There are aromatic similarities between this and the 2007 – wide, interesting yet perhaps just a little diffuse – the fruit just needs a little polish to bring it completely into focus. In the mouth this is a little less like the 07 – clearly there’s another level of intensity, the flavour just grows and grows. Different in character but with similar interest.
Medium golden. Plenty of sweet toasted bread, brioche indeed – (very) nice as it is, it does rather smother any obvious Chassagne-ness. There is a decent whack of concentration though the personality is reasonably direct rather than round. Just about perfect acidity accentuated a little agrumes fruit and a finishing sweet note from the barrel that reminds you of the brioche nose, pus a little toffee. Initially, despite how delicious it is, I find the oak influence is obscuring the vineyard; given about 1 hour your mouth starts to water with plenty of mineral flavour that actually does hint to Chassagne. Despite the caveats, simply delicious.
A faint creme brûlée floats over green and yellow citrus notes – you have to wait some time before the classic Chassagne green herbs finally appear – it’s a tight and ripe at the core. The entry is silky but quite understated, indeed indifferent, but the mid-palate just launches you into the next dimension with minerals, agrumes fruit, mouth-watering acidity and really super intensity. You’re left with a long line of finishing flavour. This is really super.
The bottle, I’m afraid to say, seems the glass equivalent of a red sports car; heavy, and with a punt into which you could lose your arm. Clearly the nose ushers in the presence of quite a bit of oak, a little transient gunflint/struck match too, yet this is far from jarring wood, indeed it is very well polished. In the mouth I have a faint hint of surprise; despite a perfectly smooth texture, this is a wine that’s clearly cut from the chalk of Perrières; mineral with some 08 tension and undoubted density and intensity. There are a few other MPs that I might might prefer to drink, all of them lower priced, but this is a very fine wine – no discussion. I have the impression of pear fruit on the palate yet without a hint of obvious sweetness. Very good line into the considerable finish. Clearly I have listened to too much hearsay, because this is super wine.
Gradually there are some higher, floral tones and eventually a few flashes of tobacco too, but mainly this has a deeper register of dark fruit buttressed by equally dark oak. Round, plenty of sweet depth, just a little cushioning, balanced by close to perfect acidity. There’s plenty of flavour here, but I really can’t find the ‘Beaune’, and that’s because such a large part of the flavour profile is the sweetness of dark oak. Despite that oak, this has quite a measure of elegance – this is a lovely wine – but it needs to shed a lot of non-grape derived flavour before it becomes a lovely Beaune.
Medium, medium-plus colour. The nose has a depth of dark red fruit with just a faint sweetness and eventually a characterful twist of tobacco. This is lovely; a depth of fresh dark fruit, just enough texture to give a slightly cushioned satin impression and tannins that are oh-so silky – one of Alexandrine Roy’s signatures I think. Long for a villages with just a hint of aniseed and blue fruit flavour. A wine that was very, very much appreciated.
Full, round and very complex aromas – never a classic wine of Chassagne to me – but super it its own way. Lush and rich yet with excellent acidity and energy. Surely some creamy barrel aspects but the layers of flavour are so compelling. Is there anything missing? Perhaps just a hint of Caillerets minerality; with that, it could have been the best 2008 I tasted at home this year.