Entries from 2020

2019 Red Burgundy – part 1 – Côte de Beaune

By billn on December 31, 2020 #reports

2019 Vintage - Red Côte de BeauneComing after my first two 2019 Burgundy Reports on:
The whites of the Mâconnais, followed by
The whites of the Côte de Beaune

Now my latest report, covering the reds of the Côte de Beaune is now online – here. This will be Part 1 of my two 2019 Red Burgundy Reports.

This, first, red report covers the visits to taste 2019s at domaines #74 – #113 and includes my summary of the vintage characteristics – and what and who I like.

I hope that you enjoy this in-depth look. The reds of the Côte de Nuits will follow in the next days – hopefully, before I leave for Chablis to start my White Burgundy Report – Part 3!

this week’s wines

By billn on December 28, 2020 #degustation

All my magnums have been put to one side as we have been the quarantine-duo at home this Christmas – but still, an interesting range of bottles were opened:

2x 2018 Chablis – Davenne plus domaine William Fevre
Clotilde Davenne’s was, round but very nicely shaped. It was sweet and delicious wine but I really wouldn’t guess Chablis. The 2018 Fevre, by comparison, was the more perfumed wine, floral but also with a different style of freshness. In the mouth, the Fevre was clearly Chablis, even if it wasn’t aromatically. Still, a very fine villages Chablis, that my experince tells me will only become more and more ‘classic’ with patience – unfortunately it may just be too tasty to put that to the test!
Rebuy – Maybe & Yes!

2017 William Fevre, Chablis
The first of these Chablis that offers an obvious aromatic blast of the seashore. There’s a little more structure in the mouth – which would imply that patience is a virtue – yet the wine is still mouth-wateringly delicious. I’m forgiving myself for drinking it! Really excellent villages.
Rebuy – Oh Yes!

1999 Faiveley Nuits St.Georges 1er Aux Chaignots
A domaine wine, so it has the gold ‘lozenge’ to say bottled without fining or filtration – the robust 54mm (that’s extra long!) cork is impressive too.
What a great nose! Dark but glossy red fruit – faintly with sucrosity, always an invitation. The palate is more than a match for the nose; wide, super acidity but with a depth of dark red fruit and a matching depth of creamy flavour that was obviously more overtly oaky when younger. Top, top wine – an equal to many grand crus – bravo! The best wine over Christmas…
Rebuy – Oh Yes!

So to follow-on from the Chézeaux/Ponsot Chambolle-Charmes of the last week or-so – how about two more? The Ponsot was particular but super, one was good but not great and one that left me disappointed…

2008 Alex Gambal, Chambolle-Musigny 1er Les Charmes
A little more than medium colour. The nose is inviting, darker, truffled fruit, almost a suggestion of rosemary too – which accents the red berry fruit. Mouth-filling with fresh energy – intense without concentration, but layered and energetic in this lovely depth of finishing flavour, a finish that’s still accented with a faintly drying tannin. The antithesis of concentrated sweet wine as we’ve seen almost non-stop since the 2015 vintage. If only for that, I’m enjoying it a lot!
Rebuy – Maybe

1995 Gerard Mugneret, Chambolle-Musigny 1er Les Charmes
Wax topped – but with the flexibility to put the corkscrew directly through it – except that the cork breaks – what a surprise! But the ah-so extracts the last part with ease.
The nose – well it could definitely be better! There’s a freshness of dried leaves but also some brett in the depth. In the mouth this is is much more attractive – intense, attractively acidic in a way that modern vintages are not (let’s wait for 2020…) Wide, no fat and a super finish that radiates from the core of the wine and grows larger and larger. The first half of the wine disappoints, the second-half, far from it – but it’s hard for me to drink a wine whilst try to avoid smelling it! Delicious on one hand but a shame on the other – of course, actually it doesn’t smell worse on day two – that’s a surprise!
Rebuy – No

independence – not!

By billn on December 27, 2020 #warning - opinion!

Here am I, one day from quarantine freedom, though with one-less mother-in-law due to covid.
(Disclaimer: not the only mother-in-law I’ve had!)

Rather than writing about winemakers and their wines this morning, I’m looking at obviously shoddy ‘journalism.‘ I’m not even taking exception at what has been written – only that the author is in no position to write it for an audience who are presumably (well what do you think?) assuming this to be an independent piece of work – as opposed to shilling for wineries whose wines they sell. This sort of thing makes it rather shit for those of us who try to be independent, and even (god forbid) actually buy – with our own money – from wineries whose wines we like and recommend to others!

Not my typical Sunday, but don’t worry there will be some wines on these pages too 🙂

2019 White Burgundy – part 2

By billn on December 23, 2020 #reports

After part 1 – the Mâconnais, now part 2 of my tour of 2019 White Burgundy domaines (domaines 27-73) is now online with my summary of the vintage – and what and who I like.

I hope that you enjoy this in-depth look. White Burgundy part 3 will be my January report from Chablis – assuming the borders stay open – and I don’t succumb!

I’m already underway with my November report which will be Côte de Beaune (& Chalonnaise) reds: another 38 domaines – online before the 31st December!

the first of the quarantine wines(!)

