|Alan’s September Vintages Release Tasting Notes|
Release date September 3rd, 2005
to my travels this summer, I missed tasting the last couple of releases.
However, I am back, and as luck would have it, this past Saturday,
Vintages let loose the first wave of 02 Burgundies. Way back in the last
millennium, Vintages had a one – time substantial release of the 1990
Burgundies. These wines received as much hype and pre – release
publicity as the 02’s are. I remember those Burgundies having more depth
and intensity to their colour, and structurally, the wines seemed
tighter and had more concentration on the palate. The 02’s are tasty
wines indeed, but they seem to be fashioned in a different, more elegant
style. Be prepared to fork out lots of cash if you want to stash any
away. They are certainly not cheap. Vintages is now going to publish and
mail two brochures each month instead of having both scheduled releases
printed together in one.
653634 CHARLES HEIDSIECK BRUT RESERVE CHAMPAGNE $49.95
338459 CLOUDY BAY ‘PELORUS' 2000 $37.95, Marlborough, South Island,
942417 CLOUDY BAY ‘PELORUS' $30.95, Marlborough, South Island, NZ
945741 CHARTRON & TRÉBUCHET PULIGNY-MONTRACHET 2002 $57.95
A wine bearing pristine aromas of pure Chardonnay fruit, peach skin, banana peel and apple. It’s not big by any standard. However, the palate is clean, has balanced fruit flavours and the finish is elegant.
945642 CHARTRON-TRÉBUCHET CHASSAGNE-MONTRACHET, LES BENOÎTES 2002 $59.95
I love my first sip of this wine, but the question I ponder is “why does it taste so mature at this youthful stage of its life”? The colour is denser than the Puligny Montrachet. Aromas of mandarin, fig, roasted chestnut and baked pear torte are pleasing. The palate is full, yet it is showing signs of the nutty characteristic that older Burgundies take on. Has to be a problem here with the bottle. It is not madeirazed, but there is something not quite right. Too bad cause it’s tasty.
938365 DOMAINE VINCENT GIRARDIN MEURSAULT LES NARVAUX 2002 $52.95
Clearly this is my favourite of the three. It has the balance of earthiness, mineral and fruit extraction that makes it a winner. The nose is like a creamy hazelnut toffee bar. The palate is smooth, fruit laden and the apple acidity keeps it bright. Lovely stuff.
979252 ALAIN HUDELOT-NOËLLAT CHAMBOLLE-MUSIGNY 2002 $57.95
This bears a nice dark robe; the nose is ripe, full of enticing red fruit. Nice concentration and balance on the palate. A decent, but not outstanding finish.
585927 ANTONIN GUYON GEVREY-CHAMBERTIN 2002 $54.95
A tight nose that gives nothing away. The palate shows some fruit, blueberry and raspberry. The acids are more pronounced and the tannins are silky. This needs time.
713693 DOMAINE A.-F. GROS BOURGOGNE HAUTES CÔTES DE NUITS 2002 $29.95
This is showing quite well at the moment, and being a generic Burgundy, it should. It has light ruby colour, nice strawberry, roasted beet, sweet cherry and mushroom aromas. The finish is red fruit and anise. Tasty little wine.
700906 DOMAINE ANTONIN GUYON CHAMBOLLE-MUSIGNY ‘CLOS DU VILLAGE' 2002 $57.95
Funky best describes this style of Pinot. It features aromas of pinecone, forest floor, morels and straw, with a blast of plum and red cherry. It is quite creamy on the palate, showing nice toasty vanilla, plum, red fruit and spice flavours. Very well balanced.
938456 DOMAINE DANIEL RION VOSNE-ROMANÉE ‘VILLAGE' 2002 $59.95
Sitting in the glass, this wine displays a deeper purple garnet colour. Its aroma is headier than most of the wines, showing a dense layer of blackberry, black cherry, violet and Moroccan spice. The balance is splendid and the finish is pure clean fruit.
There is also support from a cloak of tannin to warrant a few years of rest.
592709 DOMAINE HUMBERT FRÈRES GEVREY-CHAMBERTIN 2002 $59.95
Yet another wine featuring a nice dark ruby garnet cloak. The nose is spicy and has a touch of wet animal fur (a good thing in this case), dark cherry and leather. It’s medium bodied, full of red fruit, good acidity and a nice finish.
652420 DOMAINE PARENT POMMARD ‘LES CHAPONNIÈRES' 2002 $69.95
The colour here leans towards a ruby/purple hue. The ripe meaty rustic nose is full of mineral, iron, leather and dark fruit. It is a more rustic styled wine that will need some time. The concentration of fruit on the palate is stellar. Very good stuff.
680850 DOMAINE PAVELOT SAVIGNY-LÈS-BEAUNE‘LA DOMINODE' 2002 $47.95
I think this is another wine that needs time. Right now the fruit is showing, but it is so tightly wound in with its tannin, it has a backward texture. It is really tough to evaluate at this stage, but gut feel tells me this might be one of the better deals to be had.
653022 DOMAINE ROBERT ARNOUX NUITS-ST-GEORGES 2002 $59.95
Right from the get go, I find a pretty mix of geranium, lavender, currant, plum, blackberry, blueberry and spice on the nose. It too shows tannin, good acidity and a surprising sweetness on the finish.
586800 DOMAINE TAUPENOT-MERME MOREY-SAINT-DENIS 2002 $59.95
Back again to the earthy mushroom compote and dark fruit style of wine. Its palate is tight, the tannins are very chocolaty and the blackberry fruit is sweet. The finish is not what I hoped; the fruit struggles to be noticed.
587055 DOMAINE TOLLOT-BEAUT SAVIGNY-LAVIÈRES 2002 $44.95
Judging from the purple mauve colour this wine upholds, I expect a lighter style of Pinot. It is light, but it still has good structure and some pretty cherry and blackberry fruit. The nose shows off a little cedar along with anise and dried mint. The finish is fine, but nothing more.
940551 FAIVELEY MERCUREY‘LA FRAMBOISIÈRE' 2002 $29.95
Out of all the Burgundies, this has some good QPR going for it. It is by no means the best, but for the money, it is more than just tasty. It’s aroma of cherry pie, and creamy oak renders it tempting to open now, but the solid fruit finish has ample tannins to allow it to go for a while.
586867 FERNAND & LAURENT PILLOT POMMARD, ‘CLOS DE VERGER’ 2002 $69.95
A light ruby colour in the glass, with lots of sweet fruit red fruit and sweet spice on the palate. The finish delivers a note of mocha, red currant and sweet silky chocolate. Elegant!
586842 FRÉDÉRIC MAGNIEN VOSNE-ROMANÉE, ‘AU-DESSUS DE LA RIVIÈRE' 2002 $59.95
A striking dark ruby/violet colour with rich viscosity. The nose gives out aromas of tea, blackcurrant, blueberry and clove. The mid-palate is well balanced and nicely structured. The finish shows fine acidity, a silky texture and lots of tasty dark fruit.
993063 JOSEPH DROUHIN GEVREY-CHAMBERTIN 2002 $48.95
Here is more of that purple mauve colour with a sweet nose of lavender, delicate red fruit and a trace of mineral. The palate is light and silky, there is fruit, but it is subtle. I expected more.
999672 LOUIS LATOUR BEAUNE ‘VIGNES FRANCHES' 2002 $56.95
There are some unusual, but interesting, notes of Thai basil and spearmint, combined with red currant jam, licorice, mocha and star anise. The mouth feel is rich, silky and packed with a solid core of fruit. It is built to last, but by no means is it unpleasant right now.