The 2016 Rugiens from Céline Fontaine is a beautiful wine in the making as well, but I get the sense that there is just not quite the same energy here as in the stunning Clos des Chênes this year, which I would attribute this to the vines struggling to ripen the fruit perfectly as they strive against the leaf roll virus. So, one does not get quite the same sense of gorgeous sappiness in the 2016 Rugiens as in the Clos des Chênes, but the wine is pure, complex and beautifully balanced in all other respects. The bouquet wafts from the glass in a fine, red fruity blend of cherries, quince, woodsmoke, complex soil tones, a touch of currant leaf and a topnote of rose petals. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, transparent and deep at the core, with ripe tannins, good acids and fine focus and grip on the long, complex and classy finish. 2026-2065.
(from a .21 ha parcel). Here too there is evident but not dominant wood present on the pretty essence of red pinot fruit, lavender, spice and soft earth-scented aromas. The sleek, delicious and caressing middle weight plus flavors also brim with minerality that continues onto the dusty, long and more harmonious finish. Lovely.
The 2016 Pommard 1er Cru Les Rugiens was broody and a little introverted on the nose, probably due to be racked sooner than some of the more expressive Volnays. The palate is crisp and taut with cranberry and redcurrant fruit, a good backbone with a nicely poised, quite feminine (for a Pommard) finish that gently caresses. This is a delightful Pommard Rugiens that should give a decade's worth of drinking pleasure. (NM)
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