Some weekend wine – week 12 2024

By billn on March 26, 2024 #degustation

wines - week 12 2024

A slightly green weekend !!

2021 Chateau Thivin, Côte de Brouilly La Chapelle
This La Chapelle was the least green of all Thivin’s 2021s as tasted at the domain. But on this day, the pyrazine was quite pronounced. It didn’t work for me…
Rebuy – No

2019 Armand Heitz, St.Aubin 1er Murgers des Dents du Chien – Rouge!
I think that this is the only red from this vineyard – which presumably is what prompted them to write monopole on the label. I would understand ‘monopole’ if this was a Clos within the vineyard – and so named – but only for a colour change I’m surprised it’s allowed. So, a monopoly for sure – but a monopole?
Sealed with an impressive DIAM10 which is probably the reason that it starts a little reduced – 5 minutes later and all is good though. Deeply coloured – and a nose with lots of dark cherry freshness and even a suggestion of rolling tobacco. In the mouth, we have concentration and fluidity – such that there is only a modest generosity – but what deliciousness, accented with a modest sucrosity! The fruit flavours mirror the nose with dark cherry. It gives me the feeling that I’m tasting a red from a white terroir – like a Pernand red too – but this is simply excellent. I didn’t buy enough!!
Rebuy – Yes

And the 2004 project? Some you win, some you lose!

Catching up #3 – A Chablis Encore & the Burgundy water-table…

By billn on March 22, 2024 #degustation#travel pics#travels in burgundy 2024#vintage 2024

In January, I really didn’t have enough time in 3 weeks to visit all the Chablis domaines – or at least all the ones in my current list as it now extends to over 100 domaines! So I was back in ‘the north’ in March – with another trip planned for May!

In May, I’ll be mixing it up with a few visits in Irancy too.

La Chapelle de Vaupelteigne - March 2024
The view to La Chapelle de Vaupelteigne

On the Sunday I was in the Côte d’Or and I have to say that the flatter vineyards in the Côte de Beaune looked ready for ducks – there were a lot of vine ‘feet’ under water. Whilst the water in Chablis’ river Serein looked high on Monday, I still wasn’t prepared for the road closures on Tuesday as the river burst its banks to fill many of the flood-plains in the area. The rain hadn’t been so heavy in Chablis, rather in the surrounding Morvan countryside – as much as 70-80 miles away – and it takes about 3 days for the floodwaters to rise in Chablis.

Chablis itself wasn’t too badly affected but the village of La Chapelle de Vaupelteigne (above) was under water – only partly accessible for me by taking a route descending the hillside from Beine.

The weather calmed – indeed this week we have sunshine in Beaune – it’s a nice change! For now, Burgundians can’t right now complain about a lack of water – it’s double what was seen at the same stage in 2022 and 2023 – but instead they can complain that it’s 22°C in the afternoon 🙂

Catching up #2 – Transport & some bottles…

By billn on March 18, 2024 #degustation

It had to happen; after 19 years and 603k kilometres – bye-bye Scooby 2.

But all hail Scooby 3!

Scooby 2 was as strong as an ox – drivetrain – but 19x European salt-infused winters had left its corrosive mark on the underbelly of the car. Couple that to an almost certain cylinder head-gasket and timing chain replacement interval this year – the cost would have a multiple of multiples more than the worth of the car. It was time. My local dealer, for a time, will even display Scooby 2 in his showroom with a big sign proclaiming the mileage!

So Scooby 3: adaptive cruise, lane assist and so many other things ‘alien’ to me make for an annoying cacophony of beeps whilst underway – but I’m sure they will make me drive better – eventually! Plus there’s 35% lower fuel costs too. I don’t yet love Scooby 3 – but I have some grudging respect 🙂

You’ll be relieved to hear that, yes, there has been some!

I’ve only just opened the first of over a dozen bottles but my 20 years-on 2004 project has now opened – I’ll only publish my notes when all have been broached – wish me luck!

