Degustation

week 50 2019 – the visits…

By billn on December 13, 2019 #degustation#reports

Yes, I know – week 50!

I’m now in Switzerland, but should have been in France ready to use my TGV tickets on Sunday – but there are no TGVs. The same time last year it was the gilets jaunes. Oh well…

Anyway, the last visits of this year are now completed, so it’s just down to the typing of those 113 individual reports: The 2018 Whites issue (October Report) will be online in the next few days – the 2018 Reds issue (November Report) will be online before my Christmas lunch – gotta have a target!

My thanks to the winemakers who made time available this week:

weekend 49 2019 – the wines

By billn on December 10, 2019 #degustation

weekend wines

Three ‘bravo’ wines in one weekend – none of which were the expensive ones – we were blessed! 😉

2017 Albert Grivault, Meursault 1er Clos des Perrières
A creamy nose – very nice, background citrus but not ‘special’ today. In the mouth this has beautiful shape, line and length – but – the oak is all-pervading and very creamy. This is a wine for saving – drunk at least a couple of years too early. Very long but it’s currently about potential. A shame to have opened today.
Rebuy – Maybe

2018 Céline Chevallier, Chablis
Perfect – no oak! This wine has a beautiful top note of aroma – despite the 2018 vintage, it’s absolutely classic. In the mouth too it’s much more mouth-watering and moreish compared to the Grivault. Absolutely delicious – bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

2009 Château de Bellevue, Morgon Le CLos Reserve du Caveau
Deeply coloured. A nose that starts sleek, dark-.fruited and has a graphite/mineral impression. In the mouth this starts equally sleek and has driving direction – Morgon is like the Corton of Beaujolais – but with time and aeration this begins to fill all the corners of your mouth – powerful but at the same time cushioned – no fat. This is great but still an absolute baby. Bravo again!
Rebuy – Yes

2001 Nicolas Potel, Romanée St.Vivant
A cork that breaks into two. Not a big nose but one that’s very rewarding in its understated, complex, moderately spiced, slightly mature way. In the mouth, there’s a lovely shape and super texture – mouth-filling and at the same time, a little soft. The flavours have quite some maturity about them. This is delicious wine but vs the cost of entry today, of dubious value – this cost ‘only’ €80 way back when. Oh, and don’t leave any for day two either – I left some overnight in the fridge, next day it was bretty – something I didn’t note on opening. A wine that I enjoyed very much, but wouldn’t dream of re-purchasing at current pricing.
Rebuy – No

2005 Claude et Catherine Maréchale, Pommard La Chanière
Deep colour – oh and what a great nose too – profound, some modest notes of maturity – it’s highly inviting. Big in the mouth, like the nose, profound. I love the padded muscularity, the delicious complexity, and the great texture. This is great, great villages and it’s ready to go now! Bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

2018 – it’s not your father’s burgundy…

By billn on December 02, 2019 #degustation#reports

Dominique Gallois
My white report will be out in not much more than a week, covering over 40 domaines’ wines and the white vintage assessed in detail.

But here’s a weekend red – my first bottled 2018 red burgundy at home – and it’s more than a good one for the vintage – though I’ve only visited 44 (mainly) red domaines so far. Dominique Gallois has made super, punchy, balanced wines with fine energy in 2018 – they are well above the average – but here you can see, firsthand, the (my) stylistic conundrum of the vintage:

2018 Dominique Gallois, Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Very deep colour. Directly from the fridge (as all my wines), I can’t really describe this as pinot from Burgundy, it smells more like a good gamay cru – but at least there’s no bubble-gum here. Likewise in the mouth, this starts in direct, concentrated, even assertive style. It’s fresh, you might even convince me that it’s pinot – but, initially, not from Burgundy. As the wine warms in the glass the texture becomes more overtly velvet, the structure and flavours relax over the palate – even the nose smells a little more like pinot. It’s absolutely delicious wine of sufficient freshness, purity of (dark) fruit, no hard edges and a concentration that you don’t often find in a villages wine. It is a great regional wine – if you like the style – I can happily drink it despite its overt sweetness, but stylistically, 10,11,12,13,14 are all much more attractive to me. And blind, I still wouldn’t guess that it was from Burgundy…
Rebuy – Maybe

a couple of weekend wines, week 47 2019

By billn on November 26, 2019 #degustation

Hmm – week 47 – there’s not many weeks left this year!

Two similarly priced wines – similarly good too:

2016 Jean-Marc Pillot, Montagny 1er Les Gouresses
Such a vibrant and perfumed nose of sweet citrus and faint minerality. A punch of freshness, complexity and energy. Yes!
Rebuy – Yes

2016 Bourgogne-Devaux, Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Beaune La Dalignère
Plenty of red colour here. Plenty of red fruit aroma too. Silky wine, but one with plenty of volume. There’s some minerality in this deeply fruited wine, but it’s balanced excellent wine.
Rebuy – Yes

nouveau – non

By billn on November 22, 2019 #degustation

It’s a truism in Burgundy that there are great wines, but often you can’t buy them. I seem to have found that also with Beaujolais Nouveau this year. This bottle was the only option in my (Swiss) supermarket this year – for a princely 5.95 Swiss francs. To be honest, most of the wines I tasted here were superior to this particular bottle – but, again, this was my only choice.

