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6 notes
1996 Belland Jean-Claude, Santenay CommeNov. 2007
Medium-plus ruby-red colour. The nose starts with a fine berry/raspberry note, set against a deeper brooding background – lovely – shame then that after 30 minutes you are left only with the brooding background! The palate itself is fresh and like very many of the lower appellation wines from this vintage, it is defined mainly by it’s acidity. Overall the tannin is hidden but the palate is linear and narrow, concentrated for all that but surprisingly primary. Length is almost good. Overall there is little here to suggest that it’s 11 years since the vintage. I wonder if/when it will ever open out – one more bottle remains – so I’ll give it one more chance, age 15, but I wouldn’t buy more.
1996 Belland Jean-Claude, ChambertinAug. 2007
The colour is a rather deep mahogany with just a hint of ruby-red in the reflections. The nose shouts of toasty oak when first poured but rapidly starts to show a super depth and even height of red shaded fruits then finally some floral violet notes – super complexity and quite impressive. After the 2000 Thomas-Moillard St.Vivant this is excredibly lithe, tight and acid-driven – it takes a few sips to adjust before calm is restored. There’s real intensity here and though the finish is quite understated, it is very long. You sense rather than feel the tannins due to a faint astringency, but they are very well behaved. Slowly the density builds in the mid-palate rounding the wine out more and more – I’d say this conservatively needs another 5 years to make the next step from impressive to excellent. This was really super value costing ‘only’ ~€50, I seem to remember the price jumping significantly for the 1999 vintage, today I’ve lost touch on the pricing.
1999 Belland Jean-Claude, Santenay CommeApr. 2007
Deep colour – actually there’s still just the merest hint of cherry-red at the rim. The reticent nose is rather brooding, alternately showing some lovely pure blackcurrant fruit then a rather more mineral note – not unlike the graphite of a Paulliac, perhaps hints of licorice too. Very well textured – you really have to roll the wine around your mouth to find the tannins as they still have plenty of dark fruit coverage – faint grain can be found eventually. There’s real concentration here and quite a burst on the mid-palate too. The acidity is just right, only on the finish does this wine hint at its origins – medium-plus length at best. This wine delivers much more than I expected, and in a very understated way – it probably requires at least 3-5 years more in the cellar – but this bottle was far from sacrificed.
1997 Belland Jean-Claude, ChambertinNov. 2003
Medium-plus ruby core moving through brown to amber at the rim – this could be 20 years old from the colour. On opening you’re met with a pronounced medium toasty-oak nose which gradually subsides to the background becoming more like plum and coffee. The nose constantly evolved – from the colour I was expecting a cooked fruit profile, but gradually primary red an black cherry is unlocked from the mix – even redcurrants too after a time. The palate has very silky tannins with long acidity. This feels really sumptuous in the mouth and shows perhaps a little more cooked fruit than the nose with a deep plum pie. If there is one area of disappointment it is in the medium plus finish – given the nose and silky palate I’d expected an extra length – but it wasn’t there. Still a lovely wine and this producer’s version is usually cheaper than many a Charmes’.
1999 Belland Jean-Claude, Santenay CommeMar. 2003
Deep colour though already showing some development. Nose is intense and less primary compared to the first tasting a year ago. The palate shows good acidity and tannin, coupled with deep fruit just shaded towards black. This is very ripe. Medium-plus length. Still a bit forthright for real enjoyment now, but good wine.
1999 Belland Jean-Claude, Santenay CommeJan. 2003
Deep colour though already showing some development. Nose is intense and less primary compared to the first tasting a year ago. The palate shows good acidity and tannin, coupled with deep fruit just shaded towards black. This is very ripe. Medium-plus length. Still a bit forthright for real enjoyment now, but good wine.
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