revue de presse
10 mois après la récolte 2018 et mon coup de gueule - tellement justifié - sur les récoltes corrigées, trop abondantes et insuffisamment mûres...on observe que la qualité des blancs varie en fonction de la concentration et du manque de maturité!
En 2017 comme en 2018 il fallait impérativement être patient pour récolter des fruits équilibrés susceptibles de ne pas être corrigés par des actes oenologiques inconsidérés.
Olivier Poussier - meilleur sommelier du Monde et rédacteur à la Revue Des Vins de France - apporte une observation signifiante sur notre travail - et donc nos choix de récolte et de vinification - en postant sur les résultats des dégustations du futur Guide Vert 2020.
Être à ses yeux la référence du millésime pour nos Meursault n’a pas de prix et valide l’ensemble du travail mené par toute l'équipe du domaine.
Merci a lui.
Parmi les accessits qui existent dans le milieu du vin - critiques, médailles,articles de presse, évaluation de journalistes indépendants - l'un de ceux qui nous fait le plus plaisir est le regard que porte sur notre domaine la très ancienne Revue du vin de France.
Nous sommes ainsi très heureux de pouvoir annoncer à nos clients cette bonne nouvelle qui confirme que nos choix exigeants - et parfois même risqués lors de la définition de dates de vendanges - ont été payés de retour.
Juste avant les vendanges 2017 - que nous commencerons le 5 Septembre- la motivation est Grande pour poursuivre notre quête de prigression en essayant de placer la barre de la qualité toujours plus haute.
Visite au domaine Buisson-Charles à Meursault, juillet 2017
Mes origines cauchoises sont certainement la cause et la raison de mon tempérament hélas trop prudent et sectaire. Il en est pour les vins comme dans la vie : en rouge, je suis quasiment arrivé à ne plus aimer que les vins de Bourgogne, les autres me donnant trop souvent des déceptions ; quant aux blancs, je suis heureusement un peu plus éclectique et il arrive que je me fasse bien plaisir avec des cuvées extra-bourguignonnes (comprenez par "extra", l'inverse de "intra") ... Pourtant, là aussi j'ai besoin d'un repère, d'une référence, d'un symbole, d'une association ... Pour mon frère, cette association vin blanc/appellation est certainement "Chablis", pour d'autres "Sancerre", d'autres encore, plus ouverts, se disent "peu importe l'appellation du moment que c'est bon", mais en ce qui me concerne, mon leitmotiv est : "la quintessence du vin blanc, le meilleur représentant des cuvées légèrement dorées, le maillot jaune des ambroisies aux arômes de fleurs et de fruits de verger et de buisson, c'est MEURSAULT !". Vous imaginez alors combien mon étape murisaltienne est pour moi importante lors d'un séjour bourguignon !
S'il m'arrive assez souvent d'acquérir quelques cuvées situées entre Volnay et Puligny dans les salons viniques que je fréquente, vous vous doutez bien maintenant que vous me connaissez mieux, qu'il me faut un repère (non orthonormé) dans ce village ... mon choix, mais aussi, quelque part, ma curiosité ( eh oui ! ça m'arrive aussi, moins souvent que le commun des mortels, mais ça arrive ...) se sont portés, depuis une dizaine d'années, sur le domaine BUISSON-CHARLES !
Nous arrivons avec une demi-heure de retard et bien que nous ayons prévenu par téléphone, je ne pense pas que ce contretemps a été remarqué, car le domaine est en travaux et nous avons trouvé les propriétaires (nouvelle et ancienne génération) attentifs à la confection d'une dalle bétonnée dont l'inclinaison relevait de la complexité (je plains les pauvres maçons dont la démarche était examinée non seulement et ce qui est bien normal, par les personnes intéressées, mais aussi par des anonymes, surtout moi qui n'y connais rien !).
Patrick, voyant que ça se passait comme il avait prévu, nous invite à descendre avec lui en cave. D'abord, il nous montre l'agrandissement et j'ai enfin le loisir de voir (de mes yeux ... plutôt de mes lunettes) les voûtes multiséculaires d'une dépendance de l'ancien château de Meursault : quand on pense qu'elles étaient déjà fondées lors du supplice de Jeanne d'Arc, cela fait réfléchir les passionnés d'Histoire dont je fais partie ... et je me dis que je ne suis pas venu pour rien, même si la dégustation s'arrête là !
Ensuite le maître des lieux s'en retourne vers les barriques et l'instant de vérité commence en ce qui concerne le millésime 2016 :
1) Cuvée qui embaume les fleurs et les fruits blancs ; les mêmes saveurs se retrouvent aussi franchement en bouche : ça commence fort ! c'est un Meursault "Vieilles Vignes".
2) Cuvée beaucoup plus cryptée mais plus profonde aussi ... en fait elle me ressemble (je ne sais pas si c'est à son avantage, mais moi ça me convient), le premier contact laisse une impression froide eu égard à la cuvée précédente, mais ensuite s'affirment une flamme affable, un besoin de découvrir la "substantifique moelle", une richesse qui brille de l'intérieur (pour toutes ces qualités, oubliez la comparaison avec votre serviteur) ... Meursault "Les Tessons". Coup de cœur !
3) Un échange plus liquoreux pour ce troisième échantillon, une matière plus vineuse ... un autre monde, je suis un peu désorienté, sommes-nous encore sur Meursault ? Beaucoup de possibilités me traversent la tête : Les Cras, les différents Chassagnes et même l'Aligoté ... bien que cela me semble bien riche pour un aligoté, mais ici, la parcelle "Sous le chemin" m'a déjà fait passer pour un idiot ... en fait je suis complètement perdu ... c'est à la fois avenant et grand, subtil et profond ... bien sûr je n'émets aucun commentaire et Patrick découvrira ces réflexions que s'il lit ce CR : Puligny-Montrachet "Le Cailleret".
4) Ici, je pense que j'aurais reconnu sans indication ; cette cuvée repose sur la finesse, l'équilibre, la pureté ... j'ai l'impression que le concepteur n'est pas intervenu ... il s'est laissé guider par Dame Nature ... selon moi, la consistance murisaltienne par excellence :Meursault "Les Bouchères (Les Bouches Chères)". Coup de cœur !
5) Pour cette cuvée qui va clôturer le millésime 2016, notre hôte nous dit tout de go qu'il s'agit d'un Chablis : les arômes sont plus iodés, plus salins, plus citronnés ... la matière est légèrement perlante (néologisme ?) ... c'est bon, c'est bien fait ... mais ça appartient à un autre monde : Chablis "Vaudésir".
Nous passons alors au millésime 2015 en bouteilles :
1) Bourgogne Aligoté (Patrick nous l'a annoncé) qui ne passe pas inaperçu après les grandes cuvées précédentes ; la matière est finement ciselée et profonde ; dès mon retour, j'ouvre une bouteille dont la profondeur est moins présente, ce qui prouve qu'une longue aération est indispensable et surtout le respect d'une température autour de treize degrés, sinon vous allez le martyriser ! Bourgogne Aligoté "Sous le chemin".
