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smash and grabs in chablis…

DSC05988Image: Julien Brocard, 29th January 2015.

The domaine of Jean-Marc Brocard was, last weekend, targeted by thieves, and not for the first time in recent days. In a ram-raid smash and grab (the domaine and its shop is remote from its home village of Préhy, about 7-8 minutes drive from Chablis town) about 600 bottles were stolen, and of-course only the best cuvées were stolen from their retail shop. The damage caused by the ram-raid is nearly comparable to the cost of the wine – so feel free to raise an eyebrow if you see some cheap JM Brocard in the next days; apparently the bottles are all numbered…

The weekend’s second smash and grab was much more corporate in nature: Late on Friday, Maison Albert Bichot put out a press-release before switching off the lights for the weekend. The have acquired the 33 hectare domaine of Pascal Bouchard in Chablis, or maybe it’s the maison part(?) – the press release is a little opaque in that matter. On Thursday I’ll get the infos from the horse’s mouth – but clearly that makes an interesting second brand from Bichot in Chablis and a nice big new cuverie on the otskirts of the town too…

More info when I have it!

It’s complicated, but Bichot have bought the winery where they will vinify all their purchased grapes – an equivalent volume to that produced by their Domaine Long-Depaquit – but it will only be half full to start with. The 40 hectares owned by the Bouchard family (2 domaines of 33 and 7 hectares) remain with the family but will still be vinified by Bichot for the first couple of years. As the Bouchard brothers establish new production facilities, the vines will revert back to them over a handful of years…

a great weekend selection…

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A lucky selection – and that was just the house wines for the weekend!

2010 Buisson-Charles, Bourgogne Pinot Noir
Medium, medium-pale colour. Pretty, if modest red fruit aromas. Here is a slightly sweet and completely delicious wine – very modest weight and intensity, but it does what it does, excellently!
Rebuy – Yes

2008, Joseph Roty, Gevrey-Chambertin La Brunelle
Medium-plus colour. A dark-fruited, faintly spiced but rather exciting nose. Lovely acidity – not a bit sharp, but fine, precise and intense. Really lovely flavour and no over barrel influence. Another simply delicious wine!
Rebuy – Yes

1993 Jayer-Gilles, Nuits St.Georegs Les Hautes Poirets
Medium-plus colour. The cork doesn’t smell nice, but the wine smells dreamy! A little dark, decayed oak stays around for only about 5 minutes, followed by deep roasted red fruit – but it changes further – the fruit aromas become ever-more precise and detailed – beautiful stuff! In the mouth there’s width, weight and pretty fruit and sweet, old, old oak underneath. Lovely freshness, complexity and vitality too. A wine to savour – really super-yum!
Rebuy – Yes

summertime…

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 Vosne-Romanée this week…

36 degrees yesterday, and and practically the whole week with 30°C-plus.

Sticky but glorious! Next week starts similarly but cools and becomes a little stormy – so they say anyway!

It’s frankly perfect for the flowering as there’s not much wind and the temperature is really driving the process – at this rate it may all be finished next week – at least in the Côte d’Or. Farmers the world-over, however, always have a little something to complain about, and Burgundy is no different; The heat rather compacts the flowering into a few fewer days and a shorter flowering will typically mean a shorter harvest – because more grapes will be ready at the same time.

Some you win, and some… 😉

One person not complaining? well that’s me. Unexpected helicopter flights plus invitations to dinners which included Leflaive, Lafon, Dujac and de Vogüé made for a great week. I would tell you that it’s something that only happens once per year, but I’d be lying – I’ve been regularly visiting the Côte d’Or since 2000, and less regularly since 1997 – and it’s only happened once in the last 15 years 😉

a morey dog and her view…

The view from Domaine des Beaumonts yetserday late-afternoon, looking towards the hill of Morey St.Denis:

yesterday – a special treat…

Of-course, starting in Vosne-Romanée…

monday – it must be a chablis day…

Gathered together in Zürich for a nice group tasting – blind of Chablis. I’ll write the notes soon, but there was more than an occasional whiff of oxidation – unfortunately…

grèves vs le chapitre – and the winner is….

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1998 Louis Jadot, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
A ‘maison’ wine – as there’s no hint of ‘domaine’ on the labels. And this time not corked! The nose is a little herby but there’s a deep, dark-red fruit on the nose too – good focus, though it’s just a little raucous/rustic. In the mouth it’s similar to the nose – plenty of energy and a core of dark-red, sweet at the core fruit. The structure is present but painless – yet like the nose there’s a rusticity about it despite good depth and complexity. Satisfying enough but not a wine to search out.
Rebuy – Maybe

2009 Sylvain Pataille, Bourgogne Le Chapitre
Medium, medium-plus colour. The nose starts a bit spritzy and almost with a cola note – it needs to lose CO2. Waiting, plus a bit of swirling, reveals a similarly shaded fruit colour to the Jadot Grèves, but with an extra clarity and smoothness. There’s much of this wine that reminds of the Jadot, if with only 90% the concentration, but this really delivers more elegance and fineness of texture. This is fresh and finely balanced – not from an obviously sunny year. This is very, very good – and importantly, quite delicious.
Rebuy – Yes

ultra-orange wine…

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No, not a lecture on ‘off-wine’ – well not in an ‘orange direction’ anyway.

I expected maybe one glass from the Puligny, but fortunately it was on fire, because the 98 Beaune Grèves that I had planned to follow was corked. I open all 1990s wines with a certain (cork) trepidation as it was a terrible time for taint – easily 10%, but I reckon higher. I’ll try another of these Jadots in the next days…

Returning to the Puligny. From an auction ‘lot’ I bought a year or two ago, this is the second I’ve opened. All these have a dark colours and the first had quite a high level of oxidation on the both the cork and the wine. This one’s cork smelled fine, despite the wine almost tending to brown…

1982 Etienne Sauzet, Puligny-Montrachet
Dark orange wine – almost tending to brown, but – hmm… Bingo! A certain freshness, white chocolate, wet wool, lanolin… In the mouth a plush silkiness with gorgeous sucrosity of fruit leaching, together with the acidity, through the gaps in your teeth and over the tongue. The finish is super-wide and slowly mouth-watering and with a faint nougat in the length. Great wine!
Rebuy – No Chance

I’ve 3 more of these, and if none are as good as this – so be it – but this was brilliant. Not bad for a villages! The only other villages I’ve had at the same level were the 64 and 59 Meursaults from Nicolas Potel’s Collection Bellenum – this one sits somewhere in-between.

monday 2010s – one corked one not…

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Two 2010s but unfortunately the first – the Talmettes – was heavily corked…

2010 Hervé Murat, Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Nuits Le Clos Duc
Medium, medium-plus fruit. A dark and herby nose – but with brilliant flashes of fine, dark-red fruit – the herb isn’t so great, but the fruit is. This is supple and shows good concentration and excellent balance. Nice dark-fruit flavour with a mouth-watering sweetness that runs through the structure – but no dryness. Good finish too. Tasty wine…
Rebuy – Yes

time to start your 100 day countdown!

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Pic by Olivier Lamy.

Floraison in Burgundy (flowering in Burgundy) – reported and pictured by Olivier Lamy today. He saw the first flowers today in Criots, Chaumées and Gravières vineyards.

Those are all chardonnay – the pinot is usually later to flower…

a sunday nuits walkabout…

A hike up to Château Gris and higher…

a saturday (mainly) puligny walkabout…

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