1995 Epenots – Vaudoisey-Creusefond

By billn on August 12, 2020 #degustation

1995 Pommard EpenotsAn obvious homage to the 2017 vintage of this wine, tasted and very much enjoyed this weekend. This 1995 was one of a number of vintages of this cuvée that I bought at auction more than 10 years ago – it was a very grumpy, tannic, far from enjoyable wine back then – and today?

1995 Vaudoisey-Creusefond, Pommard 1er Les Epenots
The cork extracts almost in one piece, just a layer of about 2mm breaking off into the bottle – in this case easily rescued with a little cutlery.
Medium, bricked colour – it’s clearly a wine of colour maturity – practically browning at the rim. Hmm, that’s really quite an attractive nose; spiced, maybe a warm suggestion of cinnamon. In the mouth, this is deeply flavoured and shows a width of leather, musk and spice flavours. The acidity is not completely smooth – but 90% – it’s okay. Complex, tasty, absorbingly interesting wine. The first day still with plenty of cushioned red fruit, the second day shows much less – but still nothing oxidative/balsamic. Very good.
Rebuy – Maybe

zu einfach – a pouilly-fuissé 2018

By billn on August 11, 2020 #degustation

Pouilly Fuissé Baronne ChatelardMy May 2020 look at 2018 Pouilly-Fuissés found a surprisingly balanced and delicious range of wines – even some of the larger négoce cuvées were outstanding – Louis Max’s wine practically being my white wine ‘buy’ of the year. As we can see, it doesn’t always work that way though:

2018 Baronne du Chatelard, Pouilly-Fuissé
Medium depth of young lemon-yellow colour. The nose has just a little herby/zesty interest and decent width of aroma too. Easy over the palate, easy in the flavours, modest bitters in the equally modestly citrussy finish. A wine that’s simply too easy, practically to the point of becoming a little bland. Tasty but, essentially, far too forgettable in the context of so many surprisingly good wines from this hot vintage.
Rebuy No

weekend wines, week 32 2020, & my best 1996…

By billn on August 10, 2020 #degustation

week 32 2020 - weekend wines

All robust corks. The first three wines were from dinner on Friday, the RSV I opened on Saturday – as usual, the PX in the image was very good, but not great:

2012 Dampt Frères, Chablis Les Preuses
A strong but young-looking yellow colour. The first sniff of the first pour and there’s something a little herbed in the flavour but not the aroma which is chalky, nicely defined and very attractively citrus. I would have guessed a well-concentrated classic Chablis even if it hadn’t been my wine! Delicious, layered, a little fat but with the classically cristal-clean, citrus-edged, flavours of my favourite vintage – 2012. We were lucky it was a magnum! In fine vintages, this is a very useful address!
Rebuy – Yes

2017 Vaudoisey-Creusefond, Pommard 1er Les Epenots
Served blind – a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing! Apparently a wine made with relatively young vines – about 13-14 at the time of this.
The nose starts with a lot of creamy oak, but it’s fortunately quite transient/volatile – slowly it’s a floral perfume that comes centre-stage – violets – very attractive. The palate largely mirrors the nose with lots of creamy oak, but also with a clarity of good fruit too – becoming ever-more perfumed. I like the structure here – all is decently concentrated but properly structured too. A young wine, I guess 2016 as it was quite a concentrated wine, the structure and perfume sending me to Chambolle-Musigny – oh well! At least I was close on the vintage 🙂
Rebuy – Yes