There have been others too. Some I took notes, others I left it too long so I can only remember if it was good, great or simply meh – but not give you a note. Anyway, how about starting with a small 2019-a-thon?:

2019 Frédéric Berne, Régnié Aux Bruyères
Oooh… A cushioned dark red fruit aroma to sink into, subtly with some graphite accents. In the mouth we have impressive scale – detail too – this is supple but also finely shaped. Great 2019s are ultra-wines – and here is one – Yes!
Rebuy – Yes

2019 Albert Grivault, Pommard 1er Clos Blanc
Dark, almost some old oak – a sweetness of red fruit too. Hmm, This melts over the palate, dark red fruit, sweetness. A full wine – deep and satisfying. Still plenty of barrel flavour and modest bitters too. Young oak but open and delicious.
Rebuy – Maybe

2019 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Aigrots
A deep, dark dirty oak – it’s really attractive! – slowly with air, rounding and becoming more fruited. Hmm, this is direct and mouth-watering – super texture, Supple, concentrated – that’s got energy and flavour dimension. It’s a great Beaune!
Rebuy – Yes

2019 Digioia-Royer, Chambolle-Musigny
Plenty of colour. Higher-toned aromatic – airy, with implied silk, some violet flowers. Large scale, structured but nothing hard – no less intensity than the 1ers – the finish here is the youngest of all with plenty of oak bitters but what a delicious wine – and probably longer lived, it’s certainly younger, than the two from the Côte de Beaune.
Rebuy – Yes

All the wines show a little of their elevage but that’s three delicious wines. And the others:

2020 Jean Dauvissat, Chablis 1er Côte de Lechet
What a delicious wine. Textural, generous too – possibly a bit too much of both for Chablis – but ultra-delicious wine!
Rebuy – Yes

2021 Gautheron, Chablis 1er Montmains Vieilles-Vignes
Oh god that’s so good, so fine, so precice – so ‘one less bottle that I have in the cellar!!’
Rebuy – Yes

1985 Guillermard-Dupont, Pommard
A very oxidative smelling cork disintegrates during the removal process. Of course the last third drops into the wine – but how is the wine? Actually, it starts balsamic, but just gets better – I drink a glass on each of three consecutive nights – the wine staying (glass) stoppered in the fridge – and it’s just so robust and tasty. I think I may have 2-3 more bottles of this. More care and planning required for the next cork!
Rebuy – No chance

weekend 5 2024 – Beaujolais training!

By billn on February 06, 2024 #degustation

a brace of 2019 Fleurie

I will start my tour of Beaujolais in a few days – so what about a little training in preparation?!

This was more a play-fight than a battle – both were wines that I would rebuy – but I was surprised how easily the Foillard won this particular match-up!

2019 Jean Foillard, Fleurie
A nice volume of aroma – and unlike the often ‘savoury’ nose chez Foillard that I was expecting, here is just cushioned pure fruit – and it’s lovely. There’s fine flavour here too – a little generosity to this silky texture and depth of fruit but all is balanced and absolutely delicious – particularly in the finish. That’s singing right now!
Rebuy – Yes

2019 Clos de la Riolette, Fleurie
A more direct nose, the fruit aromas are still welcoming though mixed with some herbed complexity today. In the mouth, I’m surprised how structural this wine has become – nothing worrying but it’s clearly a different beast to the comforting texture and fruit of the Foillard. It remains a delicious wine but one that’s certainly in a more structural phase – perhaps it will eventually become tighter too versus its youth. There’s no reason to think that it won’t re-emerge even better though.
Rebuy – Yes

It’s already week 4 of 2024 – best celebrate with some wine !!

By billn on January 28, 2024 #degustation

2019 Boris Champy

2019 Boris Champy, Hautes Côtes de Beaune Altitude 421
A cushioned dark-red fruit cordial nose framed with some creamy oak – it really is a sumptuous invitation. With time in the glass – actually the second glass! – the oak us forgotten. In the mouth you have the same impression as the nose – cushioned, sumptuous fruit with a moderately overt accent of creamy oak. Super texture. What a far too delicious wine – clearly a great Bourgogne – and the bottle empties mysteriously quickly !!
Rebuy – Yes

a couple of wines…

By billn on January 25, 2024 #degustation

An interesting couple – and certainly a delicious couple.

2022 Julien Brocard Chablis Boissonneuse
A staple in the Nanson household since the 2017 vintage when, as our house wine, we knocked off at least 3 7-packs (yes, 7-packs !!) over a single summer. This, now one of the first bottled 22s drunk at home – another 7-pack(!) purchase. This Julien Brocard wine is from his orange wax topped biodynamic range, DIAM sealed.
A forward, ripe fruit nose that’s clean in the width and shows plenty of depth. Full and ripe in the mouth too but this is delicious and has just enough tension to keep things moreish! A larger wine than the ‘zing’ of the 2021 but it will become more classic with age – I’m sure – I’m just not sure that any of these will live long enough to test that 🙂
Rebuy – Probably Yes

1999 Guy Castagnier, Clos de la Roche
From a six-pack bought way back – around 2002. After this bottle, just 2 more remain, plus a 1998 but possibly my 1996s and 1997s are all gone…
Ooh – now that’s a nose – this is not far away from being completely ready – of course with absolutely no rush for those who want to chance their arm for another 20 years! A complex nose, inviting with dried leaf complexity and still some fine purity of darker red fruit. It’s lovely on the palate – again dark-red fruit and lovely texture. The, once, direct flavours have now given way to more width over the palate but the lovely finishing flavours are so persistent – but not sufficiently persistent to slow down the drinking of this bottle 🙂 Five years ago (the last bottle that I opened) I thought there might have been a bit of brett but this wine was clean and it was polished off on the night. Lovely!
Rebuy – Yes

Chablis 2024…

By billn on January 16, 2024 #degustation#reports

No, not the 2024 vintage – it’s ‘just’ my location.

