Gilles and Jean Lafouge. Photo Brooklynwineguy.

Great Values from the Côte d'Or: Prudhon, Lafouge (on Sale!), Rateau & Jane et Sylvain!

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It gives us great pleasure to offer (and drink) great quality Burgundies at reasonable prices. We're very happy to be working with a number of superb producers who remain relatively unknown, either by their aversion to self-promotion or their absence from the various point-scoring publications, and whose prices remain reasonable given the oustanding quality of the wines. The growers featured today represent great value to the educated consumer both for cellaring and immediate enjoyment. (All wines discount 10% on case purchases, including Lafouge. Arrival by 10/08/14)

2010s from Domaine Henri Prudhon; The 2010 whites offered here will sell-out quickly so don't delay, and the lovely light-bodied, earthy reds from Prudhon are sensational values in this excellent vintage.

2011s from Domaine Lafouge On-Sale! Our order of 2012s is now shipping so our remaining 2011s are being offered at a deep discount. These are beautiful wines as Jean and Gilles Lafouge did particularly well in 2011. Although delicious now, the premier crus will certainly benefit from five to ten years in the cellar.

We are proud to be working with the distinctive wines of Jean-Claude Rateau! One of the first growers in France to practice biodynamic agriculture, Jean-Claude's techniques in the cellar also enable the production of real wines of terroir. Fermentations are solely with wild-yeasts and stems are included in proportion depending on the vintage. There are manual cap-punchings, but no attempt to over-extract. Aging is uniquely in used barrels, three to ten years old, and minimal SO2 is used. We have just recieved a small additional shipment - note especially the 2010 Beaune Bressandes as only 36 bottles are available.

Jane et Sylvain No Mercedes in the drive, no grand Chateau, no fancy tasting room, just two lovely hard-working people who farm organically and make delicious wines. They have a great parcel in Gevrey "Fontenys," a lovely Cote de Nuits vineyard next to Fixin "Queue de Hareng" and they make wonderful Bourgogne rouge and Passetougrain. These are old-fashioned Burgundies of terroir that we urge you to try.

No Longer Available
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  • $49.99

Prudhon 2010 Chassagne-Montrachet Rouge "Les Chambres"

Bright red/garnet color. Subtle raspberry and tart black-cherry aromas with violet and stone. Tart, earthy cherry and red-currant fruit on the palate with firm stony acidity and saline minerals in the finish. This needs decanting or five years in the cellar — a potentially lovely old-fashioned Burgundy that is a bit austere, more mineral than fruit, for current drinking.

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Lafouge 2011 Auxey-Duresses Rouge

The Lafouge "Village" red is really delicious in 2011, a bit rounder and softer than the 2010, showing classic cherry and violet aromas with chalky red and black fruits on the palate. The fruit is deep and earthy with good framing acids—really yummy! Drink now and over the next 5 to 8 years.

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  • $23.99

Lafouge 2011 Auxey-Duresses 1er Cru La Chapelle

La Chapelle is a "climat" within Les Breterins and Reugne, on the steep slope of la Montagne de Bourdon, facing south/southeast. The vines are well-placed in mid-slope and are mostly sixty years-old, giving the most "generous" of the three Lafouge premier crus. The 2011 is a great success with pretty ripe strawberry and cherry fruit aromas. The palate is round and balanced with lovely red fruits, earth and spice. Drink this gorgeous wine over the next six to ten years as you wait for the 2010s to mature...

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Lafouge 2011 Auxey-Duresses 1er Cru Les Duresses

The Lafouge vines in Les Duresses are high on the slope in thin soil giving a firm, well-structured wine that is particularly good in 2011. The fruit is dark and pretty—black fruits predominate and the palate shows more earth and mineral flavors than La Chapelle. Lovely black fruits with smoke and saline minerals and terrific length—this is a complex and well-built glass of Burgundy at a great price. Decant if drinking now or cellar 3 to 5 years, should keep well till 2025.

