Cote de Nuits


Showing 1–12 of 15 results

  • Chateau de la Tour Clos-Vougeot Grand Cru 2018

    £169.99

    “The 2018 Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru “Cuvée Classique” displays good amplitude on the nose, incense and iris flower permeating the vibrant black fruit; there is real depth and complexity here. The mineral-driven palate is very well balanced with gentle grip and a chalky finish similar to the Vieilles Vignes. Superb. Drink: 2024-2055. 96 points

    It had been several years since I had sat down and tasted with winemaker and proprietor and president of the BIVB, François Labet. Our previous two meetings were cancelled due to surgery and pandemic respectively, though finally we were able to meet on the first sunny morning of my five-week stretch in Burgundy. I also had the chance to meet Labet’s son, Edouard, who will be stepping into his father’s shoes after entering the domaine in 2018. When Edouard exited the room for a moment, François took the opportunity praise his son, noting the role he has played in revising ideas and practices, including ushering biodynamics into the vineyard, even though organic viticulture was incepted as far back as in 1992. “You cannot see it in the vineyard but you can taste the difference in the wine,” he told me. There is also no SO2 used at harvest, while the use of whole clusters is less dogmatic than in the past.

    Together we tasted through both the 2018s and 2019s for Château de la Tour and Domaine Pierre Labet/François Labet. “It was quite an easy vintage in the vineyard,” François Labet told me. “It was in line with 2018: a warm and long summer. The flowering was difficult in 2019 because it was cold and rainy whereas in 2020 the flowering took three weeks. We had some heat waves in early summer and then the rest was pretty balanced. We started picking the 2019s on 27 August, starting with the old vines and we finished two weeks later. Everyone rushed into the vineyard because they were scared of the heat wave but the forecast of rain meant we took our time. We ended up with 22mm of rain on the second day of the harvest and this changed the fruit. We gained 8% in weight per berry. In one week the vines absorbed that moisture and the berries that were a bit too hard became fleshier. We are extending the barrel ageing for the 2019 so that for the Château de la Tour it is 22 months. I would have liked longer with the 2018s. We do whatever the wines need. We have custom made barrels. We buy the staves and cooper makes the barrels once the wine is made. In 2018 we picked from 4 September for the whites and the 2019 a couple of weeks later. All the wines in 2018 and 2019 are below 14° alcohol.” I also asked him about his approach towards the whites. “We conduct a long press cycle of crushed grapes that is scaled up. There is no SO2 and we allow a micro-oxidation in the vat below the press. Then the juice is transferred into vat and after débourbage [clarification] it is transferred into barrel straightaway with no inoculation. Sylvain Pataille consults for the whites.”

    In the past, it is true that I did not rate Labet’s wines as high as others and so to be frank, I did not know quite what to expect. But I found these wines to be at a higher level than previous vintages. “In my opinion, the kind of wines that we produce at the moment have no equivalent compared to past vintages,” Labet enthused. “We have the right viticulture, picking time and winemaking. Everything is now so controlled.” I concur. These wines conveyed much more purity and elegance than I expected. They did not seem so eager to impress or as hubristic as I found them previously. The result is that they articulate their respective terroirs with greater clarity. Even though the Domaine Pierre Labet wines do not occupy the most prestigious vineyards, they surpass their potential and represent great value. Pushing Labet to compare the two vintages, he opined: “The 2018 is a monster vintage and more muscular. The 2019 vintage is more elegant.” Readers should also note that I have included a wine that Labet makes on the island of Corsica and an intriguing Vin de Pays from a tiny plot of interloping Pinot Beurot, local word for Pinot Gris, located in Clos de Vougeot.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (12/20)

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  • Chateau de la Tour Clos-Vougeot Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru 2016

    £204.99

    “(13.2% alcohol; 18 hectoliters per hectare produced; from vines harvested on September 23): Bright, moderately saturated medium red. Explosive, fruit-dominated aromas of dark berries, cherry, spices, mint, menthol, flowers and minerals. Conveys compelling sappy energy in a silky, medium-bodied package, with its black fruit and herb flavors complicated by a touch of saline minerality. Boasts glorious density of fruit–and near-perfect balance in spite of the very low yield. The very long, rising, perfumed finish offers a serious tannic spine for aging but no rough edges. This penetrating, urgent, classic Clos Vougeot, a standout for the vintage, boasts real pinosity. François Labet told me that, beginning with his 2015s, he did not use enzymes and did not add any sulfur until the middle of the élevage, well after the malolactic fermentations finished. He bottled this 2016 with just 20 parts per million free sulfur and 35 total. Drinking window: 2026-2044. 96 points”

    Stephen Tanzer, Vinous (06/19)

