Tasted in Marsannay with Philippe Brun & Bruno Clair, 07 December 2020.
Philippe and Bruno on 2019:
“We were about 25% down in volume in 2019 – certainly vs 2018. Here it’s 2020 that’s more catastrophic, it’s only half a harvest. The timing of the harvest was relatively classic, starting 11 September but we had to speed up as the second week as the maturities really started to speed up. Much nicer tannins than 2010 I think. But a strong dryness in the vintage. New for the region is that a lot of maturity is by concentration so technical materurity more than true phenolic maturity.”
Another year where I remove my hat to this team. And as in other years, their Bèze is one of my wines of the vintage!
All the wines are still on their lees, only 3 or 4 have been racked. Bottling is currently planned for April-May or thereabouts:
An assembly of multiple parcels
The nose is of perfumed red fruit – nice clarity. Open, a nice fresh attack, layered with tasty energy. That’s a lovely starting point.
‘On the rock!’
Deeper and showing extra perfume – that’s a lovely and very attractive nose. Also a good attack, here with extra depth to the flavour. More intense finshing. Super – bravo Marsannay!
2019 Marsannay Charmes au Pretes
First vintage in 2018 – it was blended before into the previous wine before.
A faint reduction here but quickly filling the glass – lovely. That’s a little more intense again, almost sparkly energy in the mouth, a vibration of finishing flavour too. Delicious…
‘Always the most tannic but they are very supple in 19 though…’
Perfumed, just a touch of the whole clusters are visible here too. Lovely, lovely, lovely – so juicy – delicious flavour, only modest tannin. That’s a great Marsannay
2019 Marsannay Les Longeroies
Less aromatic intensity but a good width of clarity. More structural, similar tannin at the base – a very different and delicious finish.
2019 Fixin Champs Perdrix
A more intense red. Wide, more intense again, structured but almost juicy once more. Layers of fine red-fruited waves over the palate in the finish. I love this, despite a slightly hard – I call it characterful – side. Excellent wine.
2019 Chambolle-Musigny Veroilles
Just above Bonnes-Mares, ‘it suffers a lot in the hot vintages.’
Wide, elegant, red-fruited, only suggesting an extra perfume. In the mouth there’s a short period with some reduction but then it’s gone. A little textural richness, only at the end of the tongue a little tannin – but no grain. Really elegant and delicious at the finish, lots of concentration to start but all nicely done – lovely Chambolle.
2019 Morey St.Denis En la Rue de Vergy
A beautiful nose, of elegant fruit depth and even more elegantly perfumed width – yes! Supple, mouth-filling, a little richness to this wine, great texture but fine freshness too. Always a favourite and excellent this year too – the finish eventually with a little more structure.
2019 Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er Cru Les Jarrons
Produced from the young vines of Dominode, previously sold as 1er cru. Labelled this way as didn’t want a young and old vine cuvée – but ‘young’ actually means 33 vs the main plantation that dates from 1920s and 30s
A totally different nose, vibrant, deep darker-red and much more mineral. Plenty of attack – some reduction and a faint amount of gas too. Wide and intense, the same dark fruzit.
Extra perfume some more wc showing here too. Deep. Broad, modestly structural, long, tasty darker fruit – indeed here with a clarity of brilliant fruit – great wine!
2019 Chambolle-Musigny 1er Les Charmes
The first vintage for this wine. It’s been racked as the reduction was becoming stronger
A faint gas, redder fruit – very elegant fruit. I like the cut here, the mineral base and a lovely width of nice-textured flavour The flavour widening a lot in the finish too.
From multiple parcels: Carougeots mainly plus two other smaller parcels, including a little Belair 1er cru and Petits Fontenys
A fine depth of slightly darker aroma. Wide – lots of fresh energy but also some depth of concentration and flavour. That’s a very lovely ever-widening finish. That’s a great villages Gevrey!