1996 Grivot Richebourg1996 Jean Grivot, Richebourg
In my cellar for exactly 20 years and cost the princely sum of 80 Swiss francs – the 1999 cost nearly 250! And wow – this was singing! Something of a baby for sure, but it was open and delicious, properly ‘grand’ wine. Not a drop was left in the bottle. I last tasted in 99 when it was all tannin and acid intensity, today it is wonderfully balanced. By far my ‘greatest’ 1996. There was a certain clarity of flavour to this wine that I’ve not experienced with other Grivot cuvées of the ‘era’ – it really makes me wonder if the winemaking was the same as for the other wines – I remember the 1995 also having great clarity of fruit which is so rarely my impression with the wines from this estate in the 1990s.
A nose of depth and complexity – the first pour showing a suggestion of balsamic – it must have been associated with the cork/headspace of the wine (it had been standing for a week) as all the subsequent pours were perfect. Deep, deep, flavoured, complex, powerful, far from a mature wine but absolutely ready. The finish shimmered with flavour long after swallowing. The balance is wonderful here, the forward acidity of its youth wrapped with quite enough depth of flavour. Bravo – clearly a great wine – drink now or wait another 20 years, I hardly think it matters!
Rebuy – Yes A case at the old price!

2002 Charles Thomas, Romanée Saint Vivant
A wide nose, complex and more classically ‘Vosne’ than the Grivot – day 2 (despite a night in the fridge) brought some balsamic-style oxidation. Wide and rather silky for this estate – though keep the wine in your mouth long enough and the tannin does start to make its presence felt. A good finish here. This is very good wine and would be a rebuy at the old price – I suspect that it’s somewhat more expensive chez Dujac today though 🙂 As noted above the wine is more diffuse and shows a modestly oxidative element in the mix on day 2 – so you know what to do – drink it all on the first night, as it’s very tasty.
Rebuy – Yes


By billn on August 03, 2020 #degustation

Yes there have been some!

I simply let the photos pile-up whilst going walking in the Swiss hills 🙂 My short reminisences:

1998 Gelin, Fixin 1er Clos Napoleon
Here was a wine with few friends when younger. The fact that I bought a case cheaply in 2001 and still have 7 or 8 bottles speaks volumes – yet today, this is engaging and no-longer ‘hard’ experience. Actually, I enjoyed it more than a little. Yum – time can be a great healer!
Rebuy – Maybe

2007 Alex Gambal, St.Aubin 1er Murgers du Dents du Chien
Deeply coloured but not even a suggestion of oxidation to either aromas or flavours. Deep, complex, mineral and with a surprising ‘fatness’ to the texture for a 2007. Not as engagingly complete as the 2006 currently shows, but this was a complex and brilliant finishing wine that is only just starting to unlock some of that age-related complexity. Really excellent!
Rebuy – Yes

2005 G&P Ravaut, Ladoix Les Carrières
Here’s a wine packs both an aromatic and flavour punch. There’s something very 2005 about this density of aroma and flavour – but it’s a wine that’s also completely open and rather involving. Really a great villages – chapeau!
Rebuy – Yes

2010 Clotilde Davenne, Saint-Bris Vieilles-Vignes
Screw-capped. A deep lemon-yellow colour. The nose has a touch of mint and a really fresh invitation to drink. Deep, beautiful, almost a pineapple carpaccio flavour profile. Non-standard versus a chardonnay but completely delicious. Super wine again!
Rebuy – Yes

2009 Camille Giroud, Corton
A forward and open nose, yet a little too meaty and sweet for this palate – no delicacy here. The nose would not have been a problem if the palate had delivered something different – but again, it’s something of an uncouthly sweet experience in the mouth. Clearly a phase as this wine was very tasty a few years ago. I don’t have many more, but will anyway probably wait 5 years or so before trying again.
In this instance Rebuy – No

2011 Alex Gambal, St.Aubin 1er Murgers du Dents du Chien
Like the 2007 quite some depth to the colour – and again nothing oxidative. Where this differs from the older wine, is a more exotic fruit profile and still some barrel-creaminess – there’s even the faintest suggestion of barrel reduction. Very drinkable but still some way from my idea of maturing white burgundy. Another 5 years should do it!
Rebuy – Yes

nuits for the weekend

By billn on July 21, 2020 #degustation

Nuits St.Georges

And for a change, three great, robust, corks too!

