Château Pommard – 2019


Emmanuel Sala 2021 Château PommardTasted in Pommard with Emmanuel Sala, 09 June 2021.

Château de Pommard
15, rue Marey Monge
BP 30018 – 21630 Pommard
Tel: +33 3 80 22 12 59
More reports with Château Pommard

I’ve missed a vintage here but the team have been very busy in the intervening two years: There’s been a massive work on refinishing the château’s perimeter walls and now the major buildings too – starting with the château/home of Michael Baum and then moving on to the ‘reception château’ and now the cuverie and other outbuildings. In greater Burgundy, I can only compare the scale of work here with the ambition shown by the team at the even larger project of the Château de la Chaize near the hill of Brouilly.

The current plan of works indicates that the cuverie work will be completed in 2022 and the hotel/reception/restaurant in 2023. As for the cuveries – there will be separate ones for the reds and whites and even a lift system to raise the tanks or barrels to allow for all operations by gravity. For now, and since 2017, the wines are made in a cuverie in Sainte-Marie-la-Blanche – 15km away – “It’s very practical,” says Emmanuel, “Except that it’s not here!

The day of my visit was the first day that people could book tasting visits at the château for many months – and a few visitors were arriving for appointments – but for an operation that has historically sold all of its production to visitors to the château one might expect the covid-dominated tourist landscape to be causing all sorts of problems, but Emmanuel is bullish on this point: “The market is actually in great shape here. We are not quite covering the total loss of sales to visitors but given that the château has been, and will be, closed for some time, practically all of our sales of today are through new routes to drinkers.

Emmanuel on 2020:
“The wall was a negative for the frost as the vines closest to the wall are the earliest to grow but in general, we had a little less damage than some of our neighbours. Even in the clos we had places not touched and others that were badly touched. Environmentally I’m against candles and their pollution, it’s cheaper to get 100 seasonal workers together to late prune…”

Emmanuel on 2019:
“Our Cuvée Simone is not yet bottled but the others are all done – but only 3 weeks ago. Today I’m using quite a lot less new barrels than when I first started here – up to 20% today – before it was double or even sometimes 100% in the case of Simone. All the range is certified organic (AB) starting with this 2019 vintage – actually the work in the domaine vines is biodynamic but our approach is not about anthroposophy, I want it to be about precision.

“We saw yields of only 22 hl/ha for the totality of the domaine – but these were wines that were much easier to vinify than 2018, and always tasted great during elevage – unlike the 2018s who were very difficult to taste until the end of the elevage when they became so friendly. I think it a finer and more elegant vintage than 2016 and certainly more Burgundian than the 2018s. It’s a vibrant vintage”

The wines…

A very successful result at the château in 2019. I find a number of wines to covet but would caution your ‘patience’ for most of the reds…

2019 Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Vines the other side of the chateau walls in the plain vs the other wines just not worked by horse.
A spiced warmth of barrel notes supporting a pretty red fruit. Supple, sweetly fruited – incredible concentration for the label. For the patient because of the level of oak but wow wine for the label.

A map of the various plots in the clos can be seen here.

2019 Pommard ‘Micault
1.29 ha of vines planted in 1987. The highest yield of the vintage here – 40 hl/ha – ‘always a little less colour.’
A suggestion of cushioned rose perfume. Supple, again with concentration and decent energy too. That’s a delicious wine – wide finishing – also for keeping a while to balance the oak and the whole cluster flavours. Very tasty wine and impressively long…

2019 Pommard ‘Grand Esprit
4.81 hectares – the middle of the clos – planted between 1970 and 1980.
More airy and floral. In the mouth, we are more in Pommard, more structural, but with a vibrant and expressive style – intense, the tannin is mainly hidden as there’s no grain here. A nice balance of austerity with invitation… A wine that’s also for keeping…

2019 Pommard ‘Nicolas-Joseph
The plot at the northern end of the clos, closest to Beaune and opposite Pommard’s Clos Blanc – 3.00 hectares of vines planted between 1943 and 2001 in a soil with less limestone than the previous wine.
That’s a lovely, caressing, nose – not fully forward but fully inviting. Vibrant wine again, concentrated again, opening with more clarity but also some modest barrel and more whole cluster in the middle flavours. Wide and impressive finishing again, here with an extra whole cluster accent.

