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This is the kind of Mâcon wine I spend a lot of time chasing - not just impeccably farmed (the Bonhomme domaine is cerified organic), but crisp and transparent. This is a paramount bistro wine, the kind of inexpensive white Burgundy that should be on every wine list in Paris. It's all there - the crisp green apple and yellow pear notes, the little touch of baking spice and the limestone freshness. The ripeness and energy of the 2019 vintage is on full display. So buy yourself some skate to cook in brown butter, finish it with some capers and a little frisee on the side and pop one of these open. It'll be almost like getting on a plane to France. Sam Ehrlich
The Hasard’s Bourgogne Blanc is made from hand-harvested and certified organic Chardonnay grown on a limestone/clay parcel in Aluze, next to Mercurey. The native-yeast fermentation lasts 10 months in barrel and only minimal SO2 is added at bottling. The 2019 is more fruit-forward on the nose, with aromas of dried mango, pear followed by ripe yellow fruits and river rocks. The palate is mineral, saline, and layered with notes of dried apricot, fennel, white flowers, and stone on a very generous finish. An excellent value white Burgundy that would pair well with oysters, cheeses, or roast chicken with herbs.
This has often been overlooked in the Chandon range, but only to the detriment of white Burgundy lovers everywhere. This is white wine made from parcels traditionally devoted to red, planted by Claude's mother at the beginning of the 1980s when there was a shortage of quality Pinot Noir vine material. The wine spreads across Corton-Bressandes, Chaumes, and Renardes. This has always been a favorite of mine. The wine ages beautifully but also drinks well young, as it sees no new oak, no stirring and ultimately feels fresh even in warmer vintages. This 2019, bottled with no sulfur, is incredible. It's brilliantly citrus-y, with great power and focus and quite giving now but will doubtless improve. Sam Ehrlich
"Le Clos des Topes Bizot" is a unique spot, high on the slope in Beaune just above the 1er Cru "L'Ecu," facing east, in a terroir of clay and pebbles over limestone. Harvested by hand into small crates, slow fermentation (4 to 8 months) with wild yeasts, 15 month élevage in barrel without battonage, 10% new. The 2018 Clos de Topes Bizot was kept on the lees longer due to the ripeness of the vintage. The wine shows floral ripe white fruits, apricot and almond; the palate is rich and expressive with white fruits, pineapple, citrus and mineral flavors that continue in the long finish. This is a delicous and affordable white Burgundy to serve with lobster, shrimp, a full-flavored fish dish and white meats. David Lillie
Julien Cruchandeau's stock is rising fast among Burgundy insiders. He has developed a reputation for thoughtful and careful work, in the vines and in the cellar, making wines that ultimately drink far above what one might expect from humble appellations.The vines are massale selections from the vineyards of Domaine de Villaine and average more than 60 years old. He vinifies a small percentage in barrel and leaves the rest in tank.
What a difference 2 kilometers makes! Bruno Dangin's Crémant de Bourgogne is made from 100% Pinot Noir from organically farmed vines in Molesme, located just beneath the southern border of Champagne's Aube.The limestone rich soils are the same as those of their pricier neighbor to the north. Boasting a fine bead and soft mousse and aromas of red fruits and autolyse, one would be hard pressed to spot the difference. The palate offers great depth, pure pinot fruit, and a suave, layered, persistent finish. This is a great value in bubbles and will grace the holiday table nicely. John McIlwain
Historically, Petit Chablis was often sneered at as something that rarely resembled Chablis. However, the leaps and bounds that have been made in the vineyards and the cellar mean that the overall quality of this humble appellation has grown exponentially in recent years. This is certainly the case at Domaine de L'Enclos. The estate is young but the Bouchard brothers have years of experience producing serious Chablis from organically farmed vineyards. While the 2018 was weightier, the 2019 is a more elegant wine. There is plenty of lemon and ripe green apple fruit and a great overall feeling of balance, with lovely acidity. The minerality is very exposed and becomes more intense as the wine sits in the glass. Excellent for the price and a terrific everyday white Burgundy. Sam Ehrlich
From vines between 10 and 90 years old, planted in limestone and white marl on the uppermost slopes of Bouzeron. Aged in foudre for ten to twelve months, with no lees stirring.
Lillian Duplessis considers this site as having the greatest potential within his lineup of Premier Cru vineyards. Montmains sits on the left bank of the Seine River, running parallel to several other outstanding 1er Cru sites, including Forets, Butteaux and Vaillons (as well as the heavyweight village cru Les Pargues).
With 9 hectares of vines covering 5 various premier and grand cru sites, Lillian Duplessis crafts some of the most pure and compelling Chablis we have had the pleasure of tasting. All of the vines are planted in Kimmeridgian limestone giving the wines that classic, crunchy minerality for which the region is known.