2019 Vosne-Romanée Les Champs Perdrix
‘A cold place there’s a current of air, it needs 10 days more than Romanée-Conti to ripen – never a problem with maturity here, today, it didn’t always used to be like that…’ Another wine that was racked due to some reduction Practically 80-years-old now.
Perfumed again, a little of the wc showing, but only a little. Mouth-filling but with a certain clarity of flavour too. Really strongly finishing – such a large and growing intensity of flavour. Great length too – excellent.
‘Here on the rock, almost a Chambolle in Gevrey.’ Next to Ruchottes. A real clos, Below the Clos des Issarts.
That’s a lovely nose, red, floral – finely perfumed – some obvious depth. In the mouth a finesse of tannin no grain, slowly mouth-watering. Impressively classy wine. A burst of finishing freshness and a little more tannin is the last impression. Probably a great Gevrey…
2019 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Petit Chapelle
‘Quite old vines.’ More clay in the soil here. Petite indeed – 0.25 ha here
A nose with a trace of reduction but a suggestion of fresh, darker fruit too. Some gas. More mouth-filling – possibly due to the gas – but the layers of flavour a simply beautiful. Bigger finishing, intense and perfumed. A great finish here – excellent wine!
2019 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Cazetiers
Planted in 1958
Starting narrower but with impressive aromatic depth before filling out the top notes with a big invitation. Nice drive – a wine with direction and an open clarity to the flavour – slightly cool fruited. A bit more finishing power here, slightly saline. Excellent again…
Planted in 1957, with same plant material as the Cazetiers, planted by Bruno’s father. ‘Unlike the brother this can open and close’
Starting narrow in the top notes, deeper and wider at the base though. Super intense, driving. Some wc. Great wine – this is clearly of grand cru standard in 2019. Bravo!
Old vines, 2/3 from 1912
Gorgeously perfumed fruit – floral – suggesting minerality too – a great nose. Wider, fresher more structural but absolutely nothing of hardness here. The broadest finshing, also the most delicious finishing. Grand Vin!
In 2016 Bruno recovered the rest of the family parcel, so here is all the Bonnes-Mares of Morey – well almost – Bruno still sends 2 barrels to Fougeray de Beauclair each year.
Fresh and deep aromas though more obviously compact than the Béze. Mouth-filling – a sense of concentration and volume but also more compact vs the Bèze. Massive but despite that there’s a nice clarity in the middle – oh, and a great finish – not showing as much as the, today, incomparable Bèze!
“I’m not sure the 18s have a long life ahead of them but the 2019s, oh yes…”
2019 Marsannay Blanc
A deep nose, a little anise perhaps. Broad, some richness, layers of flavour in the middle. A suggestion of finishing minerality. I’d like a bit more energy today.
2019 Marsannay Blanc Source des Roches
A nose with more freshness. The palate too – now that’s more interesting and mouth-watering too. Touched by some oak today but here’s still a kick of finishing intensity. That’s more interesting for sure.
2019 Marsannay Longeroies Blanc
‘Really we are planted almost directly onto the rocks…’
Finer and narrower. Also in the mouth – extra intense and much more mineral – a wine of some drive and fine shape – this is very good! I love the finish here and it’s quite tannic at the end…
2019 Pernand-Vergelesses Blanc
From Boutières- planted in 98.
That’s a very perfumed wine, lots of depth to this aroma too. Some gas. A clarity of flavour here – plenty of minerality again – very wide, perfumed finishing again and very long. Too much perfume? It’s anyway delicious!
2019 Morey St.Denis Blanc
Above Bonnes-Mares, so hardly any harvest.
Les width and less intensity but no lack of aromatic depth here. Driving, waves of flavour. That will be really a very delicious bottle – excellent wine!
Ooh, that’s a vibrantly wide nose – already clear that we have a different level of wine in the glass! Full, round. Vibrant in the mouth too – a great finish in what is, in total, a completely excellent 2019.