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Clos de Tart – 2013

DSC05581Tasted in Morey with Sylvain Pitiot, 27th November, 2014.

Clos de Tart
7 Route des Grands Crus
21220 Morey St.Denis
Tel: +33 3 80 34 30 91
www.clos-de-tart.com

Sad to see Sylvain in his last weeks as winemaker at Clos de Tart, though I think it will be equally interesting to see how Jacques Desvauges takes up the challenge of the Clos in 2015. I honestly think of CdT as the domaine with the highest attention to detail in the whole of Burgundy – every aspect of cultivation, production and finally the bottling and packaging of their product – and that is largely down to Sylvain Pitiot. I may not think the wine always as perfect as it could be, but that is about certain winemaking choices made by Sylvain, but there is no lack of attention to detail that can be blamed…

I wish Sylvain all the fun and enjoyment in his retirement and next projects.

Sylvain on 2013:
“The wines made with whole clusters had faster malos than the others despite using the same barrels for all. We saw only 23 hl/ha yield, though that’s almost double the 12 hl/ha that we saw in 2012. Poor flowering, couleur and a long cold veraison are some of the reasons for the low yields. We harvested on the 8th October without hail damage and without rot – small clean grapes for our 23 hl/ha. The best triage is made before harvest – de-budding et cetera – triage should just be the finesse at the end.

“The wines are really much more impressive than the weather led us to expect – though in the grand terroirs there are no bad wines, just grand and petit wines made in easy or hard years.”

The ‘wines’…

“We have really enormous differences between the parcels that make up Clos de Tart this year.”

Sylvain prepared the table in the cellar with half a dozen blind samples which would make up the blend of the Clos de Tart 2013 – they were numbered from 1 to 7 – but for some reason there was no number 3, I kept meaning to ask why but…
After we tasted them he told me which each component was, which I include after each note.

Number 1:
A deep cushioned and complex nose. Full and concentrated, slightly padded – simply everything about this shouts great wine, including the ‘wow’ length…
“Bottom, middle of the Clos – vieilles-vignes.”

Number 2:
A higher-toned nose of less weight and faintly volatile red fruit. Time in the glass and the volatile aspect is gone. Lots of gas on the tongue which gives the impression of more tannin – a fuller mouth-feel (more whole cluster?) and, again, fantastic length.
“Bottom of the slope on limestone. 100% whole cluster – vieilles-vignes.”

Number 4:
Another high-toned nose, but this time tighter, despite a nice floral interest. Gas again, this time the fruit is a higher-toned floral thing that reflects the nose. Again super-long…
“Ostria acuminata limestone from middle of the slope – 40% whole clusters here – vieilles-vignes.”

Number 5:
The nose is high-toned and tight, only very slowly adding some depth. More direct and a little more mineral – the tannin is more modest here, but silken…
“From the high part of the Clos made with 100% whole cluster”

Number 6:
High-toned, this time with some obvious oak notes. Lithe and direct flavour – even more than the last wine. Very good flavour in the mid-palate and finish…
“Young vines, 28 years-old ‘But not the greatest selection. Bien but not très bien.’ Not always in the final selection, but some years a little is included…”

Number 7:
Another tight aromatic. Another lithe and direct wine – almost half-way between the last 2. Plenty of tannin but less massive than the last. Fine line of finishing flavour.
“Very young vines from own massale selection, ages 15 and 8 years.”

No ‘vin de presse’ will be included.

The Expected Blend:
A discreet but complex nose with slowly evolving floral notes. Full, round and absolutely multidimensional. Plenty of tannin and very slowly lingering flavour. Bravo, great wine!

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