Vaugiraut is on the left bank of the Serein, south of the village of Chablis and the Grand Cru vineyards above it on the right bank of the river. The south facing amphitheater is protected from winds and exposed to the warmth of the late afternoon sun, both of which assist in ripening. This bottling from Duplessis is unique among their Premier Crus in that it sees no oak: the elevage is entirely in stainless steel.
The Paquet family is based in the Maconnais. They have nearly thirty hectares across a dozen appellations, all farmed organically and on the way to certification. This is their entry-level Chardonnay and it is delightful, full of lime and green herbs, with clear mineral tones and good freshness. There is no oak influence at all and no funny business. This is just tasty Chardonnay grown in limestone soils, perfect as we emerge from the ice and snow into Spring. Sam Ehrlich
Do not be fooled by the humble appellation - this is outrageously good. The nose crackles with lemon pith and toasted sesame seeds and on the palate it has great presence and weight. The bright fruit sways somewhere between citrus and crisp apricot and there is terrific mineral intensity. Honestly, my colleagues and I would never have thought this was Hautes-Cotes if we didn't already know. We put the whole thing down in about twenty five minutes and were clamoring for more. Sam Ehrlich ** Arrives Thursday 8/13**
Do not be fooled by the humble appellation - this is outrageously good. The nose crackles with lemon pith and toasted sesame seeds and on the palate it has great presence and weight. The bright fruit sways somewhere between citrus and crisp apricot and there is terrific mineral intensity. Honestly, my colleagues and I would never have thought this was Hautes-Cotes if we didn't already know. We put the whole thing down in about twenty five minutes and were clamoring for more. Sam Ehrlich
** Arrives Thursday 8/13**
From 3 parcels, including the estimable Limousin. **Arrives Thursday 8/13**
Frantz Chagnoleau's wines are store favorites these days. The "Clos Saint Pancras" is a single parcel of vines averaging 30 years, in lightly chalky soils with a lot of small stones. This is juicy and bright, with lime, crisp white peach fruit and white flowers. The back end is distinctly stony and fresh. Aged in a combination of older barrels and tank, this shows no trace of oak. Really, this is so appealing and tasty - a classic bistro wine in the best sense. Sam Ehrlich
The Guillemot-Michel "Une Bulle" comes from a tiny parcel of old vines on limestone with red clay, high in iron. The wine is a Pet-Nat (Methode Ancestrale) that is bottled after a short period of fermentation, leaving enough sugar in the wine for the fermentation to continue and create the desired bubbles. The wine is aged in bottle on the lees for around 18 months, then riddled and disgorged and re-bottled with a bit more "Une Bulle." The result is a very delicious aged Pet-Nat showing honeyed aromas of pear and white peach with hints of almond, marzipan and brioche. On the palate the mousse is soft and creamy with flavors of peach and quince with lime-flower and minerals and a long finish of white fruits, citrus peel and firm acidity. This is a delightful wine to sip by itself or pair with mild cheeses, patés and terrines, fruit desserts.. David Lillie
Created in 2017, this cuvee is issued from grapes in the "Champ-Rond" vineyard, vinified in amphora of 800 liters. The 65 year-old vines are grafted on "Riparia Gloire de Montpellier" an old root-stock obtained in 1880, giving very low yields with magnificent small grapes, of a deep gold color. The Retour a la Terre presents the exotic notes typical of the domaine with an extra dimension of expression due to the respiration of the amphora. The small grapes of "Champ-Rond" ripen beautifully without a high degree of alcohol - they are picked on the last day of the harvest, and the elevage in amphora gives the wine a great purity. The wine shows elegant floral, white fruit, apricot, lemon and stone aromas. The palate is round, dense and silky with fabulous length. This is a superb white Burgundy that is delicious now and will cellar beatifully for fifteen to twenty years. Highly recommended!
Julien Guillot of the Clos des Vignes du Maynes, makes this lovely Mâcon-Villages (100% Chardonnay) from certified organic parcels in Viré-Clessé, Chardonnay and Montbellet, on Bathonian limestone with clay, rich in silica. The 2018 is a fascinating and very natural Chardonnay, showing bright pale gold color and high-toned aromas of lemon zest, white peach, pear, almond and honeysuckle. The palate is dense and supple with white fruit, stone and almond flavors, finishing with citrus and minerals. This is a young wine that will benefit from aeration if drinking now, and will cellar for ten years. 30 mg/l SO2.