2) Une cuvée plus fruitée et plus imposante que la précédente : Meursault "Vieilles vignes".
3) Cuvée qui s'appuie sur des arômes et des saveurs de fruits blancs bien marqués (surtout la poire) ; la matière est fine et savoureuse : Meursault "1945" (ce vin n'est pas passé sous bois neuf).
4) Les arômes s'appuient sur une fraîcheur mentholée ; la matière est bien présente, profonde et irradiante ... que c'est bon ... Meursault "Les Tessons". Coup de cœur.
5) Patrick nous dit ensuite qu'il nous propose la cuvée qu'il a, selon lui, la mieux réussie en 2015... je reprends un peu sa description : "saveurs de peaux de raisin rôties" et j'ajouterais "raisins de Corinthe". Je comprends ce qu'il a voulu dire ... si nous devions faire une comparaison avec l'architecture d'une église rouennaise, je dirais l'intérieur de l'église Saint Romain pour son côté baroque ; c'est vraiment séduisant, alléchant, surprenant mais un peu loin, me semble-t-il, de ce que l'on peut attendre d'un Meursault ... classique : Meursault "Les Cras".
Je suis d'ailleurs surpris que la parcelle située le plus au Nord du village produise un vin aussi "excentrique" au sens étymologique, mais je suis persuadé que dans plusieurs années, il sera le compagnon idéal de noix de Saint-Jacques légèrement ... "rôties" ... dans leur suc !
6) Cuvée beaucoup plus murisaltienne dans l'âme : finesse, pureté, profondeur ... l'association avec l'église Saint-Maclou, "le joyau de la ville aux cent clochers" me paraît idéale : Les Bouchères de Meursault sont au vignoble bourguignon, ce que le gothique flamboyant est à la sculpture sur pierre ! Coup de cœur.
7) Cette cuvée rouge servira de conclusion : arômes envoûtants sur les petits fruits rouges, les épices, le sous-bois ... bouche aimable et profonde ... produisant une mâche noble, à la fois charnue et équilibrée : Volnay "Santenots". Coup de cœur.
Nous avons fait cette dégustation en compagnie d' un couple fort aimable, avec qui j'ai pu échanger quelques mots à propos de la qualité des vins du domaine : le monsieur me parlait de netteté, point pour lequel j'adhère sans aucune réserve ... les vins de ce domaine sont remarquablement purs, si bien que nous avons l'impression que le producteur n'intervient pas, mais se laisse guider par la Nature.
Après avoir pris tous les risques pour vendanger tardivement en expliquant les raisons nous ayons conduit par convictions et raisonnements à ces choix pour équilibrer nos vins...Les résultats sont là! :
Santenots,Charmes et Goutte d'Or: 93/100
Bouches-Chères,Romanée et Caillerets 92/100
Vaudésir,Tessons, Puligny Caillerets et Meursault "Vignes de 45": 91/100
"Je voudrais catégoriser le domaine Buisson-Charles comme ayant clairement "sur-performé" dans le millesime 2015"
Tasted in Meursault with Patrick Essa, 08 March, 2017.
3 Rue de la Velle
Tel: +33 3 80 21 22 32
Patrick on 2015:
“Really excellent. It was a super harvest and I hope with great wines to follow. For harvesting it’s not a question of acidity; the first people started 23rd August, others the 5th or 6th of September – such a gap is really rare. I think there should be great wines for the patient. Here we began harvesting our reds on the 5th, and our whites on 6th – we finished on the 13th. Despite even (in the end) 13.2° for our Bourgogne Rouge, I had very regular fermentations.”
Patrick on his 2016 yields:
“Because of frost, we had between 30% and zero in our villages plots – though our Meursault in Pellans wasn’t touched – I also decided that some Pommard should be declassified into the Bourgogne. A further 6 barrels of Meursault came from a second harvest in October from later ripening, tiny grapes – and it’s really quite tasty and also quite Meursault – it seems more mineral if less balanced today – I might declassify but will wait and see. On the other hand, some 1er Crus in Meursault or on the hillsides delivered perfectly normal yields – for instance Tessons, normally yields 7 barrels and we had 6. Gouttes d’Or was the most affected by the frost here. Our work and yields are exactly the same as the 1ers as in the Bourgogne – so it’s an expensive Bourgogne at 18 euros, but it sells easily. We are ‘Bio‘ not biodynamic. I made one contact treatment in 2016, and in fact made ‘only‘ 10 treatments, seeing just a little oïdium in Tessons. So-far, I prefer 2015, but 2016 is a super vintage.”
First a tour through some 2016s – but no notes as there was a mix of mid- and no-malo wines – then the 2015s. We did discuss Patrick’s Aligoté which is usually at the very highest end of the quality-scale for this cepage – “The density of planting is 16,000 per hectare, and I’m now pruning Guyot-Poussard and training a little higher. I’ve been pruning like this for the last two years and see good aeration and less maladies, but okay, it’s still a little early to judge…”
A brilliant selection here – bravo! Proving that there is no one truth in when to harvest – even in a hot and dry vintage.
2015 Bourgogne Chardonnay
Half each from the communes of Meursault and Puligny – a mid-September harvest.
Ooh, a big nose, floral and fresh. A richness pf texture, but also fresh and layered flavour – a great Bourgogne! Long finishing.
2015 Meursault Vieilles-Vignes
Some vines in Pellans here are from 1945.
A tighter base of aroma. Finer, more mineral, more mouth-watering. Beautiful wine, saline and beautiful. Bravo!
2015 Meursault Cuvée 45
Only 3-4 year old barrels used here.
A modest nose, mineral. Oof – more richness of texture but fully energetic, layered and beautiful. Great Meursault…a finish to die for – so über-long!
2015 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er En Remilly
From the upper section of the vineyard.
A bigger, more open nose. Intense, long fresh fruit, fine line. Super complexity in the finish. Bravo again!
2015 Meursault 1er Les Charmes
Deep, vibrant nose. Wide, fresh, mineral the antithesis of rich, just in the finish the width and complexity of some oak, but only there. Great wine!
2015 Meursault 1er Bouches-Chères
A deeper register, faints spice. Ooh – again! What a mineral width, fine bubbling energy, wide, wide, wide – oh, and long! Layers in the finish even minutes later.
2015 Meursault 1er Cras
A nose of apricot and freshness. Ooh, this has layers of melting flavour, more over intensity, more line and wow flavour! It’s hard, but this could be my new favourite!
2015 Chablis 1er Les Lys
Beautiful direct, perfumed aroma. Direct, but the intensity melts over the tongue with complexity. A little extra finishing width, perhaps caramel too. But long, long. Super stuff!
Made from Aloxe fruit in Charlemagne. Direct south-facing, close to the cross.
Wide not super-overt aromas, but interesting. Ooh this is intense, this could be Chablis mineral, almost metallic. Long. Less wide in the finish than many, but really special, and no less long. Bravo!
