Adieu Chablis – for now

By billn on February 06, 2024 #picture gallery#travels in burgundy 2024

Friday was my last day in Chablis – for my first tranche of visits!

I managed a little more than 60 domaines in my January tour but actually have a list of over 100 domaines that I could potentially visit. That means I will have to visit again in March, April and possibly May too!

There are worse things 🙂

The weather wasn’t bad and the Scooby (2) surged through the 600,000 km mark – just one day with a little rain but the last two weeks were incredibly mild for January – 10-14°C and no frosty mornings. At this stage, I think the vigneron(ne)s should be happy that they have some stock after two decent volume vintages!

Just a few pics from underway…

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

T-shirts already !

By billn on January 26, 2024 #travels in burgundy 2024#vintage 2024

Chablis views this week…

The weather has been very topsy-turvy in Chablis for the last 10 days – you could go as far as to say bizarre!

Last week I arrived to a hoarfrost – all the trees were white – but there was no snow. Tuesday morning when I did a short jog, it was -8°C. Tuesday evening when I did a long jog – it was warmer but still minus and there were snowflakes in the air. Wednesday lunchtime it was 15°C but Thursday morning we were back to -4°C !!

This week we seem to have settled around 13-14°C daytime temperatures and a lot of the buildings haven’t yet recovered from last week’s cold – so it’s often warmer outside. Yesterday was rainy – so nothing to see – today for an hour we had sunshine – and what did I see in l’Homme Mort? People pruning in t-shirts…

We have become accustomed to seeing that in recent years for a few days in February – but it’s not yet even February – pff!

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

Reports Update

By billn on January 24, 2024 #reports

Chablis - Friday 19th January 2024
Chablis – Friday 19th January 2024

As I previously wrote – due to the number of requests, over the last 7 days I added the last 30 domaines in piecemeal fashion to my 2022 Côte de Nuits report – and on Monday (yesterday) the report’s 50 domaines were all finished – so please enjoy!

So, that’s 146 domaines since the harvest plus another 24 domaines whose 2022 wines I tasted in the weeks before the harvest. You won’t be shocked to hear that I’m already 30 domaines into my tour of 2022 Chablis !! At least I can start typing those now 🙂

My best to all…

Concours des Vins de Chablis – 2022 vintage…

By billn on January 23, 2024 #annual laurels

It’s that time of year again – it’s mid-January and I’m in Chablis – that means that it’s also time for the Concours des Vins de Chablis.

Held over the weekend – this was the 38th edition. This year it was the 2022s under the magnifying glass – except that they looked one year further back (at the 2021s) for the grand crus.

Following on from Guillaume Barion, two years ago, and Jasper Morris last year year who both took on the role of head of the jury, this year the honour fell to French sommelier, Jean-Luc Jamrozik, president of the Paris Sommeliers Association.

Jean-Luc was responsible for 63 jury members, whose task was to taste 335 wines (up from 259 wines in the small volume 2021 vintage) and decide who should get a medal – easy! Actually, it was seemingly not so easy because from this larger number of samples a very modest 27 received medals.

Above right (click) you can find the BIVB‘s summary of the medalists released this morning – in French!

The best gamay in the world !(?)

By billn on January 17, 2024 #annual laurels#beaujolais

The 14th edition of the International Gamay Competition took place at the Cité Internationale de Lyon last Saturday – the 13th of January.

David Béroujon 2021Over 800 wines from 4 countries; France, Switzerland, Italy & Brazil were tasted by a jury of 181 ‘professional wine tasters and informed amateurs‘ who awarded 267 medals including 164 Gold and 103 Silver. So 20% of the wines received a gold medal – which sounds a little high.

That said, my experience of winners has been positive (though I visited only one winner!) – and his Beaujolais wines have always been delicious – David Béroujon – pictured, right, with his trophy.

From the 164 gold medals there was an additional ‘taste-off’ which was won by an old vines Moulin à Vent by Domaine du Colonat who are based in Villié-Morgon. An address to add to my list 🙂

The runner up wine came from Switzerland: AOC Coteau de Peissy, Domaine des Charmes, Le Baron Rouge Vieilles Vignes 1er cru 2022. Now that really is a mouthful !!

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

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