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l’Arlot – 2013

DSC05444Tasted in Premeaux with Jacques Desvauges and Géraldine Godot, 07 November, 2014.

Domaine de L’Arlot
21700 Nuits-Saint-Georges
Tel: +33 3 80 61 01 92
www.arlot.com

Although it had been relatively common knowledge (locally) that Jacques was leaving Arlot for a domaine in Morey St.Denis, for some time it had been assumed by many that he would move to Lambrays, but the day after it was officially announced that Sylvain Pitiot was to retire at the end of the year, and that Jacques Desvauges would be his replacement at Clos de Tart, I paid him and his successor a visit in Premeaux. Géraldine was previously winemaker at Maison/Domaine Alex Gambal having joined Alex in 2009 after Fabrice and Sophie Laronze went to set-up their own domaine.

Jacques is still officially in charge at Arlot until the end of the year, his replacement, Géraldine Godot arrived at the domaine 1st of September – but ‘only to observe and acclimatise’ – that said, Jacques and Géraldine shared duty with the pipette, and it seems to me that they interact very well with one another. I think that two quotes add up the situation:

Jacques: “I’m really excited about the challenge of Clos de Tart, but at the same time I will be very sad to leave l’Arlot.”
Géraldine: “Of-course I’m only here as an observer for now, and that’s not easy, but I have patience.”

The wines…

The domaine brought in only 20 hl/ha in total in 2013, down 30% on the average.

2013 Côte de Nuits Villages Aux Leuray Blanc
A 0.25 ha parcel that was planted to pinot but being partly north-facing was replanted with chardonnay in 2006. This raised in older barrels.
Wide and deep aromas that are a little cushioned with some oak notes – quite inviting. Soft, slowly insinuating acidity, but quite enough acidity.

2013 Nuits St.Georges La Gerbotte Blanc
Now 18 years-old, forming the southern part of the Clos l’Arlot – next to the Clos Marechale. 30cm of soil here over a ‘huge plate of limestone.’
Wide nose with a little ripe fruit at the core. More interesting, mineral and faintly saline. Rather super flavour here!

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos l’Arlot Blanc
Actually a mix of La Gerbotte and others in the Clos l’Arlot – Gerbotte being the coolest location – temperature!
A width of more herby aroma. More mineral in the mouth again, and very fine mouth-watering acidity.

Les Rouges…

2013 Côte de Nuits Villages Clos du Chapeau
A 1.6 hectare plot in Comblanchien.
A little reduction, but this is quite silky and has super depth and lovely persistence of flavour. Very pretty fruit and some creamy oak adds up to very tasty wine.

2013 Nuits St.Georges Petite l’Arlot
Young vines at the top of the hill in the Clos – often the first parcel harvested.
A nose with nice red fruit and faint herbs. Wide with very good depth of flavour – more tannic grip – but overall far from a ‘tannic wine.’ Tasty!

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Les Petits Plets
From young vines (below 25 years) selected from the Clos des Fôrets.
A wider nose here with more energy but less depth than the Petite l’Arlot. In the mouth, lots of width and energy again – this time with more depth of fruit and length. Super wine for ‘young vines.’

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos de l’Arlot
The vines now average over 70 years. Only 5.5 from the usual 10 barrels in 2013.
There’s a faint reduction. In the mouth the flavour is more linear and direct – less width but more energy and complexity. Delicious.

2013 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos des Fôrets
A relatively massive vineyard monopoly of 7.2 hectares, with three distinct soil types, all harvested and vinified separately. Actually there are 7 separate cuvées, on of which becomes the Petits Plets. The following was a rough assembly:
Dark, opulent fruit. Fine depth, detail and energy. The whole ensemble gets wider and wider even after you swallow. Long, long, long…

2013 Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Suchots
From 0.85 hectares at the border of Richebourg, vines planted in 45, 50 and 87.
A completely different aromatic, with a width and depth of spicy fruit. Good palate width, yet there is a more compact sensation after the ‘Fôrets’ – though not in terms of flavour complexity. This tastes great and the last drops in the glass smell super!

2013 Romanée Saint-Vivant
From 24 rows of vines that face Romanée-Conti and run only half-way to the village.
A deeper width of fruit. Super texture – more velvet than silk. Faintly saline and super-contemplative, indeed super, super contemplative. Not a ‘loud’ wine but a gorgeous one.

A few 12s to finish…

2012 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos de l’Arlot
Also only 5 barrels in 2012 – 11 hl/ha.
A real note of perfume on the nose. Really concentrated with a growing width of flavour – it’s a very similar shape to that of the 2013 Fôrets. Big wine with fine tannin – super!

2012 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos des Fôrets
Also a very fine, high-toned nose – this time more fruit than perfume. Round, mouth-filling and with slowly increasing intensity. Here is more fruit complexity and length vs the Clos l’Arlot.

2012 Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Suchots
A faint reduction. Round and a little smaller than the ‘Fôrets’ – complex but tighter than the other 12s – needs a lot of time in the glass.

2012 Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos de l’Arlot Blanc
Wow – a punch of fresh fruit, even some aniseed. Mineral, wide and with lovely complexity – grows ever-more higher-toned flavours. Ouf! This will be great!

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