The 2015 Chambertin Clos-de-Beze Grand Cru has another very well-defined bouquet with tightly wound red berry fruit, crushed rose petals and subtle sous-bois aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, quite understated in style after the Clos Saint-Jacques with slightly savory red fruit towards the grainy-textured finish. The persistence is impressive, although I cannot help feeling that the Clos Saint-Jacques has the sophistication, the breeding, the je ne sais quoi. Bruno Clair already has an impressive array of holdings in the Côtes de Nuits, from which he has been furnishing wine lovers with beautifully made, quite classically-styled wines for many years. Next year he will add another quite significant parcel of Bonnes-Mares from the cessation of a fermage with Domaine Fougeray de Beauclair, who own the monopole of vines on the Morey-Saint-Denis side of the border. That will surely make Bruno one of the most significant producers of this grand cru. I tasted through the 2015s with winemaker Philippe Brun and a young student who was studying oeno-tourism, assigned 2-weeks by her college at the domaine (I can think of worse work placements myself). "We had some millerandage during the growing season," Philippe told me. "We picked from 6 September and then over 10 days until 20 September. We picked the whites within two days."
(these vines were picked on September 9): Healthy medium red. Pungently floral aromas and flavors of raspberry, crushed stone, underbrush and rose petal. Delivers a superb combination of thickness and lift, with its captivating sweetness perfectly buffered by underlying smoky mineral tension. Conveys an almost chocolatey impression but the alcohol here is a moderate 12.9%. Most impressive today on the very long, rising finish, where the ripe tannins are perfectly integrated.
(two-thirds of the .98 ha parcel of vines was planted in 1912 and the remainder in 1973). This too is cool, elegant, spicy and even more complex with its range of airy red berries, underbrush, earth, sandalwood and anise nuances. There is excellent richness, power and mid-palate density to the big-bodied but not massive flavors that exhibit a subtle minerality on the mouth coating and hugely long finish. This is certainly an imposing wine yet the mouthfeel is one of class and grace and interestingly for such a young Bèze, there is virtually no austerity. Wow. 2035+
Planted in part with 105 year old vines. A dense nose of cherries and a hint of black fruits, though brooding and inexpressive now. A dense attack which has power as well as drive and finesse. Seamless tannins, and an urgent but not aggressive acidity. Long finish, with superb ageing potential.Drinking Window 2020 - 2040. (SB)
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2016 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits-St-Georges 1er Cru "Clos des Porrets St-Georges" (Pre-Arrival)