2013 overall was a quite a difficult year with rain leading to mildew which meant yields were low and selective picking at harvest was a necessity.
Tasting en primeur is about showing the potential of wines and what they can offer in future years, which is good for investment or personal enjoyment.
Starting at the northern part of Burgundy where Chardonnay shines in its purist fruit, Chablis. Domains des Malandes showed beautiful wines. We got to taste the tank sample of 2014 Petite Chablis which showed great zesty mineral freshness and will be great value for money.
Lyne Marchive said for her, 2013 is much more approachable for early drinking whereas 2014’s are showing the typical Chablis style, with much more acidity.
I enjoyed the Chablis vinified in stainless steel, huge acidity, great mineral character, citrus fruit and great length. The Chablis Tour de Roy 2013 I felt was elegant and and powerful, partly vinified in 1-5 year old oak, gives an extra depth and richness. Tropical and stone fruit, delicate touch of oak offering a touch of spice with a lovely mouth feel. Great value for money in the world of Burgundy.
Chablis 1er Cru Cote de Lechet 2013 is typical of Chablis, all stainless steel it shows the purity of fruit and that direct acidity you would expect. If you love your classic Chablis then this is perfect. I enjoyed the power and complexity of this wine without the use of oak, thus showing the terroir through the grape.
If you are a Grand Cru lover the Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos 2013 shows real flinty character, with beautiful lemon fruit and a delicate toasty note finish. Chablis Grand Cru Vaudesirs 2013 showed more stone fruit, peach with great spicy notes with a rich fruit finish.
The Macon region in my opinion shows the fatter side of Chardonnay, and I loved the Vins Auvigue Pouilly Fussie Vieilles Vignes 2012 (unfortunately the 2013’s are still in France) this didn’t matter as this was beautiful rich in fruit, creamy texture with acidity to balance, scrumptious length and rich mouth feel.
Richard Rottiers from Moulin a Vent Beaujolais is the son of Lyn Marchive from Chablis, he started in 2007. Working organically with biodynamic practices such as tea compost. The Moulin a Vent Le Dernier Souffle 2013 showed great potential, with an open nose but slightly closed on the palate. This will open up in the spring, as like many of us it likes to hibernate in winter. Souffle means last breath, apparently the vineyard is next to a graveyard.. Hence last breath!
Domain Capuano-Ferreri et Fils whose family originated from Tuscany, now have 16ha in the Cote Chalonnaise. The Mercury 1er Cru Clos du Paradis 2013 had a beautiful creamy texture great integration of oak, without the losing the acidity, leading to a delicate toasty finish.
I haven’t even mentioned Pinot Noir yet! We had the pleasure of tasting their 2008 Santenay 1er Cru La Comme, showing how the Pinot noir can develop, still showing lots of red berry fruit and wonderful fragrance finishing with a touch of savoury character that you have with Pinot noir when aged.
Burgundy’s main grape varieties are Chardonnay and Pinot Noir which makes that part ( and that part alone) easy. There are a couple of other minor grapes used, one being Pinot Blanc. Fougeray de Beauclair Marsannay Blanc les Saint Jacques 2013 showed beautiful delicate white flower, soft white stone fruit, with fresh crisp acidity. 3-4months in old oak.
Domaine A.F Gros and Francois Parent, showed an exceptional flight of wines all 2013. Starting with Chassange Montrachet Morgeot 1er Cru, superb fruity intergration with oak, elegant rich and on going length!
The Savigny les Beaune Clos des Guttes 1er Cru had beautiful fragrnace, Vosne Romanee Clos de la Fontaine Monoploe soft berry fruit, with soft velvet tannins. Followed by the darker fruit and supple tannins of Vosne Romanee Aux Reas.
Chambolle Musigny was a delight with its freshness, while Pommard Les Pezerolles 1er Cru showed much more jammy fruit with spice and power.
To finish the tasting it was a great pleasure to taste Richebourg Grand Cru. I have to be honest I became unprofessional at this point and decided not to spit this out. At £425 a bottle you can understand why.
The fragrance of the Pinot Noir really came through, with layers of red berry fruit with a touch of liquorice and spice. The length complexity of this wine was sublime. I took a moment out to taste and closed my eyes as it’s not every day I have the pleasure of such a wine.
A full list of wines and prices will be out shortly for you to order.