The 2018 Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Les Suchots is showing brilliantly this year, wafting from the glass with a deep-pitched bouquet of cassis, blackberries, spices and dark chocolate. On the palate, it's full-bodied, rich and enveloping, its textural attack segueing into a deep and layered core, concluding with a long and penetrating finish. Charles Van Canneyt has surpassed himself with the 2018 vintage, producing a set of wines that rivals his 2016s and 2015s as his finest to date. Deep, textural and incipiently complex, these are powerful but elegant wines that display a sense of energy and dynamism that some of the year's reds lack. Followers of Domaine Hudelot-Noëllat will be familiar with Van Canneyt's approach in the cuverie and cellar: The predominantly destemmed fruit, retained intact, is fermented in cement tanks for a classical maceration of two to three weeks. Élevage is in barrels emphasizing François Frères, with Cavin in a supporting role, and lasts fully 18 months with the exception of the Bourgogne Rouge, bottled before harvest. These in essence uncomplicated methods, combined with an enviable palette of appellations planted with notably old vines, produce elegant, charming wines with impressive substance and aging potential. I've been buying them for my own cellar since my student days, so this is an address I warmly recommend. (WK)
The 2018 Vosne-Romanée Les Suchots 1er Cru has a typically opulent, generous bouquet, as one would expect from this vineyard, armed with precocious black cherries, cassis and violet aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins, a fine bead of acidity, a little more density than the Beaux Monts and a long, tender orange peel and white pepper finish. This is an excellent 2018 from Hudelot-Noellat. (NM)
This is the first wine to exhibit any appreciable reduction and it's enough to mask the fruit. More interesting are the velvety, generous and extremely rich flavors that coat the palate with sappy dry extract on the bitter cherry pit-inflected finale. As is usually the case, this is not as refined but it's definitely more powerful.
Suchots is quite a way further down the slope than Beaumonts and is always a riper wine as a result, which in 2018 gives it a bit more of a roasted character here (again, very reminiscent of a 1990 Vosne), but still with plenty of complexity and breed. The nose wafts from the glass in a mix of roasted cassis, blackberries, roasted meats, dark soil tones, a bit of coffee grounds, bonfire and a topnote of Vosne spices. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and nicely plush at the core, with far more mineral drive on the backend than the nose suggests, good focus and grip and a long, ripely tannic finish. This is a very good bottle in the making and I am sure that some might prefer its more flamboyant style than that of the Beaumonts, but I have a slight preference for the latter. (Drink between 2028-2060)
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