the weekend’s duo… (week 21 2023)

By billn on May 29, 2023 #degustation

week 21 2023 - some wines...It’s been a while since I introduced some real bottles to you – there have been many others of-course (below) – and, unfortunately, it will be short while before there will be more!

I now face two weeks of antibiotics due to tick-borne borreliosis – or Lyme disease. Fortunately, I don’t feel like I have any disease!

Amusingly, given that I spend so much time in the woods and hills on trails (jogging!) here was, it seems, a cat-borne tick to which I was introduced whilst sitting in the garden!

2016 Chablisienne / Château Grenouilles, Chablis-Grenouilles
A nose of waxy citrus – edged towards lemon – with an obvious mineral component too. In the mouth, we have a large-scale wine – generous to the point of rich – but silkily textured and sustaining a very long finish. I’d prefer less richness but it’s a very tasty wine all the same – as we could see by the lack of longevity for this (overly heavy!) bottle.
Rebuy – Maybe

2002 Nicolas Potel, Chambertin
Ah – remember the days? I tasted here pre-bottling and immediately placed an order: 6 Chambertin, 6 Malconsorts, 6 Petits Ponts, 6 Gaudichots and 12 Aloxe Boutières. Quite expensive I thought – at ~€1,500 – of course, that’s probably the price of just 3 Chambertin today! This, I think, the last of those 6. There may be a Gaudichots and a Malconsorts who survive – but probably not more…
Hmm – a nose to sink into – this Chambertin is ready! A round impression on the palate – depth and richness – quite a match with the Grenouilles! Tons of sweetness to this fruit and still framed with a tiny tannin – though most of the latter has clearly been transformed to sediment – or earth – as it’s quite granular. Such a delicious, wonderful smelling thing. A glass escaped outright (day 1) consumption to make it into day 2, where the aromas were less involving and more beefy – but the flavour retained its vigour and length. A super wine.
Rebuy – Yes

Some bottles of the last weeks where words escaped me 🙂

Cité des Climats & Vin Bourgogne – Chablis

By billn on May 24, 2023 #degustation#picture gallery#travel pics#travels in burgundy 2023

In the presence of three presidents (no-less!) two from Bureau Interprofessionnel des Vins de Bourgogne – the BIVB’s François Labet and Laurent Delaunay – plus the president of the Association Cité des Climats et Vins de Bourgogne, Benoît de Charette – last week, I had a tour of the soon to open facility in Chablis – one of three such places opening to the public in the next month.

Whilst I’ll reserve judgement on the soon-to-open equivalent building in Mâcon – I’ve yet to see it with my own eyes – this place in the heart of old Chablis seems to be on a very personal scale, fitting well in its surroundings. I’m not the biggest fan of the architecture and scale of what has been built in Beaune but I will reserve my full judgement on that until I’ve seen what’s on the inside – like a bottle of wine – the truth will be on the inside!

This venue in Chablis is (by comparison) compact but full of an almost open-ended opportunity to tour the history – geological and social – of this centre of winemaking – burgundy winemaking. With a small wearable you can choose your language and subject matter as you head down the rabbit-holes of information from the next earpiece – though if your a covid (or germ) -phobic, you may want to take some sanitiser for the earphones that may have cupped a hundred other ears! Released yesterday, there will be ‘programme of cultural events‘ (in all locations) too – so enjoy!

The work on the building’s façade was not quite complete when I visited Chablis but it will be finished before the mid-June official opening!

A few images:

Update on Gevrey’s prime Vin de France…

By billn on May 18, 2023 #travels in burgundy 2023

Hmm - what are those new vines?

It’s a few months ago that the work establishing some new vines became evident – it’s not a big plot, not 500 vines – but the placement is very interesting!

What was once nothing more than parking has now been planted to vine – but it was previously grand cru parking!

From all the vineyard maps that I’ve checked, the plot seems to be within the AOC for Mazoyères-Chambertin and sits just across the road from Latricières-Chambertin. When I last checked and despite a nice new wall, the identity of the proprietor was not obvious but in the last couple of weeks a stone sign has been placed and proclaims the ownership of Domaine JM Guillon.

The problem for this domaine seems to be achieving the necessary authorisation to make burgundy wine – we (they) can forget grand cru for a while – the locals tell me that it’s currently classed as Vin de France – but there won’t be any grapes to harvest until 2026 – so there’s time for it to, maybe, become a Bourgogne – maybe even Bourgogne Côte d’Or!