By billn on December 20, 2020 #degustation

Boisset Auxey Ponsot Chézeaux Chambolle Charmes

The first day of 10 days quarantine for me and my better half – but we’ve no symptoms or positive tests – but yesterday we visited my 96-year-old mother-in-law in her care home – and she was (in theory!) negative – but today they rang us to say she is positive, so…

At least I can still taste my wines 🙂

2010 Jean-Claude Boisset, Auxey-Duresses Les Crais
A deeper yellow colour but far from gold. That’s a beguilingly attractive nose – ripe citrus and salted caramel. In the mouth such a lovely acidity – incisive wine. The flavour of many dimensions and a depth of creamy, salted caramel, like the nose. The barrel is obviously playing its part here, but oak-averse as I am, I can only say that this is completely delicious – give me a second glass. There was a third and a fourth too – none left for day two!
Rebuy – Yes

1997 Ponsot/des Chézeaux, Chambolle-Musigny 1er Les Charmes
An impressive 54mm of cork-length here.
Plenty of browning to this medium strength colour. The nose starts with deep, smoky, sweetly-turned-earth, dried leaves, a flash of espresso – but then it’s gone – and a graphite-style aroma. There’s not much aromatically in this Chambolle that you would associate with fruit or flowers! In the mouth, the style is broad with plenty of acidity – some 1997 sweetness and plumptiousness of texture. Waves of flavour sweep from the middle into the finish of this wine, plenty of bitters and vegetable references but without tipping over into vegetal. I find this wine captivating but don’t come here for cliché Chambolle!
Rebuy – Yes

wines for friday night

By billn on December 19, 2020 #degustation

As a warm-up, there was the last glass from the Pavelot, then the following, their two corks in fine shape:

2018 Jacques Saumaize, St.Véran Poncetys
That’s a deep nose, faint smoke surrounding a vibrant depth of ripe pineapples and minerals. Ouch – that’s so good! The pineapple fruit to the fore again but more importantly a zinging width of energy and then a long mouth-watering line of finishing flavour – more mineral and citrus here. That’s a beauty!
Rebuy – Yes

2006 Comtes Lafon, Monthélie 1er Les Duresses
There’s the start of a little tertiary dried leaf aroma, but above is still a pure and attractive dark fruit and flowers – almost blackcurrants. Very silky with a nicely direct line of flavour. Plenty on insistent concentration with wide waves of persistent finishing flavour too – here the blackcurrant returns, maybe a little blackcurrant leaf too. Fine acidity and a tannin that’s more suggestion than reality. This is still young, but it’s also delicious.
Rebuy – Yes

pavolot’s 1999 dominode…

By billn on December 16, 2020 #degustation

pavelot 1999 savigny dominodeI opened the 1997 of this about 2 weeks ago and it was in brilliant form. Here the 1999 – unsurprisingly a little younger and less mature, but both drinkable (very!) and showing the extra class of the 1999 vintage:

1999 Jean-Marc Pavelot, Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er La Dominode
A cork that came out in one – obviously bleached – but not, seemingly, to the detriment of the wine.
Clearly a lot of maturity in this colour but, all the same, deeply coloured. Impressive depth to this nose – a core of powerful, perhaps not fully open, fruit. I have the impression of both class and sulky – clearly less mature aromas than the ’97. Mouth-filling, plenty of tannin if you go searching it out, otherwise here’s a very sophisticated, balanced and concentrated wine. A suggestion of Savigny herb in the middle flavours. Mouth-watering freshness and still an accent of drying tannin – though you’ll no-longer find any grain. I would say just about starting to drink properly but with at least 10 years ahead of it – I’m very happy to have 6 or 7 more in the cellar. Bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

Burgundy Report – Mâconnais 2019

By billn on December 15, 2020 #4 subscribers#reports

Just in case anyone missed it, my Mâconnais 2019 Burgundy Report is online. 26 domaines’ wines and their comments on recent vintages too. There are also a bunch of tasting notes on 2018s as a number of domaines thought it too early to show their 2019s. Does that leave you thirsty for some red(?) If…

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something for the weekend…

By billn on December 14, 2020 #degustation

weekend wines...
This weekend’s…

A strong couple of wines for this weekend’s successful re-run of the Hospices de Beaune 2020 wine-auction – only 1 month late – the auction that is, not these two wines! Some thoughts on the auction tomorrow when I’ve had the chance to peruse the full detail.

2017 Sébastien Giroud, Pouilly-Loché
DIAM10 for this wine…
A warm depth of faintly spiced aroma – but with a support that seems structural and fresh. Mouth-filling, lovely texture, flavours framed with a little salinity. Last time tasted I’m sure this was more open, today it’s direct and a little more mineral. Wide fishing, modestly mineral here too. Excellent, but already for keeping a little – give it a couple more years.
Rebuy – Yes

2002 Varoilles, Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Clos des Varoilles
A cork where the worm of the corkscrew is clearly going to pull through the centre of the cork – the sides welded into place. So I go for the ah-so – still, a far from perfect choice as the cork, anyway, chooses the break in half. At least the last part comes out in one piece!
Some browning at the rim – it looks like there’s some measure of maturity here. The nose is lovely – deep, mature, turned-over earth and dried leaves yet still a little floral perfume too, lovely! Mouth-filling, open, layered, with a nice bite of acidity and a long width of finishing flavour – there’s fine density of flavour here, which, like the nose, has a nice floral lift to it. Really super – I remember a magnum of 02 Gevrey 1er Romanée that disappointed from this producer – doubly so, as I’ve two more in the cellar! Hopefully, given how good this is, that was only a cork issue. Day two the nose is less attractive – a little brett creeping into the aromas – fortunately, it still tastes super.
Rebuy – Yes

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