It’s unclear who actually made it – the back label is generic and notes only that the wine was imported from Beaujolais by my supermarket. I disliked it not because it was thin and weedy – rather for completely opposite reasons – it was fat, well-textured, obviously concentrated, but it was also cloyingly sweet – no gamay freshness – so no second glass. The rest should be okay for boeuf bourguignone. We drank some 2016 Jean-Marc Pillot 1er Montagny for our second (and) third glasses – that restored us!

and the winners are…

By billn on November 21, 2019 #annual laurels#degustation

I previously mentioned the first-round tasting for Burgundy’s young winemaking talents 2019, well for the weekend of the Vend du Vin, the final blind taste-off was done and the winners chosen.

And the results?

On Friday 15 November evening, at the Palais des Congrès in Beaune, the GJPV organization awarded their seven regional trophies to the following young winemakers:

  • Damien MARTIN – Domaine de LA DENANTE – Mâconnais
  • Arnaud et Xavier DESFONTAINE – Château de CHAMILLY – Côte Chalonnaise
  • Laurent GAY – Domaine Michel GAY & Fils – Côte de Beaune
  • Prune AMIOT – Domaine AMIOT-SERVELLE – Côte de Nuits
  • Charly NICOLLE – Domaine CHARLY NICOLLE – Chablis
  • Bastien MATHIAS – Domaine Alain MATHIAS – Grand Auxerrois
  • Cyril CHIROUZE – Château des JACQUES – Beaujolais

the tastevinage majors of 2019…

By billn on November 19, 2019 #annual laurels#degustation

For the second vintage, the tasting panels of the Tastevinage have chosen their ‘majors’ for the year – their best wines tasted. This year they have reduced their list from the 20 that were chosen last year, to just 12 for this. There are some unexpected names in the list too!

For this ‘award,’ the twelve were chosen from the 1,215 wines that were submitted to blind taste in 2019:

2019 Tastevinage Majors

week 45 visits #2018BurgundyReport

By billn on November 09, 2019 #degustation#travels in burgundy 2019

Back home for a very short weekend before taking the road back to Beaune tomorrow evening.

My last visits for the ‘2018 whites’ report are now made, and I’ve already started the transition to building up the list of red domaines. As a teaser for the forthcoming reports, you can see the mugshots of this week’s unfortunate victims!

a bottle or two…

By billn on November 08, 2019 #degustation

Just to show that I haven’t been ignoring my responsibilities these last couple of weeks – here’s the majority of bottles pulled from my own cellar in that time. I hold almost no notes in my head, but the basic impressions remain:

The Armand Volnay was 2017, actually a sinuous and delicious drink already.
Vocoret 2015 Chablis VV – more muscular again but über-mineral and it sang of Chablis.
Long̬re 2017 Beaujolais Blanc РNos 2 Elles Рrich and ripe yet each glass seemed better and better Рa rare delicious BJB!
2007 Lafon, Monthelie 1er Les Duresses. This has really opened since I last looked – blossomed, even. Complex, very Volnay aromatically, just a little structure on the palate but no sharp edges, no rigour – drinking very well!
2015 Nicolas Rouget, Chorey-lès-Beaune – This had a lovely freshness, it drank superbly well for the appellation. Nicolas the (one of the) son(s) of Emmanuel of Flagey. If I understand correctly, this may have been a bit of an experiment, hence, not bottled under Emmanuel’s name, but now I think Emmanuel uses his own label.
2017 David Duband, C̫te de Nuits Villages. Fabulous Рsimply great CVDN Villages. Plenty of colour, life, richness and freshness combined Рbravo wine!
Chateau Rougeon Aligoté Arénites 2018. Easy fresh, tasty wine.
2015 Fran̤oise Andr̩, Chorey-l̬s-Beaune Tue-Boeuf Рanother 2015 Chorey, more the standard fuller profile of the wines from here but completely delicious right now!
2012 Camille Giroud, Volnay 1er Lurets – wow – such clarity, such elegant aroma – great wine!
2007 David Clark, Morey Les Porroux – what a young wine! Concentrated, still tannic, a baby, but a good one with plenty of material. Still young!
2002 Ch̩zeaux, Griotte-Chambertin Рwell, I was shocked that this was so fabulous Рwhy Рit was the Leclerc version and my experience of their older bottles is moderate at best, but this was fabulous Рold oak, mushroom but clean and great!
2007 Alex Gambal, Chambolle 1er Charmes. Another hit, round, ripe, but complex and engaging – another hit for sure!
2016 V̩zelay Рthe St.Vincent cuv̩e produced by Croix Montjoie Рmy last bottle, the one before was corked. Bright, energetic, citrus, engaging. Simply delicious.
2008 Chézeaux/Ponsot, Chambertin. All my older Chambertins have had a problem of one sort or another – all down to the corks – but this has the plastic ‘cork’ – it was fresh, really fabulously complex on the nose and in the mouth – elegant rather than powerful – but what a beauty to drink. It captured our hearts!

Burgundy Report

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