2015 Chablis Vaudesir
Pyrazine and menthol on the nose. Wide, silken, energetic, intense – ooh – bravo! Wide and long in the finish.
2015 Bourgogne Rouge
From two vines; one Meursault Coutures, and the other Puligny Champans – 50% whole cluster. ‘I like ‘supple’ but I won’t go down the route of making an easy-drinking wine that’s dead in 10 years – this includes the press wine too.’.
Ooh, wow, round supple fresh and complex. Big volume, layers of flavour. Fresh, and really tasty, big in the finish too – delicious and not a hint facile. Bravo Bourgogne!
2015 Volnay 1er Les Santenots
The fruit from 70 year-old vines. All whole cluster. All new oak
Narrower and more floral aromas when opened. Wide, plenty of fresh texture, a base, but not intrusive, of tannin. Oak in the finish – an open-ended finish…
Allen Meadows a sorti son nouveau numéro il y a quelques minutes. Merci à lui pour ces évaluations élogieuses de nos blancs 2014 Elles nous mettent du baume au coeur...
2014 Bourgogne-Aligoté Sous Le Chemin: A spicy and overtly citrus-inflected nose introduces delicious and solidly well- concentrated middle weight flavors that possess a lovely sense of energy along with good minerality on the lingering finish. This attractive and forward effort should drink well almost immediately. 86/2017+
2014 Bourgogne Hautes Coutures: (from Meursault fruit). There is an interesting hint of petrol on the otherwise fresh and pretty aromas of green apple and floral scents. There is a really lovely texture to the seductive, round and utterly delicious flavors that possess particularly good mid-palate concentration in the context of what this is, all wrapped in a saline-inflected finale that delivers very fine depth and length. An excellent Bourgogne worthy of your interest. 87/2018+
2014 Meursault Vieilles Vignes: Very mild reduction doesn’t completely mask the citrus, floral and white-fleshed fruit aromas. There is fine intensity to the well-detailed and impressively concentrated middle weight flavors that evidence plenty of stone influence on the attractively lingering and balanced finish where a hint of bitter lemon arises. This is a powerful, indeed even old school Meursault villages that is going to need at least a few years of bottle age. Recommended provided that you have the patience to wait. 89/2021+
2014 Chablis Les Lys: Here the restrained nose is cool, airy and elegant with ultra-pure aromas of lemon, iodine, sea breeze, oyster shell and the plenty of floral influence. The intensely mineral-driven and well-delineated flavors possess a lacy, even delicate mouth feel before terminating in a notably saline, dry and clean but not austere finale. This is textbook Les Lys that should drink well almost immediately yet reward a few years of cellar time too. Lovely stuff. 91/2019+
2014 Chablis Vaudésir: As one would reasonably expect this is somewhat riper than the Les Lys with its subtly exotic aromas of white peach, seaweed and tidal pool nuances. There is a good deal more size, power and concentration to the intense broad-shouldered flavors that possess first-rate complexity and terrific persistence on the balanced and sappy finale. This will be less forthcoming young but not so much so that it won’t be approachable until it peaks. 93/2021+
2014 Chassagne-Montrachet La Romanée: As is often the case with a fine La Romanée there is a touch of the exotic in evidence on the exceptionally fresh mix of white orchard fruit aromas that include white peach, apple and pear, all of which are trimmed in just enough wood to notice. The detailed, precise and tension-filled medium-bodied and generously proportioned flavors really vibrate plus the discreet minerality adds a bit of lift as well to the firm and notably dry finish. This is really quite good and in particular I like the overall sense of harmony. 92/2021+
2014 Chassagne-Montrachet Les Caillerets: A judicious application of wood does not detract from the attractiveness of the equally exotic aromas of orange peel, white peach and mineral reduction that display floral and spicy top notes. There is excellent concentration and intensity to the racy and overtly mineral-driven yet seductively textured medium weight plus flavors that culminate in a clean and explosive finish that is both dry and hugely long. This is really quite impressive plus the sappy dry extract should allow it to be approached on the younger side if desired. 93/2022+
2014 Meursault Tessons: (from vines planted in 1964 and aged in 20% new wood). In contrast to the prior wines that exhibited mild levels of reduction this is very firmly reduced so if you’re going to try a bottle young be sure to decant it first. Like the Caillerets there is excellent concentration and power to the beautifully detailed, indeed chiseled, flavors that possess a positively gorgeous texture on the superbly well-balanced finale. It’s rare to find villages level wines of this caliber and the ’14 Tessons is highly recommended. 91/2021+
2014 Meursault Les Cras: (from yields of only 14 hl/ha in 2014). A cool and appealingly fresh nose is comprised by notes of citrus, apple and a hint of pear along with nuances of hazelnut and grilled almonds. There is a lovely texture to the impressively intense and delineated medium weight flavors that are more evidently mineral-driven on the linear, focused and sneaky long finish. In contrast to some of the wines in the range this is going to require a few years of cellar time to further flesh out as it’s borderline lean today. 91/2022+
2014 Meursault Charmes du Dessus: Very mild reduction does not materially detract from the restrained nose of acacia blossom, citrus and white orchard fruit aromas that include pear and apple. There is excellent size, weight and mid-palate concentration to the highly energetic middle weight flavors that also terminate in a clean, dry and linear finish that is presently slightly austere. This is also clearly going to need a few years of cellaring to allow it to further flesh out but it should be magnificent in time. 93/2024+
2014 Meursault Bouches Chères: (note that the domaine uses the old spelling for Bouchères). An airy and exceptionally pretty array of floral, pear, apple and citrus nuances are framed by a deft application of wood. There is a wonderfully delicate mouth feel to the refined and beautifully textured medium weight flavors that exhibit a fine bead of minerality on the balanced and lingering finale that is ever-so-mildly austere at present. Textbook juice. 92/2022+
2014 Meursault Goutte d’Or: Like the La Romanée and Vaudésir this too manifests a hint of the exotic with its ripe nose of mostly white and yellow orchard fruits that offer tangerine peel and pekoe tea nuances. There is plenty of mouth coating dry extract that really fills out the mid-palate of the full-bodied flavors that possess both outstanding volume and ample power, all wrapped in a textured, balanced and lingering if mildly austere finish. The concentration is impressive and this powerful effort should amply reward extended keeping if desired. 93/2022+
2014 Puligny-Montrachet Les Caillerets: Here there are no such exotic aromas but rather those that are much more floral in character with cool citrus, tea, spice and wet stone nuances. Once again there is outstanding concentration and mid-palate density to the medium weight flavors as the abundant level of dry extract completely coats the mouth and buffers the firm acid spine shaping the intensely mineral-driven finish that delivers absolutely first-rate depth and length. This is at once concentrated yet classy and almost delicate in its delivery. Lovely. 93/2022+
2014 Corton-Charlemagne: (from Le Charlemagne). Once again there is a discreet hint of the exotic present on the otherwise fresh, cool and admirably pure floral, green fruit and wet stone scents. The palate impression though is entirely classic with restrained and intensely mineral-driven broad-shouldered and overtly muscular flavors that possess excellent volume and plenty of energy before really fanning out on the firm, balanced and ever-so-slightly austere finale. This appears to possess terrific development potential and it’s clearly going to require at least 5 to 6 years just to get rolling while amply reward 10 to 12. Patience. 93/2024+
Tasted in Meursault with Patrick Essa, 16 October, 2015.
