Burgundy Tasting: Assorted Burgs, Mostly Red

I attended a Burgundy tasting last night and had some interesting wines. Only one long time friend and fellow wine drinker there, I was introduced to two couples I had not met but who all loved wine and Burgundy. There really wasn't a theme, just Burgundy, mostly red Burgundy.

Burgundy Tasting DinnerDecember 17, 2009

Flight 1:

Marc Colin Chassagne-Montrachet Les Caillerets 1er Cru 2004 - This was a very nice Chassagne. Showing only subtle aromas of nuts and smoke, the mouth was more flattering with a creamy texture and sweet, up-front fruit but with a nice acid grip at the back end. This is young and pretty simple at this stage but everything is in the right place.

L'Arlot Nuits-St.-Georges Blanc 1999 - Sadly, this was subtly corked.

Bellavista Convento Della Santissima Annunciata Terre id Franciacorta 2003 - An interesting Italian Chardonnay was pulled to replace the corked wine. Quite different from the white Burg, this had a nutty aroma with hints of oystershell and touches of oxidation that resembled some other northern Italian/Slovenian whites. The mouth was quite impressive with a creamy, dense ripe fruit that almost comes off as sweet. The mouthfeel is quite amazing with a rich, deep texture with a subtle grain to it that is reminiscent of a red wine. Very interesting wine.

Flight 2:

Gouges Nuits-St.-Georges Les St. Georges 2000 - This was unmistakably Les St. Georges with its core of crumbly rocks, earth and iron that run the length of the wine, from nose to finish. The only thing giving it away as a 2000 is its slight dip of intensity and density in the middle. This is very nice right now and will probably last a little while but due to the vintage will probably not get much better.

Chevillon Nuits-St.-Georges Vaucrains 2002 - Vaucrains is a typically a burly wine and this is no exception. From a clearly better vintage, this has dark depths to plumb. Darker and more serious but also with ripe fruit and a hint of young oak vanillin. While this is clearly riper and has much more depth of raw materials and a velvety, rocky feel, it is also very young, not yet showing all it has to offer. Delicious but this really needs time.

Flight 3:

Chandon de Brailles Corton-Bressandes 1988 - I was a bit worried about this wine because it is from a vintage known to have quite coarse tannins, PLUS it is a traditional producer making Corton, which can tend to be a bit burly and rustic anyway. I was very pleasantly surprised. At first this was quite hesitant but with a bit of air opened to show a spicy, herby red fruit which got more meaty and earthy and perfumed as it sat in the glass. A very pretty wine that is soft and luxurious on entry, definitely not hard or coarse. There is a hint of roughness on the finish but this is very very nice. A complete midpalate and a velvety texture, this is in a nice place right now and proof that well made 88's are starting to come around.

Arnoux Romanée-St.-Vivant 1999 - A very generous pull, we all knew this RSV was going to be very young but were eager to try it. Alas, it was very young and closed but on the first whiff if you dug down you could definitely sense a core of dense, crystalline red fruits lurking in the depths. Dense on the palate but with an obvious velvet, intricate texture. While the nobility of this wine was obvious, it was super closed and young. A treat to try at this Burgundy tasting, but really should be held another 10 years or more.

All told, a very nice little line-up of wines at this Burgundy tasting dinner!


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