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  • Claude Dugat Gevrey-Chambertin 2017

    £109.95

    “The 2017 Gevrey-Chambertin Village, which matures in 40% new oak, has a lovely red cherry and wild strawberry bouquet that feels delicate and pure. The palate is very well balanced with a fine acidity, lightly spiced with a dash of white pepper towards the finish. It has a directness that is pleasing, a no-frills but quite delicious Village Cru in the making. Excellent. Drinking window: 2012-2026. 89-91 points

    Domaine Claude Dugat is one of the most picturesque wineries, located in the outskirts of Gevrey in an erstwhile tithe barn. Claude Dugat has handed over the reins to his son Bertrand, who works in the cellar, and his daughter Lataetia, out in the vines where organic and now biodynamic tenets are employed – the fifth generation since Maurice Dugat bought the holdings in 1955. This was the first time I tasted with both son and daughter together. There is certainly a revised approach at the domaine, with more emphasis on early picking and modest use of new oak. Bertrand told me that after the dry summer, the vines were thirsty and so the shower just before harvest was much needed. This year he commenced picking on September 3, compared to September 19 in 2016, and was surprised by the good yields. Although Bertrand was only too pleased with a good crop, make no mistake that quantities are tiny even by Burgundy’s standard, with just one-and-a-quarter barrels of the Griotte-Chambertin (the Grand Crus are all matured entirely in new wood.) I have found much to admire in recent vintages. Bertrand Dugat came across tentative in his first couple of vintages, which is better than being over-confident. The purity of fruit and intensity are extremely impressive and whilst not quite as riveting as their splendid 2016s, I admire the expression of each respective terroir, the wines conveying a sense of honesty and transparency. It is no surprise that the Griotte-Chambertin and Chapelle-Chambertin lead the pack, despite the former being shrouded in reduction. Perhaps this year the growing season shaved some length off the Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru, though the Lavaux Saint-Jacques reveals wonderful linearity and persistence.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (01/19)

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  • Domaine de la Vougeraie Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2016

    £179.95

    “The 2016 Charmes Chambertin les Mazoyeres Grand Cru, which is 100% whole cluster from their single parcel of century old vines, has a tightly wound, quite floral bouquet that gradually opens with aeration but remains a little laconic compared to its peers. The palate is medium-bodied with fleshy ripe red berry fruit, fine mineralité, quite dense (especially toward the second half) with touches of blood orange and spice toward the finish. This gets more interesting as it goes along! Good potential. Drink: 2022-2045. 92-94 points

    The big news earlier this year was winemaker Pierre Vincent’s move from Domaine de la Vougeraie to Domaine Leflaive. When key personnel transfer to another company, then it is bound to cause concern about the continued success. Pierre had been instrumental in improving the wines at Vougeraie over his 11-year tenure. Previously, the wines had been rather overextracted and Pierre imbued them with more terroir expression, greater restraint and more class. It was no surprise that Leflaive snapped him up. Winemakers come and go, but the vines stay the same. When I asked about who was taking Pierre’s place, I was informed that rather than highlighting a single person, they would prefer to emphasize that there is a winemaking team, obligatory when you have such a diaspora of vineyards the length and breadth of the region.

    “We used more whole bunches to gain more complexity,” François, one of their winemaking team told me and, indeed, examining the list of wines I can see that several cuvées include 100% whole bunch, even the entry-level “Terres de Famille” red includes 30%. “We found this gave more balance in the reds. We had good results [using whole bunch] with the 2015 and so tried to do the same with 2016. The yields were low and the concentration of the grapes was good. We lost 55% of the production because of frost and lost our Beaune Grèves and Beaune Clos du Roi entirely, although Les Damodes, Le Petit Noizon and Les Clos Blanc did not suffer damage. We started the picking on 15 September with the whites with the Les Clos Blanc. We did a small pigéage. I did not want a brutal extraction, so I used lower fermentation temperatures. The wines are all matured using one-third new, one-third one-year and one-third two-year oak, racked from barrel by barrel, from new into used barrels. I found that the malolactic fermentation in 2016 was longer than in 2015. The wines were racked just before harvest, and I will bottle them a little later in April 2018 rather than end February.”

    With such a wide array of propitious parcels scattered all across the Côte d’Or there is always bound to be a clutch of great wines from Domaine de la Vougeraie. Add into the mix the frost and mildew and ineluctably you will get a lot of variation in quality, and that is the case here. There are crus that I felt were discombobulated by the growing season and only just managed to stumble across the finish line, others that are quite brilliant, both white and red. I will leave readers to peruse the reviews. Buy carefully, and you might have a great and, dare I say, well-priced wine on your hands.”

    Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (234)

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  • Francois Legros Chambolle-Musigny Premier Cru Les Noirots 2018

    £84.95

    “Another name that’s new to my report is Domaine François Legros, in Nuits Saint-Georges. Legros, who took over the domaine in 1988, is one of those “dirt under the fingernails” winemakers, a man who is happiest out working in the vines. “My ancestors worked at Château de la Tour and my parents still live in Vougeot,” he told me. “They lived in the chateau.” He has expanded the holdings to around eight hectares that, unusually, span both white and red in the Côte de Beaune and Côte de Nuits, this diaspora due partly to working parcels previously owned by his father-in-law. He is now assisted by his daughter Charlotte, who trained at the University of Beaune. Legros has converted all his vineyards to lutte raisonée, works some parcels by horse, and hand-picks and sorts his fruit in the vineyard and then on a vibrating table. For the reds, around 90% is de-stemmed, with manual pigeage. He keeps the wines on the lees with no racking, employing around 30% new oak for his Premier Crus. He told me that the whites were bottled the previous week and came in with 13.6–13.8% alcohol. Tasting through his 2020s, I preferred his reds to his whites, which displayed traits of sur-maturité. By contrast, the reds were fresher and more terroir-driven and therefore come recommended. I look forward to returning to this address in the future.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (12/21)

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  • Francois Legros Morey-Saint-Denis Premier Cru Clos Sorbe 2018

    £67.95

    “Another name that’s new to my report is Domaine François Legros, in Nuits Saint-Georges. Legros, who took over the domaine in 1988, is one of those “dirt under the fingernails” winemakers, a man who is happiest out working in the vines. “My ancestors worked at Château de la Tour and my parents still live in Vougeot,” he told me. “They lived in the chateau.” He has expanded the holdings to around eight hectares that, unusually, span both white and red in the Côte de Beaune and Côte de Nuits, this diaspora due partly to working parcels previously owned by his father-in-law. He is now assisted by his daughter Charlotte, who trained at the University of Beaune. Legros has converted all his vineyards to lutte raisonée, works some parcels by horse, and hand-picks and sorts his fruit in the vineyard and then on a vibrating table. For the reds, around 90% is de-stemmed, with manual pigeage. He keeps the wines on the lees with no racking, employing around 30% new oak for his Premier Crus. He told me that the whites were bottled the previous week and came in with 13.6–13.8% alcohol. Tasting through his 2020s, I preferred his reds to his whites, which displayed traits of sur-maturité. By contrast, the reds were fresher and more terroir-driven and therefore come recommended. I look forward to returning to this address in the future.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (12/21)

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  • Francois Legros Nuits-Saint-Georges 2018

    £49.95

    France, Burgundy, Cote de Nuits, Nuits-Saint-Georges, Red

    In Stock

  • Francois Legros Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru Les Perrieres 2018

    £74.95

    France, Burgundy, Cote de Nuits, Nuits-Saint-Georges, Red

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  • Francois Legros Vougeot Premier Cru Les Cras 2018

    £76.95

    “Domaine François Legros comprises fully 57 parcels, up to 50 kilometers apart—a considerable logistical challenge! Yet Legros has cultivated the soils for the last 15 years and works along largely organic lines, excepting only some synthetic anti-mildew treatments in years with elevated disease pressure. Much of the domaine’s Pinot Noir is pruned in cordon, and yields are controlled. Winemaking is simple: a brief cold soak, when punch-downs are employed, followed by three to four weeks’ maceration, with tanks heated to 31 degrees centigrade at the end. After pressing, the young wines are drawn off into barrels from Chassis, Cavin and François Frères, each barrel seeing four liters of lees. The most serious reds see two winters in barrel, with bottling in March. The style here is very classical and charming: no smoke or mirrors, just classic, well-made Burgundy. The insider’s choice is the lovely Vougeot 1er Cru Les Cras, a cuvée well worth seeking out, but everything here comes recommended.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (09/21)

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  • Heresztyn-Mazzini Gevrey-Chambertin Les Jouises Vieilles Vignes 2018

    £59.99

    “The 2019 Gevrey-Chambertin “Les Jouises” Vieilles Vignes is raised in 20% new oak with 50–60% whole bunch. This was quite reduced on the nose and difficult to read. The palate is more open, offering ebullient red fruit, and quite spicy, revealing a liberal sprinkling of black pepper on the finish. Good potential, though it deserves 4–5 years in bottle. Drinking window: 2024-2040. 91-93 points