Beautiful hoarfrost this morning and blue skies too – but it was still -6°C at 10h30 !! Yesterday the mist/low cloud only departed the scene at about 3pm – but it’s been clear since then. How hard I had to scrape the Subaru’s windscreen this morning attests to that!

Anyway, as usual in January, I’ve started my tour of Chablis domaines – I’ve a list of about 100 domaines to visit, so let’s see how that goes. I’ve three consecutive weeks with about 20-22 domaines per week, then I’ll have to return in March to add as many more as possible.

I’m also planning blind tastings of 2022s from Irancy and Petit Chablis while I’m here.

And, as every spare moment allows, I’m also adding a few new domaines each day to this 2022 Côte de Nuits reports page.

All my best… !!

A little Friday Chambertin…

By billn on January 13, 2024 #degustation

Friday's Chambertin!I know that I’ve had flu and had to postpone all my Christmas wines – but this wasn’t a Christmas wine, it was a harvest lunch wine – but I caught covid 🙂

I’m starting to sound like a very sickly type – but it was my first covid – that I’m aware of(!) – and my flu was despite my annual flu-jab. I haven’t had flu for at least 20 years, but this year…

Still, my hill repeats whilst jogging were quite quick this afternoon – so things are coming back to normal!

2001 Frederic Esmonin, Chambertin
Bought en-primeur with a number of other wines from this producer.
Hmm – the first aromatic impression is of quite resinous oak – it recalls the Thomas-Moillard RSV of a week ago. Slowly the oak is lost and there are some faintly perfumed florals – but this wine still isn’t going to win many prizes! In the mouth, the wine has good scale but the flavours are a little gentle and loose-knit – very red fruit and the width of deep notes impresses – but the good parts are still below my expectations for the label – oh, and the time I invested cellaring it. The 2001 Bèze, Mazis and Ruchottes from F.Esmonin were all better wines than this Chambertin – but in those days the price for this was a snip – £36 in bond – though, of course, the better wines were even cheaper! Part of the fun is owning a wine since it was released and waiting for the right time to open it. This is not a bad wine – I drank every drop, finishing it on Saturday – and it held up well – but it lacks that extra ‘sparkle’ that I expect from Chambertin.
Rebuy – No

A couple of wines…

By billn on January 11, 2024 #degustation

Wines - week 02 2024

Getting the old taste buds back into action !!

2020 Chablisienne, Chablis 1er Montmains
This was great wine – pre-bottling – I ordered a dozen. After taking delivery, it was obvious from the first bottle I opened that there were pyrazines in here though – shit! This is my first bottle for quite a while – and there are 5 more in the cellar. The nose starts saline and with a fine citrus-backed attack – the small pyrazine notes slowly grow as the wine rises from refrigerator temperature. Super shape in the mouth – structural and with mouth-watering clean energy – but these flavours still have a trace of pyrazine too. A shame, though the insensitive will love this wonderfully classic Chablis!
Rebuy – No

2005 Dubreuil-Fontaine, Volnay
This wine, from the beginning, has only begrudgingly showed it’s worth. The pricing was great and it contains plenty of 1er cru juice – but like some other 2005s – it was closed tight for years. I have the impression that my last bottle (2-3 years ago) was more open than this one! Yet. Day one – stridently intense – this is a hard wine to drink – it’s simply ‘too much!’ On day two, the the nose has relaxed and is inviting the flavours are more accessible too – that’s tasty! Day 3 – the nose is slightly less good but the palate is even better. This is still something of a baby. But I remain highly confident, despite having drunk more than half of the 12-pack by now!
Rebuy – Yes

2014 Henri Gouges, Nuits St.Georges
Ooh – that smells lovely – a very cherry/red berry nose – it doesn’t speak much of Nuits to me but the fruit is really inviting. Direct, fresh – ‘a little classic’ but this is a wine that delivers its flavours with crisp purity and an acid-led juicy finish. I really loved it. Delicious wine.
Rebuy – Yes

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