A very old planting of Chardonnay muscaté, which produces quite exotic notes. The vines were all planted between 1936 and 1954, in red marl soils. The aromatics here are very pretty and certainly live up to the variety's reputation—they are rich and musky, a bit like ripe cantaloupe. That said, the feel is quite delicate and there is terrific potential for aging here. Lovely. Sam Ehrlich
From a terrifically steep and cold parcel tucked back in the combe behind 1er Cru Sous Fretille, this is more linear than the Beaune blanc. There is still the citrus peel character and some stone fruit, but it feels crisper and more savory. The mineral character at the back end is complemented by a lemon-y/orange-y sherbet note that I am a sucker for. Sam Ehrlich
From vines planted in 1937 in clay and limestone, this is an Aligote of terrific structure and density, with aromatics of lemon pith and a chalky dustiness that is reminiscent of clapping blackboard erasers. Like the Fournier, there is real power in this wine, with incredible mineral depth. A terrific wine, with excellent potential for aging and generally a benchmark for Aligote in the Cote D'Or. Sam Ehrlich
The 2018 Pierre Morey Bourgogne Blanc, sourced from three parcels in Meursault, is a show-stopper of a wine. Upon opening, it shows lemon, a touch of creme brulee crust in the nose and an overall sense of richness that one would expect in a solar vintage such as this one. However, this is all held firmly in check by plenty of acidity and a sense of salty minerality that comes to dominate the wine. It is spilling over with chalk and cool stoniness, adding tension and focus as it sits in the glass. Everything else kind of fades away, leaving only you and the earth. This is magnificent for the level and will satisfy Burgundy cravings tonight or in five years if you are inclined to put a few bottles in the cellar. Sam Ehrlich
From vines just outside Pouilly itself, this sees nearly two years in oak. Apparently in 2019, they had to fight to get AOC status for this. The authorities found "oxidative"notes that they felt rendered it unworthy of an appellation designation. After tasting this wine, I am baffled. This is superb, full fruited with tropical and citrus notes and an incredible mineral thread. There is great intensity and beautiful acidity. Honestly, when we at the store tasted this we were all flattened by it. Don't miss out. Sam Ehrlich
From 25-30 year old vines planted in clay and limestone, this is just a terrific village wine. The nose has lovely peach and floral notes, as well as a touch of toasty reduction. The minerality is palpable here and no shortage of acidity for length and energy. Consider a short splashy decant and watch this wine really come to life, with yellow and green citrus notes and more stone fruit. Sam Ehrlich
The vines here are on average forty years old in red clay soils over rocky sub-soil. This was a true Grand Cru on the day we tasted and a great and quite open young Corton. The aromatics were soaring, with strawberry, lots of red flowers and a lovely dustiness to it. All of these were in full evidence on the palate too, accented with cocoa nib and with a lovely full mouthfeel. A great wine tomorrow and for years to come. Sam Ehrlich
From 50-year-old vines located mid-slop where the shallow soils overlay flat limestone rocks, giving way to clay sub-soils. Just a touch of reduction in the nose but giving way to round juicy cherry and roses, with a lovely quenching quality and very stony. 100% whole bunch here but doesn't betray it. Sam Ehrlich
"Le Clos des Topes Bizot" is a unique spot with vines planted in 1960, high on the slope in Beaune just above the 1er Cru "L'Ecu," facing east, in a terroir of clay and pebbles over limestone. The grapes from this high elevation vineyard are harvested late and undergo a short pre-fermentation maceration, aging is in two and three year-old barrels. The 2018 shows high-toned aromas of ripe black cherry and red currant fruit with violet, brown spice, earth and citrus, quite elegant. The palate is dense and earthy with sappy black cherry and black raspberry - intensely mineral with firm acidity, earth and black fruits that linger in the long finish. This is a quite elegant, beautifully balanced and "mineral" Burgundy at a very reasonable price, that will benefit from a few hours open or three to five years of cellaring. David Lillie
From vines grown in the calcareous clay soils of Les Reversées premier cru toward the bottom of the hill in the center of the slope by Les Teurons. This is a bit more delicate and lower in alcohol than Rateau's "Bressandes" but still quite deep and generous in 2018 showing ripe black cherry, boysenberry, notes of cherry pit and earth on the nose. The palate is quite dense but still with nice brightness with ripe black fruits, hints of iodine and iron and soil beneath supple structure. Succulent acidity and savory mineral notes offset the ripeness and lend energy and drive on a rich, palate-coating finish which is very long with elegant black raspberry and red currant fruit. The purity of fruit and earth notes are finely balanced - this is an excellent Burgundy for the mid-term. A fine pairing with braised chicken thighs with mustard, tarragon, and shallots. A great value from the pioneer of biodynamic Burgundy!