Patrick on 2015:
“Really excellent. It was a super harvest and I hope with great wines to follow. For harvesting it’s not a question of acidity; the first people started 23rd August, others the 5th or 6th of September – such a gap is really rare. I think there should be great wines for the patient. Here we began harvesting our reds on the 5th, and our whites on 6th – we finished on the 13th. Despite even (in the end) 13.2° for our Bourgogne Rouge, I had very regular fermentations.”
Patrick on 2014:
“2014 is really a very good vintage; very concentrated too. The reds were picked in the last days of September and the whites into October. Only 22 hl/ha though, hence the concentration. A great year, and the whites are better than the reds. If 2013 is about finesse, then 2014 complex and dense. Reduction and agrume flavours are easy, I want white flowers, that takes care.”
Patrick on pricing 2014s:
Prices will probably go up by about 2-3%. You can’t actually sell for half the price of your neighbours, but I like to try to keep things real.
All the wines had already been fined today, so timing was not perfect, yet the wines were on great form….
2014 Bourgogne Aligoté
A small harvest with 12.5° natural and no rot. Was fermented in barrel and is now in tank.
2014 Bourgogne Chardonnay
From vines with the boundaries of Meursault.
Perfumed modestly high-toned. Big, round, a softness yet a nice energy too. Expands very finely in the mid-palate, followed by a lovely wide, tasty finishing flavour. Yum!
2014 Meursault Vieilles-Vignes
A weight and a very fine width of perfume here. Lithe, concentrated, very good minerality at the base, and with super texture – really excellent!
2014 Meursault Tessons
Fresh if a little closed. Finer acidity more direct shape and delivery of flavour – gorgeous fruit intensity borne on great acidity in the mid-palate – gorgeous. The finish is more subtle than the vieilles vignes but a great wine also.
2014 Chablis 1er Les Lys
No new oak, 14 months elevage, to be bottled in December. These grapes came from very old vines – for Chablis – 60…
Very fine, citrus and rock nose. Wide, a hint of gas, mouth-wrapping texture. The acid- borne minerality comes through halfway through the mp. Super!
2014 Chablis Vaudesir
More weight of concentrated but still fresh aroma – white flowers. Much more mineral, almost shavings of rock here, intense yet padded, direct and long – excellent – and just beautiful in the finish.
2014 Chassagne-Montrachet 1er La Romanée
Both aromatic depth and height – really appealingly complex. Just one of the three barrels are new and there is some aroma from this for now, but it’s not excessive. Wide, mineral, ‘wow’ complexity not super concentrated, but doesn’t need to be. Really super wine.
2014 Puligny-Montrachet 1er Les Caillerets
Tighter aroma, yet wide. Pretty yet also modest. Fuller yet wider, fresh and complex – again. Mouth-watering in the finish. This should be special.
2014 Meursault 1er Les Charmes
Here and Pellans wasn’t hailed, so a normal yield. Have finally bought the metayage parcel that they exploited for a number of years.
A silky, wide wall of aroma, yet fresh, not oppressive, almost a clean freshness. Really not so round, rather mineral and beautifully textured, gorgeously minerally complex. Beautifully finishing.
Made from Aloxe fruit in Charlemagne. Direct south-facing, close to the cross.
A ripe core of fruit, a growing freshness above too. Very clean aromas – like a 2010. Volume in the mouth, indeed muscle, but beautifully, packaged texture. The finishing flavours are of mineral and faint sweetness. Here with a later reprise of flavour. Yum!
2014 Bourgogne Rouge
From two vines; one Meursault Coutures, and the other Puligny Champans 20% new oak..
Bright open pinot fruit, also of depth. Fresh but with complex energy. Dark but floral fruit here, lovely width. Excellent!
2014 Volnay 1er Les Santenots
The fruit from 70 year-old vines. 30% whole cluster here.
Way more depth and a little more weight. Fresh and intense – no space here for richness or extraneous texture, just a lovely deep flavour that expands and expands. This will be super.
And just to see ourselves into the weekend:
2013 Bourgogne Chardonnay
20% new oak.
Some width, a little more weight. Excellent texture, silky, almost rich but with a supporting acidity that is pretty perfect. Very tasty.
2013 Meursault Vieilles-Vignes
Beautiful, complex not so overt but fine Meursault. Liquid concentrate of Meursault, super finishing, really a modest wine but with finely balanced complexity. Yum!
2013 Meursault 1er Bouches Chères
A little aromatic weight here, yet essentially still a wine of some discretion. Here, a more direct mineral flavour, that’s first linear, then explodes with mouth-mouth-watering acidity.
2012 Chablis Vaudesir
18 month elevage in old wood.
Deep, complex, finely focused. Wide, transparent, wonderfully intense, lovely, fine finishing with a hint of mouth-watering sweetness.
2008 Meursault Tessons
There’s a suggestion of something deep but it’s never in full view. This is a modestly fresh almost minted nose. Silky, lithe, mineral – very mineral – opens wide with fine mouth-watering filigree flavour. I’d say still something of a baby. Excellent and a treat!
Patrick Essa recalls the season: “We have just 23hl/ha as we had hail in all plots. The wines have great concentration and for the vines which suffered hail, the fermentation was very slow taking place over 8 months with the MLF and maybe 10 for some premier cru.” “The pneumatic press worked well with the small grapes. We work slowly at not above 1.8 bar. Not much juice. Many flavins on the skin of the white and for this reason lots of texture, like tannins.” “In 2014 I worked with the lees; after debourbage we have just the fine lees and the juice is quite clean…it settles for 24 to 48 hours. I like to take my time. It was essential for me to observe the quality of the lees.
I work with 3 parts when I put into the barrels…all have a third first etc, so each barrel has the same lees. I want no reduction in any barrel.” I think the selection in the vineyards is essential for the expression of these wines. When we have no botrytis and the level of sugar at 13 degrees with great concentration it was possible to make wine with high quality. This is in the pursuit of a wine which is very pure and clean. No pumping only moving by gravity.” No pesticides in the vineyards for 20 years and no chemical treatments since 1996.
The samples are a blend of all casks with 20% of new oak for all wines and no new oak for the two barrels of Corton-Charlemagne. “I like real minerality, not reduction, mineral like iodine in the mid palate and salt on the end.” “You must take you time with this wine. Drink your 2011 or your 2007 first.” “It is a mix of the concentration of 2010, but without the botrytis.
