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Arnoux-Lachaux – 2013

DSC05637Tasted in Vosne-Romanée with Charles Lachaux, 3rd December, 2014.

Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux
3, Route Nationale 74
21700 Vosne-Romanée
Tel: +33 3 80 61 08 41+33 3 80 61 08 41
www.arnoux-lachaux.com

Charles on 2013:
“In terms of yields we had everything in 2013 – up and down depending on the parcel. We’ve been growing grass between the rows for 15 years and I’m sure that this reduced the average size of the grapes a little as it makes for competition for the water. We actually dropped a little fruit also in August to keep correct yields.

“We used a minimum of 40% whole clusters in 2013. It was complicated for malolactic fermentations as, given the later harvest, our cellars were already cool when the fruit was brought in – our Clos de Vougeot only finished 2 weeks ago!”

The wines…

The Bourgogne was bottled, the villages wines assembled, and the rest lay in their barrels. All the wines were tasted from new oak, the final bottlings will have much more modest carpentry. In the early 2000’s, I found many wines from this domaine to have an almost buttery texture (presumably from oak) that I didn’t really like – none of that here – just consistently excellent wines. There’s nothing here that I wouldn’t happily have in my cellar – one of the best cellars in 2013…

2013 Bourgogne Pinot Fin
Raised in 2 year-old barrels and vinified with 70% whole clusters.
Pretty red fruit that’s fresh and ripe. This shows very good density – fine texture too. A fine start!

2013 Vosne-Romanée
Tasted from new barrel, the final assembly will see only 20% though.
Deep colour. The nose is also deep – and spicy, though not obviously oaky. There is a little oak texture though but really fine flavour development too. The flavour seems to tail-off quite quickly but then holds a more discreet but very long note.

2013 Vosne-Romanée Les Maizières
The vines are on the limit of the Vosne appellation – move a little further and they would be Clos de Vougeot!
A higher-toned, more floral aromatic – really a picture-perfect Vosne. Super texture and very fine fruit, whole cluster complexity in the mid-palate and just a little oak in the finish. Excellent!
2013 Nuits St.Georges Les Poisets
From 60 year-old vines under Les Cailles – lots of millerandes here. 40 whole cluster and 25% new oak.
Darker and deeper fruit. Fine tannin, muscular and fresh, with cool fruit and a lovely complexity with a hint of both flowers and salt. A really tasty wine – super!

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Les Procès
30% new oak and 40% whole cluster.
The nose delivers a width of complex if more modest depth. Wide in the mouth too – plenty of extra flavour dimension and clearly longer finishing. Nice.

2013 Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Chaumes
50% whole cluster and 50% new oak – this was a very late-finishing malo, so it’s not yet been sulfured.
Much more aromatic depth. The oak texture is more forward but it’s buffered with very juicy fruit – lovely, lovely mid-palate dimension here. Super!

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos des Corvées Pagets
Again, 50% whole clusters and 50% new oak.
Here is just a little reduction but with fine, high-toned aromas behind. Lovely, lovely fruit – fresh but deep and ripe too – lovely depth. Lovely length too – this is a beauty!

2013 Vosne-Romanée 1er Aux Reignots
100% whole clusters in the fermentation and 80% new oak elevage.
A wide nose that suggests malo to me but it was finished in May – so let’s say ‘herb’ – plenty of whole cluster references too. Full and round in the mouth but absolutely dynamic too. Extra concentration in the mid-palate before slowly fading. Good…

2013 Latricières-Chambertin
70% wholes clusters and 80% new wood.
A very fine and mineral nose with fine ripe fruit too – overall a gorgeous aromatic complexity. In the mouth too, this is fresh and dynamic, complex and elegant. Another beauty!
2013 Echézeaux
From les Rouges du Bas. 60% whole cluster and 80% new wood.
Aromatic width and an obvious Vosne-spice. Vibrant and complex – no fat – a wine of energy and modest tannic grip. The finish is different – here there is shape. Really super!

2013 Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Suchots
Picked the same day as the domaine’s RSV, only 50% whole cluster and 80% new oak.
Here is a more modest aromatic, yet it appears concentrated and faintly spiced. A bigger shape in the mouth yet still without obvious fat – just a faint padding.This is long and complex yet very discrete today. Just a little ok in the finish.

2013 Romanée St.Vivant
This nose has more depth and of darker fruit too – only slowly des it add complexity in the glass. Wide, sitting beautifully on the palate – indeed washing over the palate – there’s a floral complexity too. It changes again after the mid-palate – it’s extra-long. This is not ‘more’ wine, it is an ‘extra’ wine. Brilliant.

A few from bottle…

2012 Chambolle-Musigny
Deep dark fruit with some roast aspects – lots of aromatic power. Wide and concentrated with a faint underpinning of tannin texture. This is a big, but slightly tight wine – we will have to wait for delicacy – but there’s a slowly growing floral note that augers well.

2011 Nuits St.Georges Les Poisets
A faint pyrazine note. Round and friendly in the mouth with very good complexity and a pretty floral finish.

2011 Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Chaumes
A brighter and more floral nose. Mouth-filling and with more intensity. Lovely length. Super!

2008 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos des Corvées Pagets
Blind – I got got the vintage.
A more mature nose with some leaf, complexity and spice. Very good acidity and a narrower delivery but of beautiful fruit – lots of tannin still.

2008 Clos de Vougeot
Blind – I had no guess – it was the much younger fruit aroma that caught me. Re-reading my note, it seems obvious now!
A deep, concentrated and faintly spiced nose of young fruit, with similar acidity and tannin expression to the last wine. Direct, intense and with some complexity and a little salt too.

2 responses to “Arnoux-Lachaux – 2013”

  1. gilberto

    Bill, I guess this sentence needs a second negation:
    “There’s nothing here that I would happily have in my cellar”
    I would -> I wouldn’t .Otherwise I don’t understand the final comment “one of the best cellars in 2013…”
    🙂

Agree? Disagree? Anything you'd like to add?