Tasted in Meursault with Jean-Pierre Latour, 23 October 2019
6 Route D974
Tel: +33 3 80 21 21 43
Domaine Latour-Giraud has been located in these buildings on the route nationale in Meursault since the 1830s. The origins of the family in Meursault goes back much further – since the late 1680s – that they know of! The Latours came together with the Girouds, by marriage, in 1958.
This is an 11 hectare domain producing 85% whites, of-course with vines centred around Meursault – their villages cuvée is the most important in terms of volume, but we shouldn’t forget that they have 2.5 hectares of the iconic premier cru of Genevrières too – “That’s our emblematic wine,” says Jean-Pierre.
“I work like my father did,” says Jean-Pierre, “He never used hebicides, working the soil so I never changed that. I could say that we are organic but we don’t have certification. I’m looking for purity, precision and freshness but with some richness of flavour – we have always done a little batonnage.”
This is a domaine that predominantly exports its wines.
Jean-Pierre on 2018:
“2018 was a year that had a large period of heat and a period of dryness, but there was plenty of rain in the winter and spring that preceded that – fortunately! We had a great reserve of water – unlike in 2019 where this reserve was missing – and then we had two heatwaves! But in 2018 we had grapes that weren’t growing until a good heavy rain, 12-13 August, allowed those grapes to fill – and we had plenty to fill, as the flowering had been practically perfect. So the volume we ended up with was a surprise but with balance and good definition for the wines. I think it’s a very lovely vintage.”
Excellent wines in 2018 on this first visit – all the Meursaults very distinct from one another, and the reds were tasty too!
2018 Bourgogne Chardonnay
All from the commune of Meursault, to be bottled around February.
Wide, yellow fruit, faintly spiced – the aroma betrays the origins of the grapes – excellent. Full, nicely sweeping lines with a growing intensity. This has a lovely intensity of finish too – very tasty wine – lovely.
2018 Meursault Cuvée Charles-Maxime
Named after two grandfathers – the Latour and the Giraud from which the domaine takes its name. 7 different parcels that offer a round view of the village.
This has a little more compact nose but of clarity and a little ginger spice. More depth to this texture, playing over the palate very well. Mouth-watering but from a fine and concentrated core of flavour. That’s another great finish – really a nice impact here.
2018 Meursault Narvaux
More high-toned width, finely spiced, this has an extra elegance. More drive and energy, nice lines – more like the Bourgogne than the Meursault, with lovely dimensions of mid-palate flavour. Fresh, pure and delicious – excellent!
2018 Meursault 1er Bouchères
A deeper nose, more golden, slightly toasted but at the same time mineral. Really quite some volume and freshness – a very open wine when the nose was leading me to expect more weight and fat. This is really lovely, complex – a delightful wine over the palate – practically dancing! What a great finish too – excellent!
2018 Meursault 1er Poruzots
This nose seems to fit more aptly with the palate of the last wine – open, floral, more airy but a certain backbone too – it’s a fine invitation. Incisive, mineral, more acid-forward, a wine of energy and direction. Classic Poruzots and again excellent wine.
2018 Meursault 1er Charmes
Half dessus and half top of the vineyard. But not the bottom part that was reclassified in 1974…
Open, calm, faintly floral. Hmm – wide, nicely concentrated, beautiful balance – there is freshness and complexity here without the breathless approach of the Poruzots. A super persistence of finish here that goes on with a long, slow diminuendo. Excellent Charmes.
2018 Meursault 1er Genevrières
All from the top part but three different parcels.
Modest with, airy, fine vibrant depth to this elegant and enticing nose. Hmm, mouth-filling, mineral at the base, melting flavour, faintly spiced, perfectly packaged – generous in the middle. Great finish, excellent wine – maybe even more than that!
2018 Meursault 1er Perrières
Ooh – now that’s good! Airy – but with nice aromatic direction, not so wide but gorgeous. Mouth-filling, fine texture, mineral of-course, a wine that only slowly, begrudgingly melts over the palate – but to fine effect. Fine Perrières here – exactly as you would wish. A super concentration and persistence in the finish.
2018 Puligny-Montrachet 1er Champs Canet
‘The closest vines to Perrières’
Slightly toasty, fresh, but essentially a little tight. Big, nice energy and clarity – there is action here, interest, supple, and with a nice finishing flavour. The finish is extra vs the rest – that’s a great finish, profound after a more modest middle flavour.
Made since 96, trying to push what’s possible by taking older vines – more than 50 yo – vines with a maximum 4 clusters, on-third new oak – all the others were 25%. It doesn’t make a great deal of sense commercially as it’s only about 20% more expensive and there’s much more difference that that vs the general cuvée – just about 1000 bottles only.
A fine depth of aroma – not the widest – here it’s more compact. Wider – more insistent, perfect texture, more mineral, a little more profound the flavour. A growing wave – a big wave – of finishing flavour. Great!
All destemmed, 4-5 days of cooling to 13°C before the onset of fermentation, ‘no additives.’
2018 Pommard Cuvée Carmen
Racked 2 weeks ago.
Ooh – that’s a big, bright, bouncy clean fruit. In the mouth too – round, a modest tannin at the base – good energy and clarity of tasty fruit. Delicious
2018 Meursault 1er Caillerets
There are only two producers today, since Coche replanted his part to chardonnay, here and Mikulski.
Hmm, a lovely vibration of fine fruit here – such an invitation. Fuller but also more open. Modest trannin – great shape and great flavour. Excellent wine.
2018 Pommard 1er Refene
This is actually quite airy for such a solar terroir – pretty red fruits – not full power – it’s a nice invitation. Supple, concentrated, mouth-filling wine. This has a lovely shape and freshness. I love this finish – long, sweeping a suggestion of salinity. Excellent.
2018 Volnay 1er Clos des Chênes
Such a deep colour. Ripe but borderline tight dark-red fruit. Mouth-filling – such volume, faintly tannic at the base – you might think that this was the Pommard – a big wine as befits its place and the vintage but never too much in any direction. Super.