2014 is a unique vintage for me. The hail and the quality of the harvest and the harvest..perhaps 1966 and 1955, but more like 1966.” Patrick’s wines have incredible level of concentration in this vintage. They are rich. It is not really typical of the vintage, which is ripe, but not this level of ‘super’ concentration. He clearly had very low yields. The thick skins give a kind of tannin; the wines have a lot of texture which emphasises the richness, and the minerality in his terroir gives the balance and freshness to the end of the palate. These are wines which will need quite some time in bottle.
*Meursault, Vieilles Vignes 6 different vineyards for a ‘round cuvée’ from the village. This is rounded; rich and incredibly concentrated. Full and succulent with a firm line of minerality coming under this enormously concentrated fruit supporting the palate to the finish. From 2019
*Meursault, Les Tessons 1/3 of a hectare in the southern part of the vineyards, “rockier soil with red soil,” says Patrick, The vines are 50 years old. 23 hl/ha and uses only used barrels from Burgundy forest, oak seasoned for 4 years and coopered in Hermitage. Elegant wine. Wonderfully supple and satin rich, very textured; the fruit is white peach and white flowers. The minerality here is smooth stone. It flows onto the finish. Once again this has a high level of concentration, combined here excellent typicity. Score 17. From 2019
Meursault, Les Cras “¼ hectare in front of their Volnay Santenots. Lots of small white stone and a sunny exposure. 6-8 barrels, just one this year. This is tight and stony on the palate; you sense the cold soil. A savoury mineral and tannic bite to the palate; a grip and a tension. The rich texture is all wine and lees, no new oak; two year old oaks. It is both warm and rich and cold. Sappy, minerals on the finish. Score 18. From 2020
Chassagne-Montrachet, La Romanée (negoce) High toned aroma..white flowers. On the palate this is very pure. It is lifted and high toned and very elegant. The upper part is fresher and a percentage of clay in the middle part so you get the richness and the acidity. Lovely long and mineral finish. Score 18. From 2019
*Meursault, Charmes Upper part, just under Perrières. Twenty year old vineyards..these are his vines now as he purchased this year. It is concentrated, but not so much as the first two wine, or the next two. This glides onto the palate. It is not so extravagant. it is more understated. There is a silky refinement. There is saltiness under the palate and on the finish. Score 18.35. From 2014
“This is the expression I love for my wines. You smell the spring water. Not so exuberant, but perfect.”
Meursault, Les Bouches-Chères Here the vines are 72 years old. This is spicy and perfumed. At first the palate is delicate, with light spice, but it grows full and rich, concentrated and rounded. It is rich and full; it is not picked first, but last and at 13.4. It has plenty aromatics on the finish. 2 of the 10 barrels. 14 hl/ha. “I didn’t think we would make any this year.
“If Boucheres is a gymnast Gouttes d’Or is a rugby player.”
*Meursault, La Goutte d’Or This is coiled and concentrated on the aroma. Rich strike. Dense and tight and compact. Tiny production. This has muscle and tannin and tension. This is rich and there is acidity coming through. Bunched and with amazing concentration here. Good typicite for this should be a rich and burly wine. Score 18.45. From 2020
Corton-Charlemagne Le Charlemagne. 82 year old vineyards (Negoce) This is pure and tight and straight and channelled. It is a sunny exposure…and has a sweetness to the fruit. It was harvested before the Meursault. This is high toned and very pure, very elegant and it has firm minerality and excellent tension. Lovely long finish. Score 19.25. From 2022/25
l’Outsider de Meursault
Les blancs 2011 sont superbes. Les 2012 en bouteilles mieux encore : belle corpulence, belle qualité de texture, arômes enchanteurs. Néanmoins Patrick Essa, le vinificateur, affectionne ses 2013 naissants, bien que ce millésime de Bourgogne blanc soit moins réputé que 2012.
Ce fut une belle soirée, riche en émotion, explications et différences entre la culture bourguignonne et bordelaise. Ma chronique du 17 décembre 2012, consacrait le Domaine Buisson Charles comme un Outsider. Il vient le démontrer une fois encore !
Aligoté 2012 15,5 // 88
Le 2010 était une découverte. Le 2012 mieux noté encore confirme. A 8 euros la bouteille, je ne connais pas un vin blanc au nez si fin et subtil. Bouche suave, raffinée qui chute en finale, mais c’est incrachable ! A boire avant 2018.
Bourgogne vieilles vignes 2012 16,25 // 91
Outsider et coup de coeur
Quelle réussite ! Nez subtil de fruits blancs à peine citronné. Bouche ample, suave, au toucher gras, à l’équilibre dynamique, à la belle longueur finement citronnée. 12 euros la bouteille. A boire avant 2020.
Meursault village vieilles vignes 2012 16,5 // 92
Grand nez complexe et noble, de fruits, chèvrefeuille et vanille. Bouche soyeuse, très fraîche, à la fois grasse et un peu austère en finale, mais minutieuse dans sa construction. Sensation de classe. De garde. A boire avant 2023. 26 euros T.T.C.
Meursault village les Tessons 2012 16,75 // 93
3000 bouteilles d’un vin au nez intense, fin, à la bouche soyeuse, tendre, éclatante en milieu de bouche, puis fondante et réglissée en finale. Un délice ! A boire avant 2025. 36 euros T.T.C.
Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru En Remilly 2011 16,5 // 92
Nez beaucoup plus expressif que l’an dernier. Nuances complexes de truffe, citron, ananas et réglisse. Bouche vive à l’attaque, très fruitée, parfumée au milieu et plus grasse en finale. Vin séveux et de garde. A boire avant 2025.
Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru La Romanée 2011 17 // 94
Nez fin, mais un peu plus compoté que ses pairs. Bouche particulièrement fruitée et fondante, au goût surprenant de violette. Sensation ascendante devenant éclatante en finale. Vin long et subtil. 2015 2025.
Meursault village Les Tessons 2011 17 // 94
Coup de coeur
La note a monté depuis l’an dernier. Superbe nez complexe, intense, fin, noble et subtil, à la touche de framboise, d’anis et d’orange. En bouche il est le premier à présenter une texture aussi cristalline. C’est incrachable ! A boire avant 2023. 35 euros T.T.C.
Meursault 1er cru Les Charmes 2011 16,75 // 93
Ici le nez est plus épicé et discret. Bouche vive et pourtant grasse, parfumée tout le long, avec une note de citron dans la persistance. Longueur normale. A boire avant 2025. 40 euros T.T.C.
Meursault 1er cru La Goutte d’or 2011 17,5 // 95
Coup de coeur
Quel plaisir de retrouver ce vin tant aimé l’an dernier à ce niveau. Couleur claire. Grand nez dense, de fruits blancs, de violette, d’anis. En bouche le vin fond, parfume, caresse, avec la noblesse de toucher des plus grands. Son caractère est unique et mieux encore il reste incrachable. A boire avant 2030. 44 euros T.T.C.
