The only wine with 100% new oak – only 2 barrels from two different coopers. The nose starts a little diffuse but slowly opens up a nice fruit compote. Very silky – the tannins are largely burried. The flavour goes long, long. Much more executive and ‘tailored’ than the Clos de Vougeot but less energy – probably because that wine is not yet bottled.
The colour is medium, medium-plus cherry red with a faint purple rim. When first opened, there’s deep scent of faintly musky dark fruit, slowly the muskiness fades and the dark cherry moves to the fore, even accented by creaminess. More and more the nose fills and rounds out with higher tones – despite the dark fruit profile it’s a very elegant and lovely nose. In the mouth there’s very fine tannin that adds a little texture, fresh acidity and fruit that really imposes itself only from the mid-palate – but it widens nicely and has good depth.
Again starts with a floral perfume, though darker-skinned fruit aromas start to take-over, eventually it takes on a slightly more savoury aspect and maybe with a hint of reduction(?) at any rate, there are numerous darker elements. This is not quite so ripe as the ‘Cave 18’, but appears more taught and together. The tannins are a little grainy and the nice freshness brings a good lift in the mid-palate – certainly more depth than the bourgogne. A nice wine.
The name is a little fun – the stocks of Claire’s wines are held in ‘area 18’ in the cellars at Laboure-Roi, but Claire also thought the name was quite nice, in the manner of ‘Bin 28’ – I must remember to bring her a bottle next time! The old (a mix of 50 and 80 years-old) vines, despite being sited in an old vineyard in the area of Beaune are only classed as ‘regional’, that said, they ripen very early and in 2007 were some of the cleanest fruit the team worked with. Good colour. The nose starts in a pronounced floral way, slowly changing in the glass to offer more ‘straight-forward’ red fruits and eventually a nice, soft caramel aspect. A slightly soft entry with interesting fruit and a nice balance. Interesting and worthy bourgogne if well priced.
In bottle just for 2 weeks. A little more depth to the colour. The nose is more fruit-driven and nicely transparent – violets push through too. Fills the mouth, but also shows a nice mineral ‘tension’. The tannins are more forward but will fade in the bottle. Nice finish here. This is fresh and very engaging.
This is actually from the village lieu-dit of ‘Clos des Cave des Ducs’, sat high on the hillside on thin chalky soils – marnes blanches to the locals. Good colour. Tight on the nose, subtle fruit aromas. High quality in the mouth, clean yet very nicely textured with understated but mouthwatering acidity. Very pretty.