2019 Pommard ‘75-Rows
0.85 hectares planted in 1962.
There’s a saline quality to this nose – plenty of whole-cluster perfume too. Hmm, supple, melting, growing slowly more intense, almost a caramel accent – this is an engrossing wine. Rose perfumed and faintly tannic finishing. That’s a great villages Pommard – as the house style demands for keeping. Bravo!
2019 Pommard ‘Chantrerie
2.41 ha, planted between 1940 and 2004.
A nose that starts with a waft of energy then tightens. Very different, the shape, the depth, the energy – I think of a very good Morey St.Denis when I taste this wine – such depth of flavour. Bravo wine, no doubt…

2019 Pommard ‘Clos Marey-Monge
The assembly of the various cuvées from within the clos.
A very fine aromatic purity here. Open, mouth-filling – full of energy too – but still structural and shaped. Holding an impressive finish – I like the clarity of this wine. Only in the finish is a faint reprise of tannin but it’s very long finishing too. Simply excellent wine, perhaps another bravo wine, with time…!

2019 Pommard ‘Simone
0.53 ha of vines planted in 1986. This is in tank and will be bottled next week.
Modest colour – a very impressive nose – freshness, clarity and an extra depth that is a vibrantly mineral/whole-cluster hybrid. Mouth-filling, framed with a very faint tannin, an inner energy to this wine too. Still vibrant and mineral/whole-cluster finishing and this flavour lasting for an age. The ‘Clos’ is the more delicious today but this is the most impressive – it could be a great, great wine – I’d return after 10 years and anticipate some greatness at 15-plus…

Now, a look at some of the Maison wines from here – also organic:

2019 Maranges 1er Clos des Loyeres
Three different parcels – an old a middle and a young – it’s the middle, a clone, that’s the least interesting, ‘but the assembly works really well’
30% whole cluster and you can see it easily in this attractive aroma. Supple yet also a little structural – some creaminess of barrel but also a depth of very attractive red-fruited flavour. That’s delicious – bravo Maranges!

2019 Nuits St.Georges
A very different style – a little more blue colour to the fruit and a slightly more structural impression too. Extra mouth-filling – ooh – that’s simply super – wider and super impressive – great finishing wine – that’s another simply excellent wine, and certainly great finishing…

2019 Chambolle-Musigny 1er Les Lavrottes
The only wine not vinified by Emmanuel
Again a very different wine – still the whole cluster perfume but of more architectural volume and a small reduction. Another mouth-filling wine – of fine balance and impressive fine complexity – almost granular. The finish is one that slowly unwinds in a more elegant style.

Les Blancs:
Using cork only, but a little thicker – 25mm not 24:

2019 Chassagne-Montrachet
From Chaumes – not Chaumées!
Hmm – that’s a nice invitation. There’s a cushioning of oak but also a sweet agrume fruit. In the mouth more classic, quite direct but widening and showing fine energy – in fact, a fine vibrancy of finishing flavour. Keep this a couple of years for the oak impression to fade. Round but powerful.

2019 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Morgeot
Here’s a nose that has an extra and more direct ripeness but then softens, slightly creamy – interesting. Wide, mouth-filling – more mineral, with power, some pineapple style. The finish is long too. This is very good wine, close to excellent…

2019 Ladoix Les Gréchons
Extra freshness and minerality augmented with a floral note too. Extra clarity, extra minerality. A small cushion to this texture, only here the oak starting to show. Vibrating with finishing energy – plenty of oak to finish. There are certainly less successful Charlemagnes than this excellent wine.

2019 Meursault 1er Les Charmes
This is a very Meursault nose – growing with a vibrant, almost reductive energy – that’s a great nose. Fresh, direct, a wine of power and cool fruit. Almost a little acidulated finishing flavour. That’s a really, really excellent wine – almost great.

2019 Corton-Charlemagne
Another nicely vibrant nose, also again with a mineral energy. Really mouth-filling the energy is extra here. Less serene, but oh-so vibrant. That’s a grand cru finishing energy – almost explosive. Simply super!

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