Corton Charlemagne grand cru 2011 17,25 // 94
Couleur claire. Nez à la fois précis, profond et discret. Bouche grasse, structurée, profonde, savoureuse, qui s’achève puissante, un peu austère sur des notes réglissées quasi tanniques. 2016 2035. 65 euros T.T.C.
Volnay 1er cru Les Santenots 2011 16 // 90
Volnay 1er cru Les Santenots 2010 15,75 // 89
Deux nez subtils et parfumés, un peu plus truffé sur le 2010. Les deux bouches possèdent les mêmes qualités tactiles et aromatiques, mais je préfère la finale du 2011 qui est moins feuillue (registre végétal). Un vin de nez, au corps moyen, qui danse dans la bouche sous l’effet du parfum.
Le Domaine Buisson-Charles est l'outsider de Meursault! Jean-Marc Quarin
Domaine Buisson-Charles, Meursault
I met with Patrick Essa who makes the wine these days. Michel, his father-in-law, who ran the domaine for so many years clearly still plays an active part in the process. He moved though the cuverie as we tasted reporting on what was happening in the vineyard and offering his opinion of the wines.
“A singular vintage with some reminiscence of 2005 for the whites. Great concentration and acidity,” comments Patrick.
“It was not an easy vintage,” he continues. “We had a problem with hail and maladies - oidium and some problems with flowering. We produced a half harvest. But I prefer a half harvest with quality than too much of lesser quality.” They harvested here between the 23rd and the 29th September which was before rain for part of the production and then after the rain (on the 25th and 26th ) September for the rest. It was a small production just 25hl/ha because of the hail at the end of June.
The analysis: Good tartaric acid for all the wines 3-3.5 and at malic 2.5-3; so a good balance. pH between 3.15 and 3.22. Degrees of alcohol at 12.5 for Aligote and 13.5 for the cru. No sugar added or yeast and no enzymes. “It was a clean harvest.” Patrick and Michel harvested late and Patrick selected out the botrytis.
The wines were slow to ferment. 3 months for alcoholic and 3-5 months for the MLF. “Slow as we have high acidity…5.7 to 6 total TA in juice. I prefer slow fermentation but with no stopping.” After MLF 3.30 and 3.4…reds 3.55 “Good acidity but not hard. Reduction was not a problem this year. Good concentration.”
After pressing the juice usually has 24 hours of sedimentation, but in 2012 they waited 48 hours.In 2012 they used plenty of lees, fine lees. Patrick filters the big lees to get turbidity between 100-150 “which is a good level before the elevage, but fine lees only. I have to balance things as I want no reduction but I want lots of lees. After I pump my juice into the barrel and mix the lees.” In 2012 he used just a little bâtonage for two cuvée….to help the yeast. “I think bâtonage is better the second winter not the first when you have movement any way. After racking we use bâtonage for the autolysis of the yeast, but cuvee by cuvee. It is not systematic.”
“I compare 2012 with 2005.” He also compares them with 2010s. “It is possibly a great vintage although it is difficult to say now. Great concentration, purity and acidity and in some premier cru, it is the best vintage I have vinify. The problem is small production.”
“I conserve middle price with no augmentation in 2012 as clients are not responsible with the weather. I prefer to sell the wine at a good price as I want to make wines for drinking not speculation.”
Patrick would like to see at least 5 years ageing for this vintage. As for wines in the cellar, more time for 2005 and so drink 2007s and 2011s. He has refined a few things to make them his wine a little easier to drink young than Michel’s wine, which needed quite a while to come round.
Stony vineyard below the main road in Meursault with clay soils. 70 year old vines. For the firstyear since Patrick made this wine, it is in wood. “I had not much production and I had emptyoak, but it is in one to three year old barrels.” He has a new plot, which he has planted with16,000 vines per hectare…there are 5-6 bunches on this higher density planting. “If I have 1m between the rows the workers can still work easily.” Appealing light lemony aroma with a rounded palate which is juicy and has a refreshing note of lime. It is fresh and bright on the finish. A light and accessible Aligote. Pleasant.
In 2011 half was in barrel and half in stainless steel, while in 2012 all is in barrel with 20% new oak. “I like this wine. It is a democratic wine,” says Patrick, who is keen to have an affordable wine in the portfolio. “I have younger clients.” It is a nice example of Bourgogne. Fresh and appley. Nice and breezy with the trademark purity of this domaine. It finishes very well for Bourgogne and makes an excellent introduction to the range. From late 2013/14
Meursault, Vieilles Vignes
6 different vineyards. The idea is to have a ‘round cuvée’ from the village. Some of the vines are very old, for example the 100 year old vines in Les Pellans. He has one hectare here (which is on the boarder with Puligny) which he considers gives it a bit more Puligny-like expression. No new oak in the sample, but there will be some on the final wine. Perfumed citrusy aroma. Notes of lemon balm. This is blossomy, lightly rounded and elegant. Quite well defined and nicely intense. The end of the palate is keen and mineral. “I like to produce wine which is more discreet to begin with and then after a few years becomes more expressive,” Patrick remarks. Good++. Score 15.25. From late 2014/2015
*Chassagne-Montrachet, En Remilly
Quite reserved aroma and attack. Streamlined and elegant. A straight and pure palate. Goodenergy and crisp, tight edges. Lithe wine. Particularly good. Score 17. From 2015/16
*Meursault, Les Tessons
Two different plots 45 and 60 ears old. “We consider this wine a premier cru. Red soil with stony mix.”Lovely texture, sleek and spicy, but not rich. It glides on the palate. It is supple and silky textured. The salinity comes though on the finish. Nicely balanced acidity. A puff of savoury chalk at the end. Particularly good. Score 17. from 2016
Meursault, Les Cras
18 hl/ha. Just two barrels, usually 5. This is more assertive on the aroma. Smokey note. Full bodied and generous. It certainly has a rounded, full and broad palate with ripe lemon fruit. Somewhat more robust. There is savoury mineral bite on the finish. It does not have the elegance of the Tessons, but has a forthright honesty. Score 17. from 2016/17
Upper part, just under Perrières. Lightish and elegant. Quite racy. Pure and threaded with plenty of minerality. It’s a lighter Charmes, (a little light on substance maybe) and not as glossy, intense and textural as one might expect. Particularly good+. 17.25 From 2016
*Meursault, Les Gouttes d’Or
There is a richness and density to the aroma. This is powerful and full. Plenty of intensity. There is marked depth to the palate. Long and powerful on the finish for Gouttes d’Or. It is certainly very compact. Quite a level up. Fine. Score 18. From 2017
*Meursault, Les Bouchères
Spicy aroma with rather exotic floral notes. Very expressive and generous on the attack. It is golden, seductive and supple in the middle. The acidity is fresh and bright. What I like about it is the lively, lifted finish. No new oak. This is delicious. Fine. Score 18 From 2018
Patrick received this in juice. It comes from a friend in Chablis. Patrick was a teacher in Chablis and there seems to have been some sort of pact, that when he reached 50, his friend would release a barrel of this to mark the occasion. It was handed over after one day of sedimentation,and hence received in the barrel. Patrick will probably finish the elevage in steel and there is no new oak in this wine. Hand harvested. 12.5 degrees and no sugar. The friend has two parcels with some vines in the amphitheatre, while another part gives freshness.Intense and lifted aroma with white flowers. Ripe fruit at the front of the palate. (Worked with many lees in this.) There is certainly a richness while the acidity underpins the wine. It has breadth and elegance. The finish is fine and pure with florality and minerality on the finish. Fine+. Score 18.5. from 2018
The MLf has not finished for the red and nothing has sulphur.