2007 Mugnier, Nuits St.Georges 1er Clos de la Marechale
There’s a little ageing to the colour of this, but not to the extent of many from the vintage. The nose has bit of ‘pluminess’ to the fruit, but it’s generally got a nice line of purity, plus a perfume that recalls the stems. The palate is full, clean and in a very good place to start your drinking. There’s just a little of the Premeaux tannin* in evidence – but only a little. Round but with energy, this is drinking very well.
Rebuy – Yes at the old price!

1995 Grivot, Nuits St.Georges 1er Les Roncières
Unsurprisingly the colour is showing plenty of age – this bottle with plenty of sediment too – but granular rather than fogging up that last glasses with something very fine-grained. The nose starts a little blunt versus the extra clarity of the Mugnier, but with air, this is a wine with so much more width, complexity, and shows flashes of purity too – that’s really excellent! Broader yet still more direct and with great freshness. Also more energy than the Mugnier. Today I like the Marechale very much, but I love this – it’s the best it’s ever shown since I bought the bottles ~2000! There’s still a little southern Nuits tannin to be found but at this age, I’d say practically anecdotal. Excellent – I really enjoyed it!
Rebuy – Yes at the old price

2007 JC Boisset, Nuits St.Geaorges Aux Lavières
A northern Nuits – and it shows! The colour, if anything a little younger looking than the Marechale. The fruit on the nose is very much in the vernacular of that wine without any plummy characteristics. Less full than either of the 1ers, but showing admirable purity for the vintage, and a more elegant structure as befits its place closer to Vosne-Romanée. Young, delicious and a wine that was an absolute bargain back in those (still!) heady days of 2009!
Rebuy – Yes even for a good price!

*All the wines of Premeaux-Prissy – so Marechale, Arlot, Argillières, Clos St.Marc, Clos des Corvées, Clos des Forêts – kick me if I missed one – have a grainier style to their tannin, than Les St.Georges and onwards north to NSG and beyond… – oops, also Perdrix, Terres Blanches and Didiers, though less so Grands Vignes on the ‘wrong’ side of the RN74 – at least how Louis-Michel Liger-Belair makes it!

les wines de la ouikend…

By billn on July 14, 2020 #degustation

ouikend wines

Starting with an old friend with the William Fevre 2017 Chablis – highly dependable and delicious. The David Croix’s 2011 Santenay Clos Rousseau from Camille Giroud; such a highly drinkable and indeed relatively powerful wine for 2011 – very impressive depth and finishing interest here. The Rebourseau 2018 Gevrey La Brunelle will be in my upcoming report, but as a counterpoint, I also opened the 2006 Roty Gevrey cuvée Brunelle – this was a wine where the oak stuck out and gave the wine a very ‘cola’ impression when young – I didn’t like it then – but now it has beautifully mellowed – in some respects reminding me of an easy, sweet but tasty wine from 2000 – lovely, though the last glass on day two had a clear oxidative note despite having been refridgerated. And to finish, an aligoté from the north – the 2018 Selection Massale from Gueguen: faintly floral, beautifully poised and absolutely delicious with our Thai yellow-curry and rice – a great and delicious combination.

some weekend wines – week 26 2020

By billn on June 29, 2020 #degustation

weekend wines week 26-2020

Ignoring the corked Vosne that came before the crumbly-corked Savigny, a super selection of wines here – lots of personality and deliciousness too!

