Tasted in Chassagne-Montrachet 01 October 2014, with Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey.
PYCM on 2013:
“As a vigneron, I can only say that 2013 was very complicated; humid with pressure from mildew – we often had to treat the vines using back-packs because the ground was too wet for machinery. It was a vintage that required a lot of manual work, and for that reason I call it a vigneron’s vintage, because it is those people who put the effort in, in the vines, Saturdays and Sundays that have been most rewarded. Actually 2012 and 2013 were similar in that respect and had me at my limits, so it was nice to get a ‘calmer’ vintage in 2014, despite the hail.
“I find 2013 a ‘classical’ vintage for white Burgundy, one with good freshness – quite similar to 2007 here. It has a lower intensity and richness versus 2012 and probably 2014 too, but because of that the terroir differences are more obvious.
“Depending on the cuvée, I blocked 20-30% of the malolactic fermentations to best preserve the acidity. Of-course, everything here has elevage in large (350 litre) barrels, and I practice no battonage.
“The paradox of 2013 is that the grapes were often at the limit of cleanliness (botrytis, et cetera) and not always with the highest ripeness, yet they have a certain richness.”
PY had bottled his Saint Aubins in September, but the rest will (most likely) wait until April. The Pulignys were the most subdued here – but in very impressive company. I was mostly smitten by the St.Aubins and Meursaults, but for the lucky few, the Chevalier is brilliant.
Despite my general lack of enthusiasm for tinkering with malos, in the end, I ran out of superlatives, you should buy all that you are allocated – I found this to be the greatest white wine cellar in the Côte d’Or in 2013 – as such, it made no sense to me, to pick out individual wines…
2013 St.Aubin Le Bon
A blend of multiple parcels, but all from this same villages lieu-dit, with 3 generations of vines. In totality, this is the largest parcel of the domain at over 1 hectare.
The nose is wide and fresh – but faintly padded with faint oak notes too. Fresh here too, it rolls over the tongue with ease and for SA villages it has a simply amazing extra dimension of intense flavour in the mid-palate. Wow villages!
2013 St.Aubin 1er Chatonnière
The nose is fruitier and brighter with a ripe citrus core. Wide and detailed with an obvious agrumes flavour that becomes ever-more glorious as it peaks even after you swallow. There’s a more modest width in the finish – but not length. Really lovely…
2013 St.Aubin 1er En Remilly
Again there’s a perceptible reduction though with more weight of fruit underneath. There’s more weight in the mouth too. No less complexity than the Chatonnière, but a clear extra concentration. A long, stony fading note…
2013 St.Aubin 1er Les Perrières
A new appellation chez PY, 2013 being the first bottling after just over 0.4 hectares came from his aunt. It was a mix of pinot (0.17ha) and chardonnay (0.26ha), but PY relates that the pinot wasn’t in great shape, so he’s pulled them out and will let the ground rest for 2-3 years before replanting with chardonnay.
The nose isn’t super-deep but there’s a wide and interesting aroma of agrumes. In the mouth it’s fresh, wide and super-energetic – yet again with a fine ‘poof!’ of extra mid-palate flavour-impression. Lovely wine…
2013 Chassagne-Montrachet Les Encegnières
Here is aromatic width and depth, and an obvious freshness of Chassagne herbs. A hint of CO2 prickle on the tongue yet there’s still plenty of richness to buffer. Bigger-shaped wine here versus those of St.Aubin.
2013 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Les Chenevottes
The nose has less impact but seems all the more complex for it – faintly savoury notes mix with the fruit. Ouf! Super acid-intensity and a flavour-profile that brilliantly grows over your palate. Yum!
2013 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Les Baudines
A brighter, higher-toned nose – more transparent I think. Very wide, composed, yet with super acidity and, again, there is a peak of flavour to mount after you swallow. I think I will run out of superlatives…
2013 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Les Caillerets
Reasonable aromatic width but with super depth. In the mouth, here is more heft and intensity – packaged together. There’s a weight of extract on the finish too. A wine that you really should wait for, tasty as it is today…
2013 Puligny-Montrachet 1er Champsgains
The last parcel harvested for the domaine in 2013.
The nose is wide and fresh though with a richer core of fruit than those that went before. Fuller and rounder in the mouth with more mid-palate heft. There’s a wide impression that travels right through the core of this wine. Lots of extract here.
2013 Puligny-Montrachet 1er La Garenne
Another new wine from 2013, from PY’s aunt.
Very faint toasted bread – the first wine with an obvious oak component – plenty of high-toned width too and below just a trace of reduction. Full shape but with nice energy. There are higher-toned flavours too – it manages to coat the teeth with fine flavour. Yum!
2013 Meursault Narvaux
A perfect, freshly minted Meursault nose. Round in the mouth despite faintest prickle of CO2 – but super freshness and intensity are apparent. The concentration in the finish is super. Super-yum!
2013 Meursault 1er Genevrières
One of the few wines with a clear florality to the aromas, round and one more with a little to say from the barrel – it keeps changing in the glass – I love that. Full, round and just a little padded – yet with growing intensity that comes from the core – super acidity too. Brilliant wine again, and with super length. Wow…
2013 Meursault 1er Les Perrières
PY’s Perrières is from the lower part of the vineyard, his Genevrières from the higher part – they have virtually the same position (height) on the Meursault hillside.
An almost textured aroma – maybe a little SO2 – but in seconds its gone and the aromas seem both smoother and wider. Width in the mouth, but super intensity right from the start too. Grows more in the mid-palate – but slowly, with less bang! Fine as this is, I find it a little more contemplative than the more dynamic Genevrières today – despite super acidity.
Just one barrel – so full malolactic here.
The nose is wide, less deep but with plenty of high-toned interest. There is weight and silkiness to the texture – but you’ve hardly the time to linger in appreciation because the energy and intensity quickly assert control – though lithe and dynamic remain my thoughts in the finish. A wine apart from the rest and easily the most mineral. Super!
Less wide, but the aromas here are more about depth – subtly complex. Rounder and fuller but with a similar energy as the Corton-Charlemagne. Wow! This mixes dynamism and complexity. Not the richness of my anticipation for the label – just a coiled bundle of energy. Superb!
A wide, deep and very contemplative nose. Ouf! Here is a considerable extra concentration, but still with the structure and acidity to balance the weight. The flavour quickly curls-up towards the narrower, more stony-flavoured finish. Very, very long. Re-reading this I’m not sure I’ve packed-in sufficient superlatives – because it was a superlative wine!