“The whites are more technical to make, while the red it is more like cooking,” muses Patrick.
“You can interpret the vintage and be more sensual. The white is more difficult as you must have extreme precision.”
In 3 year old barrels. 22 hl/ha in 2 plots including Les Magny. 45-60 year old vines. He treats it like a village wine and selects the grapes in the vineyard. 30% whole grapes are used. “With whole cluster you have more sweetness.” Sweet, dark and concentrated; juicy and ripe. Soft tannins with a touch of liquorish and bite of dark chocolate and black cherry on the finish. What a good Bourgogne.
28 ares. On the slope with north east exposure. “Good soil, but a fresh climate, so we harvest it late after everything else. No whole cluster. It’s not a massale selection. It’s clone 114 and 115. We have little grapes, but the vines are 30 years old now.” He has clearly worked hard to get 6-8 bunches per vine (23 hl/ha in 2012) and remarks that any more production and the wine will taste more like an Hautes-Cotes de Beaue. He achieved 12.3 degrees and no added sugar. Fresh red nose with floral notes and a hint of violets. (He does not like any toast in the barrel).Appealing silky texture; it is charming for a Pommard and flows elegantly across the palate. It is pure and has plenty of ripe cherry characters. Good+. Score 15.75. From 2015
Only two barrels. 34 ares. 17 hl/ha. 60 year old vines. Massale selection. Floral aromas. Dark fruit with a straight line. It is not quite as seductive and intense as it might be and there is a slightly hard note at the moment, as well as the more attractive hint of asphalt. I’d like to try it again.
Savigny, premier cru
This is from the Hospice de Beaune “Cuvèe Arthur Girard.” Quite a ripe aroma. Very sweet with lots of concentration and soft, ripe tannins. It is certainly a crowd pleaser. As Patrick did not make this, it is not in the same style as the domaine wines, but is an expressive and generous and accessible wine. Particularly good. Score 17. From 2016
Meursault, Les Tessons
One parcel of Tessons in two different plantings. 35 ares. In the southern part of Tessons with red soils. “The elegance of Chevalières and the power of Goutte d’Or,” remarks Patrick. It was purchased in 1976 by Michel. The climat of Tessons totals 5 hectares and all 7 growers have vineyards exposed East. In the Southern part there is less influence from the wind. Patrick thinks there is more tension in the North, more of Chevalières character, while the Southern part produces more summery and fruity wine. But of course the date of harvest will affect this.
Meursault, Les Tessons 2011
Fragrant, breezy and discreet. There is a fresh water feel to the aroma. Juicy and citrus. It is delicate and refined on the palate. Lovely balance of acidity and fruit. Slight salinity on the finish. Long finish. 17.5. It is lovely now, quite accessible, but equally you could and perhaps should wait another 2 or 3 years.
*Meursault, Les Tessons 2010
This is richer on the aroma than the 2011. Riper, crystallized lemon fruit. Quite unctuous on the attack. Energetic, but with more richness to the fruit; more density. It powers home on the finish. It is certainly ripe and energetic and very expressive. No lack of acidity here either. I do like this. It is precise. 17.8. From 2017
Meursault, Les Tessons 2009
Riper still. Touch of nutty aroma coming though. I thought it might be a bit heavy in comparison, but its not. It’s ripe but elegant. While it is marked by the sunny vintage character, but the balance of acidity keeps it fresh. 17.7. Keep for another 3 or 4 years.
*Meursault, Les Tessons 2008
Patrick made this together with Michel. A long 22 months of elevage. This is showing some evolution in flavour, but really it needs time still. There is an intense, crystallized lemon character. He did not de-select the botrytis. Unctuous, powerful, straight and dense. Lots of acidity and intense fruit combine. Very straight. concentrated, but still really quite severe. Shows great potential for ageing further. Score 17.8
Meursault, Les Tessons 2007
Salty and breezy, more akin to the 2011. More ozone character. Light and elegant and pure. This races elegantly across the palate to a saline finish. Lovely. So pretty and drinking so well now. I do not see any benefit in keeping this. Score 17.25
Meursault, Les Tessons 2006
Ripe and toffee note. It is both fatter and flatter. On the upside it has generosity and nuttybiscuit characters. Honeyed and full. Drink now; slightly oxidative. So it is ready now. Score 16
Meursault, Les Tessons 2005
Wonderful aroma. It is Patrick’s favourite vintage since ’89. The palate is impressive, full and rich and biscuity. This is powerful on the finish. While it is clearly a very good wine, I prefer a little more restraint. It is positive baroque on the finish, but still very fresh and it certainly has plenty of energy. So 17.4 this needs more time maybe.
Meursault, Les Tessons 2001
This was harvested in October on the 2nd October. Patrick vinified this alone as his father-in-law was unwell. No new oak. Only barrels from 3, 4 and 5 years. 8 barrels so a good production. He finds the same expression as 2008 and here too there was a long, long fermentation and some reduction in barrel. The 2001 might have same acidity, as 2008 thinks Patrick… This has plenty of age now. Rich and biscuit, but uplifted. Delicious complexity with notes of coffee and grilled nuts Nicely defined acidity. Very fresh and bright with a pure note on the end of the palate. Score 17.45. Drink now.
Meursault, Les Tessons 2000
Smooth texture onto the palate; very rounded and generous, glossy and full. It’s a contented wine. Sunny and yet fresh on the finish. Patrick says it has always been like this. It will probably continue like this for 20 years. Score 17.5. Drink now but will probably continue like this for a while.
UK: Richards Walford. Robertson; Flint
USA: Scott Paul. Vintner Select.
Le Guide Vert 2014 de la revue des vins de France est sorti aujourd'hui - 14 Aout - avec les évaluations de nos 2011.
Les notes sont toujours subjectives mais comme nous sommes dans un millésime que la revue trouve "moyen" dans l'ensemble de la région, elles représentent de beaux succès.
Assez surpris des appréciations sur le Bourgogne Chardonnay car c'est analytiquement le plus acide de nos vins! Pour le Remilly, deux fûts de un et trois ans ayant eu des Goutte d'Or avant...le moins boisé de mes crus donc!
Mais l'ensemble de l'analyse reste cohérent - même si Bouches-Chères est supérieur à Goutte d'Or cette année - et je suis particulièrement heureux de la note de dégustation de l'Aligoté car c'est la première cuvée vinifiée partiellement sous bois de trois à cinq ans.