2018 Marcel Couturier, Pouilly-Fuissé Les Scellés
Cork-sealed – no branding on the cork.
A lovely and energetic nose that mixes some floral perfume and a suggestion of minerality – that’s a lovely invitation to take a sip. The merest suggestion of gas on the palate and an energy that matches that of the nose. Sweetly mineral – and delicious too – bursting with extra finishing flavour. A delicious treat
Rebuy – Yes

Boisset 2005 Jarrons cork2005 JC Boisset, Savigny-lès-Beaune 1er Hautes Jarrons
What an awful cork – simply crumbling through the middle. Thankfully without adding insult to injury – it hadn’t tainted the wine.
Plenty of colour. Here’s a nose of depth, of complexity – even a little blood to bind with the forest floor of dried leaves – this has a suggestion of hardness too, but there’s no lacking of attractive complexity. The entry is a little modest for a 2005 but here is a wine that expands wider and wider over the palate, taking its time to show that the intrinsic concentration is good. Balanced, complex and entertaining, but for my taste still a little young today – certainly drink their 06 Monts Luisants (below) in preference to this today – and I hope you get a better cork than mine.
Rebuy – Yes

2018 Clavelier, Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Nuits Les Acacias
A DIAM-sealed wine.
A floral nose – auto-suggestion acacia! There’s a little oak too – contributing not just to the aromas but perhaps to the silky texture too. Not just silky, there is a fine level of both minerality and energy here – I like the line of this wine, but would wait for the oak to fade – or perhaps decant half an hour before drinking. This is super 2018 – highly recommended so-long that you are not too oak-averse.
Rebuy – Yes

2018 Sébastien Dampt, Chablis 1er Les Beugnons
Another wine that’s sealed with DIAM – a little black wax to top the bottle too.
A deep nose, quite mineral too – almost in a reductive register. Like the nose, there’s lots of depth to this mineral flavoured wine, a wine that slowly expands to fill all the space that it can find. Super, and a rare 2018 Chablis that will obviously benefit from extra cellar time.
Rebuy – Yes

2006 JC Boisset, Morey St.Denis 1er Monts Luisants
This time the cork stayed intact
Not much more than medium colour, but what a beautiful, floral, perfumed nose – reminding of whole-cluster perfume – it’s a beauty! The perfume on the nose is a strong part of the flavour profile too. Fine balance, lovely acidity – a certain sweetness of fruit too – and whilst this wine really doesn’t lack concentration, it has a wonderfully ethereal quality. Just a brilliant wine – bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

When in doubt, Beaujolais…

By billn on June 25, 2020 #degustation

Bachelards Fleurie

It was a saying that I picked up on yesterday, and thought ‘why not?!

2014 Château des Bachelards, Fleurie
DIAM5 sealed.
Still a young colour – with hints of purple. The nose – now that’s super – very fine cherry-style fruit but there’s more, a graphite-style of minerality too that sometimes hints of cigar tobacco – very pure and not the faintest suggestion of the development that I’m seeing in many 15s, 16s and even some 2017s already! Not a wine of big impact but certainly one with width to the flavour and a growing intensity to that flavour too. Oh – did I mention that it’s a delicious flavour? And growing a little of that graphite complexity in the floral-accented finish too. A pure but complex baby wine – you can keep it for years – even the nose seems to become more perfumed in the glass. Great Fleurie – yes it does exist!
Rebuy – Yes

20 years of wine in the last days…

By billn on June 23, 2020 #degustation

Two wines, 20 years apart…

2018 Savigny-lès-Beaune Clos des Godeaux
A wine with a tight-ish, quite modest, yet inviting nose. This moves well over the palate with both citrus and mineral – then the impression of a little oak flavour in the finish – I’d probably wait another 6-12 months so that it fades more into the background. It has a super finish though. Excellent.
Rebuy – Yes

1998 Hudelot-Noellat, Vosne-Romanée 1er Les Suchots
The cork comes out in one piece – wine-saturated through about 40% of its length.
Oh-yes! Now that’s a very attractive nose indeed – wide, complex, very Vosne and such a great invitation. Clean, wide, deliciously flavoured – not even a suggestion of the terrible young tannins of the vintage. Graceful wine, without lacking depth or energy and clearly beautifully made – a quarter of the bottle was left in the fridge, only to be rescued 4 days later – and not a hint of brett, oxidation or other unwelcome guests – less precise for sure but still completely drinkable. Bravo!
Rebuy – Yes

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