    Champenoise Simon Heresztyn-Mazzini showed me through his 2019s this year. I noticed a large canvas photograph of him and his wife Florence posing next to Clos Saint-Denis. This year they built a new wall with a plaque to indicate the location of their prized holding à la Jacques Prieur and de Vogüé. “We were lucky because we had no frost during spring. The vineyard grew fast so that was tough, but we had no mildew of oïdium. The summer was wonderful, a bit dry and there was just a bit of blockage in the growth cycle. We are trying to pick the grapes not only when we see the sugar levels but according to phenolic ripeness. We started the harvest on 18 September and finished on 23 September. Yields were 35 to 42hl/ha. The alcohol levels are between 12.6° and 14.2°, quite high but with whole bunches there is a good balance. They don’t have any heaviness. We have been using the Billon cooperage for three years. The barrels can be a bit toasty in the beginning but they assimilate very well. We will add a bit of SO2 during racking and the reds will be bottled next May.” A bit like Duroché, Heresztyn-Mazzini has come out of nowhere in recent years. Though they perhaps do not attract the same fervour and attendant prices of their aforementioned neighbour, they have established a strong and loyal following for their wines that make judicious use of the old vine stock, low intervention winemaking, assiduous use of stems and minimal SO2. Their Clos Saint-Denis is excellent, but where I found the most pleasure vis-à-vis notional price is with their Gevrey-Chambertins La Perrière and Les Champonnets.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (12/20)

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  • Louis Boillot Gevrey-Chambertin 2017

    £59.95

    “From eight different lieux-dits and averaging over sixty years of age, the 2017 Gevrey-Chambertin Village unfurls in the glass with notes of ripe berry fruit, grilled meats and rich soil tones. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied, pure and succulent, with velvety tannins, tangy acids and good length on the finish. 89-91 points

    The 2017 vintage is a great success for this small but superb domaine. During our tasting in the cellar Boillot shares with his wife, Ghislaine Barthod, he observed that the wines “were pretty short to begin with, but they have gained greatly in depth and persistence with élevage”—a judgement readily verified in the glass. While Boillot is an experienced vigneron, his first solo vintage for his own label was 2003, and perhaps that’s why this address still flies under the radar. But with excellent old vine holdings in top appellations, deft winemaking and a classical aesthetic, readers should take note. Ploughed vineyards, destemmed grapes, classical cuvaisons and élevage in a moderate percentage of new barrels are the rudiments of the approach.”

    William Kelley, Wine Advocate (01/19)

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  • Maume Gevrey-Chambertin En Pallud 2019

    £79.95

    “The 2019 Gevrey-Chambertin En Pallud is the largest cru of the domaine, from 0.64 hectares of vine located just below Mazis-Chambertin. It is raised in used barrels apart from one (I tasted from new Francois Freres and used). The precise bouquet presents red cherries, raspberry, crushed stone and wilted rose petals, beautifully focused. The palate is very finessed with silky tannins and pure red fruit. As Pinoté as Pinot Noir can be. I absolutely love this. Drinking window: 2022-2038. 92-94 points

    Back in the day, Maume was the bastion of “traditional Burgundy”. When perceived wisdom was towards lacquering new oak on sensitive Pinot Noir and producers dogmatically adopted Henri Jayer’s principles of complete de-stemming, Maume was one of a handful that stuck to their principles of using whole bunches. The wines were inconsistent as testified by a memorable vertical of Mazis-Chambertin in London a few years ago, but for every wine that they got wrong and tasted vegetal, when they got it right and given requisite bottle age, the wines could be profound. In many ways Maume was ahead of their time, as nowadays numerous producers now proselytize the same tenets. The original holdings were almost entirely bought out by Canadian entrepreneur Murray Tawse to create Domaine Tawse, whose wines can be found in this report.

    Contractually, Maume retained a few morsels of vine and to be honest, since then I have not paid them much attention. However, I did return on this trip, back to their rather dishevelled winery on the RN74. Bertrand’s Maume’s father, Bernard, answered the door. Don’t be deceived by his advancing years. Maume Senior is as sharp as a pin. He spoke eloquently about the terroir of Gevrey and had lost none of his faculties that served him during an illustrious career as a professor at the University of Dijon. Bertrand has had more than his fair share of demons. Despite life’s battle scars when we met, I could not help recall some of the amazing bottles he helped create, as well as observing the bond between father and son. Tasting their 2019s that were picked from 14 September from barrel, it was patently clear that Maume never lost the knack of producing what you might call “fermented wonderment”. I tasted few Village Crus as spellbinding as their 2019 Gevrey-Chambertin En Pallud or a generic red as fine as their 2019 Bourgogne Rouge from the lieu-dit of Les Vignes Blanches, grown on white limestone soils as its name implies. Maume retained a cult following, especially here in the UK, evidenced by the pallets ready to be picked by their transporter. Tasting these 2018s and 2019s I can understand why they continue to have a loyal following.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (12/20)

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