J'aurais dû mettre le Charlemagne car c'est un délice en ce moment-))
Allen Meadows’ 3rd Quarter, 2013 Issue 51
B U R G H O U N D . C O M® The Ultimate Burgundy Reference
This 5.5 ha domaine, of which 25% of its production is in red, is directed by 4th generation Michel Buisson, his daughter Catherine and son-in-law Patrick Essa. Essa told me that it was “already clear by the month of May that the harvest was going to be an exceptionally early one. What was perhaps just as remarkable however was that we also knew quite early on that we would have a high degree of phenolic ripeness accompanied by relatively low potential alcohols. This is unusual, not only because we could predict it early on rather than only a few days before the harvest but also that we had this conjunction of high phenolic ripeness levels with low alcohols. This just doesn’t happen all that often. The chardonnay started to turn golden around the 15th of August and the best parcels had potential alcohols in the 10.5 to 11% range. Then we had a lot of rainfall between the 18th and 20th which caused the fruit to swell and diluted the potential alcohols. It took the vines a week to 10 days to concentrate the sugars and we began picking on the 31st of August bringing in relatively clean fruit that required a bit of sorting but nothing really serious. Potential alcohols averaged between 12 and 12.5%. From the standpoint of the handling of the fruit and the fermentations, the whites required great care and precision. You had to press softly and slowly as well as do a thorough lees settling. In the case of the former, you didn’t want to extract anything that wasn’t ripe and/or pure. And in the case of the latter, you wanted to again be absolutely certain that you didn’t have anything in your musts that shouldn’t be there. Then it was necessary to add sulfur only at the precise times and in the minimum amounts necessary. The good news is that if you did these things it was possible to make excellent wines that are going to surprise many people. I don’t mean to say that 2011 produced truly great wines but they are much better than simply good.” Essa also noted that the domaine has moved to stamping its corks with all of the relevant information. I have noted this before but the quality coming out of this domaine in recent years is nothing short of spectacular and if you enjoy classically styled age-worthy whites then these will definitely appeal to you. The whites were bottled without fining or filtration in December, 2012 and January 2013. Note that the two Chassagne 1ers are négociant wines. I would agree with Essa’s general take on the vintage and the domaine in my view clearly outperformed the general quality of the vintage. (Vintner Select, www.vintnerselect.com, Cincinnati, OH, Milton Road Trading Corp, LLC, www.miltonroadtrading.com, Napa CA, Scott Paul Wines, www.scottpaul.com, Portland, OR; Richards Walford, www.r-w.co.uk, HS Liquid Assets, www.hsliquid.com and Roberson Wine, www.roberson.co.uk, all UK).
2011 Bourgogne-Aligoté: An exuberantly spicy nose of very fresh citrus and orchard fruit scents leads to energetic and noticeably saline-infused flavors that culminate in a clean, very dry and crisp finish. This is a fine example of the genre and one that should drink well almost immediately. 86/2014+
2011 Bourgogne: There is a very mild hint of the exotic to the otherwise fresh and cool floral and citrus aromas. There is good concentration and fine volume to the delicious, round and vibrant middle weight flavors that possess notably better depth and length than the average example. Lovely and recommended plus this will age if desired. 87/2015+
2011 Meursault Vieilles Vignes: A ripe but cool nose features notes of pear, white peach, citrus and hazelnut. There is good cut and vibrancy to the delicious and solidly well-concentrated middle weight flavors that terminate in a very crisp, dry, detailed and lingering finish. The old vines are very much in evidence and this is one to definitely consider. 89/2017+
2011 Chassagne-Montrachet “En Remilly”: A completely different aromatic profile is present here with hints of resin, citrus peel, exotic tea and floral scents. There is a fine sense of underlying tension to the delicious, intense and well-detailed flavors that really fan out on the mouth coating, balanced and attractively mineral-inflected finish. 90/2016+
2011 Chassagne-Montrachet “La Romanée”: There is a discreet but still visible touch of wood influence to the ripe, spicy and exotic nose that displays fine complexity on the dried yellow fruit scents. There is fine mid-palate concentration to the round, supple and opulent medium-bodied flavors that deliver equally fine depth on the balanced and persistent finish. This is really quite stylish. 92/2017+
2011 Meursault “Tessons”: (from vines planted in 1964 and aged in 20% new wood). A hint of mineral reduction adds breadth to the fresh, ripe and cool aromas of just sliced orchard fruit and hazelnut. There is really lovely purity to the saline- infused medium weight flavors that exude a fine minerality on the precise, harmonious and impeccably well-balanced finish. This is a terrific villages and recommended. 90/2017+
2011 Meursault “Les Cras”: This is slightly riper than the Tessons yet the nose remains cool and fresh with well-layered aromas of apple, pear and white flowers. There is excellent volume to the solidly concentrated and mineral-inflected medium weight flavors that possess fine energy on the ever-so-mildly austere and persistent finish. There is a firm acid spine and this should reward 6 to 8 years of cellar time. 91/2017+
2011 Meursault “Charmes”: This is one of the more interesting wines in the range with its nose of mandarin orange, pickled ginger and exotic yellow fruit aromas. Here too there is fine volume and mid-palate density to the middle weight flavors that coat the mouth before culminating in a delicious, clean, dry and saline-infused finish. The dry and crisp finish is in marked contrast to the naturally sweet mid-palate. While not exactly classic in style, this is lovely all the same. 92/2018+
2011 Meursault “Bouches-Chères”: (note that the domaine uses the old spelling for Bouchères). A strikingly elegant, pure and restrained nose displays essence of citrus, stone and green apple aromas. There is superb detail to the intense and broad-shouldered flavors that coat the palate with dry extract, all wrapped in a delicious yet serious lemon-infused finish. This highly understated and impeccably well-balanced effort is both stylish and classy. 93/2018+
2011 Meursault “Goutte d’Or”: There is enough reduction present to knock down the nose but it clearly appears to be ripe. There is more volume and power to the medium weight plus flavors that enjoy impressive mid-palate concentration as well as plenty of palate coating extract. The lingering and balanced finish is quite firm as the supporting acidity and subtle minerality shape the backend yet the mouth feel is distinctly different from that of the Bouches-Chères. A qualitative choice but both are terrific in their own ways. 93/2018+
2011 Corton-Charlemagne: (from Aloxe). A deft application of wood sets off cool, admirably pure and restrained aromas of green apple, white peach and mineral reduction. There is excellent richness to the overtly powerful and muscular flavors that are concentrated to the point of being unctuous yet the firm supporting acidity maintains a fine sense of balance on the palate staining finish. I very much like the depth and this could surprise to the upside. 93/2019+
I have noted this before but the quality coming out of this domaine in recent years is nothing short of spectacular and if you enjoy classically styled age-worthy whites then these will definitely appeal to you. I would agree with Essa’s general take on the vintage and the domaine in my view clearly outperformed the general quality of the vintage.