(Taupenot made just over a barrel of wine from 0.5 hectare, which equates to about five hectoliters per hectare): Dark red with ruby highlights. The high-pitched nose communicates a tight kernel of black cherry stomp, spices and stony minerality accented by licorice and black pepper. Densely packed and distinctly powerful but neither unwieldy nor hot; really saturates the palate with medicinal black cherry and licorice. Finishes with broad, serious, fine-grained tannins and noteworthy verve. This very dark, tactile Combe d'Orveau is hard to scrape off your palate.(ST)
Restrained aromas of essence of dark cherry, spice and lovely floral elements introduce succulent, refined and delicious medium-bodied flavors that exhibit plenty of minerality on the mildly austere and dry finish. This is somewhat less elegant than it usually is though it's also more concentrated as well. Note that my predicted range assumes that the mild dryness found on the finish will round out with a few years of bottle age.
The 2016 Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Combe d’Orveau was reduced from eight or nine barrels to just a couple this year due to frost. The bouquet tends toward black rather than red fruit, touches of orange blossom developing with time. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, quite linear and strict with a grainy textured, even tobacco-tinged finish that lingers nicely in the mouth. Though I have a preference for last year's 2015, this is still a decent wine in a difficult, traumatic vintage. Romain Taupenot has been behind the ascent of Taupenot-Merme in recent years. It is almost as if fashion has caught up with them, traditionally furrowing their own path of slightly leaner, terroir-driven wines that were as much about texture as fruit, now many growers have changed back more to this style. Meanwhile, I think Romain has refined the quality here in recent years, the wines showing better integration of whole bunches (although everything was destemmed in 2016), tweaking the fruit up just a shade, certainly achieving more refinement and sophistication. “We were touched mainly by the frost near the forest and mildew affected the regional and village crus.(NM)
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