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Lafouge 2011 Pommard 1er Cru Les Chanlins

As we didn't taste the 2011 Chanlins last Spring, we offer this review from John Gilman in "The View from the Cellar" (watch out for the gamebirds) "The 2011 Pommard “les Chanlins” from Domaine Gilles Lafouge is absolutely superb in this vintage and will give the outstanding 2010 version a run for its money over the next few decades. The reserved and very classy nose offers up a complex blend of red and black cherries, woodsmoke, coffee, a superb base of soil, gamebirds, a touch of nutskin and a lovely base of cedar from its thirty percent new oak this year. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and rock solid at the core, with ripe tannins, lovely focus and balance, and great soil drive on the long, tangy and very refined finish. Chanlins is one of the most elegant premier crus in all of Pommard, and in the hands of Gilles Lafouge, it makes one of the best premier crus in the entire village!"

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  • $43.99

Rateau 2012 Beaune Les Beaux et Bons

The first vigneron in Burgundy to convert to biodynamics in 1979, Jean-Claude Rateau fashions wines of great purity and precision. Working with no new oak and minimal sulfur, his reds are at once floral, savory, and mineral.

Les Beaux et Bons, sourced from lieux-dits Beaux and Bons on the Pommard side of Beaune, has dark red fruits, underbrush, and an earthy spiciness on the nose. This follows through on an intensely mineral palate with fresh acidity and savory red fruits. With time in a decanter more floral notes appear and the palate expands in weight and complexity. Beautifully balanced.

Decant now or hold for 3-5 years and enjoy over the next 10. JCM

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  • Biodynamic

Rateau 2012 Beaune Clos des Mariages

The parcel is a mix of young and very old vines situated below Beaune Grèves in fertile clay and limestone soils. The 2012 has very pretty bright raspberry and tart cherry aromas with hints of spice (nutmeg, juniper). The light, pretty palate shows chalky tart cherry fruit - quite intense and mineral with bracing acidity and good length. This will be refreshing and delicious with grilled pork and roast or grilled chicken, best after three to five years of aging. (Aged 15 months in old barrels, minimal SO2.)

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  • Biodynamic

Rateau 2010 Beaune 1er Cru Les Bressandes

Jean-Claude Rateau has a large parcel in the 1er Cru Les Bressandes on a steep slope facing east with pebbly clay/limestone soils, conducted in biodynamic farming since 1979. The soil is warm and well-drained giving ripe, structured wines. There is a 21-day cuvaison with manual cap-punching followed by 18 months in old barrels. The 2010 is a superb wine that will age beautifully. The aromas are subtle and complex with black fruits, earth, violets and spice. The palate is relatively light, but quite intense with black cherry, earth and saline mineral flavors. This is not a "fruit bomb" but rather an old-fashioned wine of terroir. Certainly interesting to taste now but probably best after five years of cellaring, and for many years after that....

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Rateau 2011 Beaune 1er Cru Les Coucherias Blanc

Beaune 1er Cru "Les Coucherias" is high on the slope on the site of an old quarry and much of the sub-soil is limestone tailings, permitting root penetration and drainage, with a topsoil of mixed clay and limestone "marnes blanches." In biodynamic agriculture since 1979, the vineyard is a south-facing semi-circle—a very warm spot giving a full, ripe wine. The 2012 has lovely aromas of ripe pear and apple, with lemon-oil, melon and floral notes. The palate is quite round and ripe with pear, quince, lemon confit and honey backed with chalky minerals and good acidity. This is quite delicious now but probably best from 2017 to 2025.

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  • $41.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Jane et Sylvain 2012 Bourgogne Rouge

The Bourgogne Rouge from Jane et Sylvain comes from a tiny plot of young vines tended organically since planting. Broad plum and dark fruit aromas with a hint of oak and reduction when opened. With aeration, high-toned blackberry and cherry fruit emerges with hints of licorice and earth. Ripe, light to medium-bodied palate with bright cherry and red currant framed in chalky acidity. Firm earth and stone flavors in the finish. A complex and interesting Pinot Noir that will be best if decanted, or perhaps opened the day before—or after three to five years in the cellar.

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Jane et Sylvain 2011 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Fontenys

Jane et Sylvain have a superb, tiny parcel of Gevrey 1er Cru "Fontenys", high up in the southwest corner, separated from Grand Cru Ruchottes by a dirt track. They are certified organic and age the wine in old barriques. While the 2011 was not opened during our visit, we were able to taste the 2002 (it was someone's birthday) which was absolutely sensational. Not for drinking young, best after 2020, till perhaps 2040. They have none available from the 2012 vintage, we hope to get a larger quantity of the 2013...

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  • $59.99

  • Organic