive ones – we were blessed! 😉

2017 Albert Grivault, Meursault 1er Clos des Perrières
A creamy nose – very nice, background citrus but not ‘special’ today. In the mouth this has beautiful shape, line and length – but – the oak is all-pervading and very creamy. This is a wine for saving – drunk at least a couple of years too early. Very long but it’s currently about potential. A shame to have opened today.
Rebuy – Maybe

2018 Céline Chevallier, Chablis
Perfect – no oak! This wine has a beautiful top note of aroma – despite the 2018 vintage, it’s absolutely classic. In the mouth too it’s much more mouth-watering and moreish compared to the Grivault. Absolutely delicious – bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

2009 Château de Bellevue, Morgon Le CLos Reserve du Caveau
Deeply coloured. A nose that starts sleek, dark-.fruited and has a graphite/mineral impression. In the mouth this starts equally sleek and has driving direction – Morgon is like the Corton of Beaujolais – but with time and aeration this begins to fill all the corners of your mouth – powerful but at the same time cushioned – no fat. This is great but still an absolute baby. Bravo again!
Rebuy – Yes

2001 Nicolas Potel, Romanée St.Vivant
A cork that breaks into two. Not a big nose but one that’s very rewarding in its understated, complex, moderately spiced, slightly mature way. In the mouth, there’s a lovely shape and super texture – mouth-filling and at the same time, a little soft. The flavours have quite some maturity about them. This is delicious wine but vs the cost of entry today, of dubious value – this cost ‘only’ €80 way back when. Oh, and don’t leave any for day two either – I left some overnight in the fridge, next day it was bretty – something I didn’t note on opening. A wine that I enjoyed very much, but wouldn’t dream of re-purchasing at current pricing.
Rebuy – No

2005 Claude et Catherine Maréchale, Pommard La Chanière
Deep colour – oh and what a great nose too – profound, some modest notes of maturity – it’s highly inviting. Big in the mouth, like the nose, profound. I love the padded muscularity, the delicious complexity, and the great texture. This is great, great villages and it’s ready to go now! Bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

week 49 2019 – the visits…

By billn on December 06, 2019 #reports#travels in burgundy 2019

Yes – it’s already week 49!
Above, the people who said ‘yes’ to a visit by me this week! And this week, no surprise, some great wines!
I’m starting to wind down now, just another ~8 visits next week, followed by a smoking keyboard – actually the keyboard doesn’t get that hot as my typing seems to get less and less accurate each year!

a tyring problem and frost

By billn on December 05, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

Yesterday and today were cold and frosty in the Côtes. Unlike yesterday, today’s typical winter mist, except for a while in Nuits, never really departed, blanketing the Côtes (but not the Hautes Côtes) in foggy, low cloud. Today’s temperature never turning positive – early morning Comblanchien resembling a ski-resort as the road was so white. Very occasionally it was picturesque – the first haw frost of this year-end!

My day started with a tyring problem ie practically no air in a rear tyre – only 1-month-old tyre at that. So my first job today was to visit the local retailer of said tyres, who tested for this and tested for that but could find nothing amiss – so sent me away with a new valve. 12 hours later all is good – and I was only 30 minutes late for my first appointment in Morey!

sunset stress…

By billn on December 03, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

It started frosty, but it was lovely in the Côtes today – Côte de Nuits to be precise – save for the biting wind and 2-3°C. Fortunately, there were plenty of dogs to stroke to keep my hands warm!

Despite the great light and the fabulous sunset (no pics – I was driving!) it was a stressful day, as I left my phone in Beaune by mistake. I had enough cash for lunch (just!) but the question was ‘what to do with my hands between visits?’ or ‘what if somebody needs me?’ I tried to enjoy the day without the phone, but didn’t quite manage it – does that make me Gen X or still completely (sub) millennial? 😉

Anyway – an evening of typing and then jogging in minus °C…

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