No Burgundian will forget the summer of 2003 (and probably no burgundy lover will forget tasting the wines). Europe experienced a heat wave that was the hottest on record in almost 500 years. The mark of a great vintner, however, is being able to produce exceptional wines, even when faced with challenging weather and growing conditions.
Toronto Vintners started off the new year by tasting 8 red Burgundies on January 20th, 2015. Our guest speaker for the evening was Peter Wearing of the Small Winemakers Collection. Our attendees were served a reception wine, courtesy of The Small Winemakers Collection prior to the formal tasting along with light appetizers and bread accompanying the main tasting portion of the event.
2003 Albert Morot Beaune, Bressandes, 1er cru $57
The Bressandes vineyards are located at the northern end of Beaune's belt of Premier Cru vineyards, near the commune boundary with Savigny-les-Beaune. Beaune Premier Cru Bressandes wines are among the most respected of Beaune wines. “Dense concentrated style, ripe fruit. Bramble jelly. Full rich fruit, slightly soft aspect for the vintage, but not dry.” 4/5 rating, Decanter.com. “Ruby-red color. Knockout nose combines black raspberry, black cherry, licorice and minerals. Suave and aromatic in the mouth, with lovely cut and clarity for such a hot year. Dense but not heavy. Finishes very fine and long, with excellent palate coverage and notes of spice and licorice. Not overly sweet and not a bit roasted. This will age a long time.” 91pts, Stephen Tanzer, Mar/Apr 06
2003 Domaine de Montille - Beaune, Perrieres, 1er cru $79
“Good bright, deep red-ruby. Lively aromas of crushed redcurrant, minerals, smoke and spices. Stony and fine-grained, with more nuance and energy than the Sizies. Vibrant black cherry flavor. At once solid and classy, finishing with suave tannins and very good length.” 89 pts, Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar via. Winemaker’s website.
2003 Domaine du Prince Florent de Merode Corton Les Marechaudes $67
Tucked below the hill of Corton, the small town of Ladoix-Serrigny (the first wine-producing village one arrives at in the Côte de Beaune when driving south from the Côte de Nuits) is dominated by the beautiful Château de Serrigny, family home of the Prince Florent de Merode. The family has owned this property since the early 1700s, and interestingly, it was not broken up during the revolutionary upheaval late in that century. The current Prince has lived at the Château de Serrigny since 1954. Prince de Merode sought to produce wines of more depth, structural integrity and intensity and consequently, the family handed over the reigns to the talented Didier Dubois, who now oversees the vineyards and makes the wine for the property. The wines of Prince Florent de Merode have, for many years, been a watchword for quality that exceeded their modest price. The classic Corton red wine is rich and relatively tannic, meaning that it is quite austere in its youth but develops well with age. Corton tasting notes often refer to flavors of violets, forest berries, leather and earthy notes. 87/100 Burghound.
2003 Rossignol-Trapet - Latricieres-Chambertin $109
“Medium red with a pale rim. Intriguing aromas of dried cherry and plum, brown spices and underbrush. Sweet, velvety and fat; not especially complex or vibrant for this cru but easy going and rich. Finishes with a suggestion of menthol and dusty tannins.” 89pts, Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar via. Winemaker’s website.
2003 Taupenot-Merme - Mayzeres-Chambertin $100
“The wine has a beautiful ruby, dark, young and low clarity. It seems to have been carefully filtered as its brilliance is remarkable. The initial notes of wild strawberry, raspberry and wild mint accents evolve into spicier flavours showing smoke and licorice notes. The wine is straight and very smooth with very fine tannins, and a superb long finish. What a beautiful wine! Excellent.” Translated from P. Essa, dégustateurs.com.
2003 Domaine Lignier Michelot - Les Faconnieres, Morey St Denis, 1er cru $84
“Medium-plus colour. The nose is forward, maybe a hint porty and certainly very ripe but generally the fruit talks of pinot. Ripe, plenty of concentration and very well mannered tannin. The understated acidity provides good balance and just enough freshness.” Burgundy Report, Dec. 2008.
2003 Alain Hudelot-Noellat - Nuits St Georges, Les Murgers, 1er cru $99
Wine Spectator: 88/100. “Although Grand Cru vineyards do not exist in Nuits Saint Georges there are 27 Premiers Crus along with another 10 in Premeaux… Robert Parker, Jr., presents a more studied view, “…There is no doubting that Premiers Crus such as Les Vaucrains and Les Saint-Georges…rival Grands Crus from other villages…there is no question that…northern Premiers Crus vineyards in Nuits-Saint Georges, such as…Aux Murgers can produce wines every bit as stunningly complex, fragrant and rich as their neighbors to the south…All these vineyards produce exceptional Pinot Noir…which rivals the finest Premiers Crus from anywhere in the Cote de Nuits. Unfortunately, the production from these vineyard is small, with…Aux Murgers 12.35 acres…I” Source: http://www.dcflyntmw.com/wine_details.php?name=DOMAINE%20ALAIN%20HUDELOT-NOELLAT%20LES%20MURGERS
2003 Domaine Jean-Marc & Hugues Pavelot Savigny-lès-Beaune aux Guettes, 1er cru $49
“The Pavelot wines are always rich and full of fruit, yet understated and elegant at the same time. They work the vineyards without herbicides, preferring to plough in the traditional manner. The villages wines see no new oak, and the 1er Crus about 15-30% depending on the vineyard and the vintage. They are recognized around the world as the source of some of the best values in all of Burgundy.” (http://www.scottpaul.com/burgundy-import-company/domaine-pavelot) “The taste is accompanied by powerful and elegant silky tannins and a very pleasant fruitiness. Very pleasant in his youth, he has undeniable ability to aging.” Translated from Winemaker’s website.