I assume it’s not just the issue that the land – even if part of the AOC – was never planted, it’s possibly the issue that the land was used, not just, as parking but also as a bit of a(n agricultural) tip…

Errazuriz Wine Photographer of the Year 2023

By billn on May 17, 2023 #annual laurels

Nothing here from our usual friend, Jon Wyand, but congratulations to Thierry Gaudillère for his ‘girl in a vat’ and Oscar Oliveras for his ‘pruning in Pommard’

Link to /finalists-gallery-2023/

a small venting of my corked wine annoyance…

By billn on May 08, 2023 #warning - opinion!

weekend wines...

Of course, weekend wines – but this selection left me needing to vent:

Yes, it’s only an aligoté but yes, it was horribly corked – you could smell it at a distance as it was being poured down the sink!

But this is also a brilliant cuvée – made by somebody that we have lost – so this is not the way I want to remember him.

And from the 2016 vintage, Gambal sealed their bottles with DIAM. So how corked?

Boisset bought the Gambal operation before the bottling of the 2018s – and for some reason they have never ‘liked’ DIAM. This is the reason that they have failed this particular consumer. The could use Ndtec cork – not perfect but at least 10x better than normal cork – though expensive. Or they could have used one of many, many ‘technical seals’ – it doesn’t have to be DIAM – but in the end, they chose something that meant their product had to be thrown away…

Monday’s pics…

By billn on May 03, 2023 #travels in burgundy 2023#vintage 2023

Most have the vines in the Côte de Nuits now have some leaves and all of those in the Côte de Beaune do.

Looking at the weather forecast, it’s warmer in the coming nights – it looks like we can forget about frost (thumbs up!)

March 2023 Report – now online

By billn on April 30, 2023 #reports

Côte du Py - March 2023The March 2023 Report is now online – 33 domaines including 5 new ones to me.

The domaines are spread over Chablis and Beaujolais plus March marked the return to the Côte d’Or with a trio of domaines that shouldn’t be missed. The coming months will be a mélange of regions, domaines, appellations and climate – but with a little more focus on the Côte d’Or

These reports are still covering the wines of 2021 but a couple of Beaujolais domaines were sold out – so we looked at their 2022s – that’s already 308 published domaine visits since the end of the 2023 harvest – and nobody covers Chablis and Beaujolais in such depth as you will find here…

Enjoy here

The Côte de Nuits in the sunshine

By billn on April 28, 2023 #travels in burgundy 2023

Also some pics from last week – before a little rain came this week!

New owners of the Château d’Etroyes in Mercurey

By billn on April 26, 2023 #the market

News came out, yesterday, of the acquisition of the Château d’Etroyes by the Bollinger group of Champagne. As you will see, the actual Press Release (here) positions this more as an acquisition by Domaine Chanson of Beaune – who are, of course, Bollinger’s arm in the Côte d’Or.

Despite a production covering more than 50 hectares in the area of Mercurey & Rully, plus producing over 20 different cuvées – it’s a name that I confess to not having stumbled across – except for here – and I have one more!

I expect that this will change over the coming years, as this acquisition more than doubles the surface of vines of Domaine Chanson. I also expect that there are multiple synergies to be unravelled in the coming years.

A patchwork of history of the Château d’Etroyes
Whilst the château and some vineyard ownership dates from around 1720, the existing winery of d’Etroyes was founded in 1930 by François Protheau. Following the death of François in 1955, his son, Maurice, took over and expanded the family holdings – in the 1960s the domaine ran to ‘only’ 35 hectares – it was double that at its peak – though only 50 of those hectares were in the Côte Chalonnaise. After 50 years at the domaine, Maurice passed away in 2005, leaving the winery to his children Michelle, Martine & Philippe. The domaine and château had new owners in 2016 – the Helfrich family – who resold in 2018 before the chateau found its latest owners. There are some additional aspects to this transaction in that François Protheau had also a négociant operation with about 10 hectares of vines which produced Mercurey, Montagny and Rully – I’m unsure if this part of the business/vines is also part of the Chanson-Bollinger transaction, or whether they remain in the portfolio of the Côte d’Or’s François Martenot – i.e. the old Maison Béjot.

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