Claude Dugat Gevrey-Chambertin 2017


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“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)