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Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet 2018

Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet 2018

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"The 2018 Puligny-Montrachet Village has a taut, crisp bouquet with scents of wet limestone, sea spray and green apple. There is fine delineation here, and more intensity than I was anticipating for a Village Cru. The palate is well balanced with subtle passion fruit and citrus notes on the entry, good weight in the mouth and fine acidity, though not as complex on the finish as other Village Crus I have tasted from Leflaive. Therefore I suspect this will be ideal for early drinking. Drinking window: 2021-2030. 88-90 points

I met proprietor Brice de la Morandière with winemaker Pierre Vincent , who joined in 2017 from Domaine de la Vougeraie, at their barrel cellar in Puligny-Montrachet. It was nice to return having not visited for a year or two. "It was a warm year," de la Morandière commented. "The crucial decision was that we green harvested all the vineyards in July, sometimes up to 40% of the bunches. I know that this is considered a sin in Puligny-Montrachet, but the fact is that we had two or three times more bunches than we needed. This risked us losing concentration. We commenced the harvest on 26 August and finished on September, the Mâcon-Verze picked from 3 to 10 September. In the end, we found that the balance was good in terms of alcohol and acidity." I was pleased to taste Leflaive's Mâconnais wines - they are often overshadowed by their Pulignys and might well constitute their best values. The standout for me was their stunning Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes, in no small part since it was affected by millerandage and this naturally seems to have concentrated the wine. Among the Grand Crus, the Chevalier-Montrachet predictably has the edge, though do not overlook their rather splendid Bienvenue-Bâtard-Montrachet."

Neal Martin, Vinous (01/20)