Archive for the ‘Côte d’Or’ category

De Bortoli Gevrey-Chambertin Combe du Bas 2004

February 10, 2008

img_4156.jpgHow can the New and Old world be better united than in this wine? Made by De Bortoli’s Bill Downie and Steve Webber the fruit is sourced from old vines grown on the Combe du Bas, a climat east of the village of Gevrey-Chambertin. Like any serious Pinot Noir triage of the hand-picked grapes ensured only healthy, undamaged berries went into the wine that has been made according to the philosophy of minimal intervention. The outcome is a ruby red wine with aromas of raspberry, cherry, spice and undergrowth that lead to a straightforward, focused and well balanced palate where fresh primary fruit, firm tannins and ample acidity combine power with finesse. This young wine will develop further complexity over the next 5 to 10 years. 90+ points

Source: De Bortoli  Price: $85  Drink: 2009-2017



Bouchard Pere et Fils Monthélie Clos les Champs Fulliot 2005

January 29, 2008

img_3997.jpgThe appellation of Monthélie is one of the last strongholds of Pinot Noir before the land gives way to the great Chardonnay vines of Meursault, Chassagne and Puligny in the south. The slopes north of the village are adjacent to the renowned vineyards of Volnay, and it is in this area of Monthélie, the Coteau de Volnay, where the best Premier Crus are found. Clos les Champs Fulliot is one of them, situated on the same Bathonian limestone as Volnay’s Clos des Chênes and Les Santenots, but not the same ideal east-southeast exposition of the latter. So this is where terroir kicks in and where faults, combes and a multitude of soiltypes can make an enormous impact as is shown in this wine. Fleshy and taut rather then fragrant and elegant its nose shows a lot of spice, undergrowth, dark cherries, plum and a hint of violets while on the tightly knit and balanced palate robust tannins and firm acidity fully control the underlying fruit characters that scream to be set free. This wine simply needs a couple of years to shake off its youthful clumsiness. 89+

Source: Domaine Wine Shippers  Price: $79.99  Drink: 2010-2016


Pierre-Yves Colin Morey Saint-Aubin La Chatenière 2005

January 17, 2008

img_3762.jpgPierre-Yves Colin is one of Burgundies exciting rising stars. In 1995 he took over winemaking responsibilities at his father’s domaine Marc Colin but 10 years later he decided to focus entirely on his own micro-négociant business. Nothing special at first sight, apart from the fact that through his contacts with numerous growers and producers Pierre-Yves is able to source minute quantities of their best wines. Either he is allowed to pick the best barrels or he fills his own with the best juice after which he throws in his own winemaking skills to finish the wines in his preferred style. To build a portfolio that includes wines from the best sites of Saint-Aubin, Meursault, Pulingny-Montrachet, Chassagne-Montrachet and the Grand Crus Chevalier Montrachet and Corton-Charlemagne is simply exceptional. This Saint-Aubin comes from one of the village’s best Premier Cru vineyards, the steep and stony La Chatenière. Straw yellow in the glass the wine exudes lovely aromas of lemon, stonefruit, hazelnuts and spicy oak. The palate shows well integrated flavours of lemon, nectarine and white peach all framed by a generous creamy texture before a finish with ample mineral acidity. A highly enjoyable wine that should drink well over the next couple of years. 92 points

Source: Vintage & Vine/Liquid Library  Price: $85  Drink: Now-2011

Domaine Collotte Chambolle Musigny 2005

November 17, 2007

img_3767.jpgTo define quality most writers use descriptors that indicate the texture, balance, complexity, power and length of a wine. A very good wine must have another dimension though, one that indicates terroirmaking it true to its origin. The 2005 Chambolle Musigny from Phillipe Collotte shows this dimension extremely well. The excellent situated Aux Échanges, fruit from mature vines and yields at only 35 hl/ha form the viticultural ingredients for a wine that stands well above its communal level. Intensely ruby-red in the glass it displays a beautiful scented nose of raspberries, cherries, spices and some earth while the silky delicacy of the palate underpins the elegance and femininity of a wine from this appellation. And of course, balance, complexity, length, good acid and subtle tannins, it’s all there but for me it is the typicité that makes the difference. 91 points. 

Source: Vintage & Vine/Liquid Library  Price: $85  Drink: Now-2013+

Domaine Dujac Gevrey-Chambertin Aux Combottes 2004

October 31, 2007

img_3633.jpgOne of the many options in red winemaking is the destemming or égrappage of grapes. Retaining all or a part of the stems in the fermenting must slightly decreases colour and can leave bitter and astringent characters in the wine but when only very ripe bunches are carefully selected it enhances the overall complexity and structure. In Burgundy there is a lot of disagreement about this issue. While devote followers of the late Henri Jayer clearly steer away from this practice heavyweights like DRC and Dujac use a high proportion of stems which is clearly visible in this wine. Ruby red in the glass the vegetal and stemmy characters initially step to the foreground supported by a lot of spicy and smoky oak. The palate has a fascinating mouthfeel with breadth and weight across the palate while it offers dense fruit, fine tannins and fresh acidity that cuts right through your palate. It’s clear that this is a wine that needs to express itself, to communicate with its drinker and the only way to allow this is to give it time. This is illustrated best by when I looked at it a day later with the wine having undergone a complete transformation. The green characters had stepped back significantly while intense aromas of cherry and red berries now played a prominent role paired to an equally impressive palate that slowly builds in the mouth. To get the most out of it I would leave it in the cellar for another 3 years or so. 92 points.

Source: Negociants Australia  Price: $169  Drink: 2010-2018


Bruno Clair Aloxe-Corton 1999

May 9, 2007

img_2705.jpgWhen Bruno Clair started his domaine in 1979 it only consisted of a few parcels in Marsannay, Fixin, Morey-Saint-Denis and Savigny-les-Beaunes. Over the next fifteen years he extended his domaine with holdings in several Grand- and Premier Crus vineyards all over the Côte d’Or. Conscientious viticulture – based on lutte raisonée– and excellent winemaking is reflected in wines that are of consistently high quality. This wine, made of grapes from Les Crapoussuets and the Premier Cru vineyard Les Valozières, shows that good red Corton is about richness, depth and elegance, a hallmark of Clair’s wines in particular and something I’d like to see in any Pinot Noir in general. Through bottle- ageing the initial power of the wine has given way to even more finesse and with its fresh primary fruit characters still dominant, balanced acidity and velvetly tannins this Corton demonstrates its ability to age very well. 90 points.

Source: Negociants Australia  Price: $95 Drink: Now-2010


Bouchard Père et Fils Monthélie Les Duresses 1999

May 5, 2007

img_2699.jpgIt is often said that the red wines from Monthélie are reminiscent of those from neighbouring Volnay but in a less elegant and delicate form. That’s why the price is more friendly. Monthélies offer even more value when the wine is from a premier cru vineyard, a trusted négociant as Bouchard Père et Fils and a great vintage. With its ruby colour the wine still looked very young for its age. On the nose it showed few signs of ageing with raspberry and spice being dominant. The palate is soft, round and well balanced and the mouthdrying grainy tannins suggested the wine could have handled some more years in the cellar. 89 points.

Source: Domaine Wine Shippers Price: $65 Drink: Now-2010