Apparently Les Vallerots 1er Cru is a near monopoly of Chantal Lescure on a steep slope in the combe above "Vaucrains" on very shallow stony soils over the limestone at 260m altitude. Aged in approx 30% new oak by Francis Miquel. The nose is initially closed and tight with deep red fruit aromas emerging with notes of black raspberry, plum, cherry pit and a hint of anise.The palate shows deep, dense red fruits with great elegance and energy, a superb combination of fruit and terroir. This will need a long decant if drinking now, best to hold 3 - 5 years then enjoy until 2035+ David Lillie
Produced from young vines that don't quite make the cut for Gevrey-Chambertin, this is uncommonly good. The fruit here shows more raspberry alongside the classic strawberry of Gevrey and a touch of spice from the thirty percent of whole clusters included in the fermentation. The texture here is quite striking, slinky and full in the mid-palate but narrowing at the backend as the mineral component comes to the fore. This is excellent for the level. Sam Ehrlich
This comes from thirty-year old vines around Marsannay and is a relatively new cuvee at Trapet, produced only since 2016. A little quiet just at opening, this came to life magnificently over the course of 45 minutes. Brambly red fruit and spicy notes up front, with gentle suave tannins and plenty of lift and cut from the limestone. This is quite elegant and will age well for the next five to ten years. Sam Ehrlich
From vines between forty and seventy years old, this should be a fairly exuberant expression of Gevrey.
This sits high on the hill in Morey, above Clos Saint Denis Grand Cru. The vines are just over 50 years old.
From three outstanding parcels of village-level Morey Saint Denis, including Clos Solon and Chenevery, with vines between 50 and 85 years old. This wine is often easily the equal of many producers 1er Crus.
From 10 to 50 year-old vines grown on limestone soils (Middle Jurassic!) in the commune of Aluze, Cotes Chalonnaise, certified organic since 1999. This is a lovely Bourgogne Rouge, showing the ripeness of the 2019 vintage, but in a medium-bodied, balanced and bright style that is quite delicious! Vivid aromas of black cherry, raspberry, violet and pepper, with a bright palate of blackberry and spicy red-currant/cherry fruit framed in mineral flavors and firm acidity. Delicious now served cool, it will benefit from decanting or a few years in the cellar as well. DL
Julien Guillot made beautiful wines in 2018 and this Pinot Noir is no exception, from 3 parces of very chalky soils in the Macon - showing lovey texture, complexity, finesse and freshness. The lovely aromas are of raspberry, blood orange, tart plum, brown spice, earth and tea, for starters. The palate is soft, silky and refreshing with black fruits mingled with earth, citrus, stone and tea with plum and raspberry emerging in the finish. Any lover of natural wine should try this! No added SO2, 100% delicious.
Julien Guillot at the Clos des Vignes du Maynes makes this Mâcon Rouge from many different old varieties of Gamay, including Gamay "teinturiers" with thick skins and dark juice, with no added SO2. The 2018 shows a deep red color with aromas of blackberry, tart cherry, srawberry, black pepper, roast meat, fennel, citrus peel, violet... The palate is ripe and elegant with citrusy black fruits, earth and mineral flavors, chalky and long. "This wine is indestructible" says Julien, and it's obviously built to last. Serve with a farm chicken in sauce, and decant or open in advance, but best to cellar for five or ten years. David Lillie
Have a sensational "natural" Thanksgiving with this gorgeous zero-sulfur Gamay from the Clos des Vignes du Maynes! Made from Gamay Petit Grains planted in 1953, grown on a limestone parcel high in magnesium, in the Clos des Vignes du Maynes in Cruzille, organic since 900 AD, now certified biodynamic. The energetic Julien Guillot vinifies his reds without sulfur or additives of any kind, producing complex, mineral, elegant wines that transcend their appellation. The 2015s here are extraordinary, showing the elegance, purity and balance typical of the estate with the wonderful ripeness of the vintage. The wine shows gorgeous red and black fruit aromas with cranberry, earth, stone and musk and hints of mint, chocolate and spice. The palate is bright and intense with balckberry, citrus, stone and earthy flavors, that continue on the very long mineral finish. Always one of the greatest Gamays produced anywhere, the 2015 Manganite is a young wine that will benefit from decanting or five to fifteen years in the cellar. Highly recommended! DL
Made from Gamay Petit Grains planted in 1953, grown on a limestone parcel high in magnesium, in the Clos des Vignes du Maynes in Cruzille, organic since 900 AD (!), now certified Biodynamic. The energetic Julien Guillot vinifies his reds without sulfur or additives of any kind, producing complex, mineral, elegant wines that transcend their appellation. The 2019s here are extraordinary, showing the elegance, purity and balance typical of the estate with the wonderful density and ripeness of the vintage. The wine shows gorgeous red and black fruit aromas with cranberry, earth, stone and musk and hints of mint, chocolate and spice. The palate is bright and intense with blackberry, citrus, stone and earthy flavors, that continue on the very long mineral finish. Always one of the greatest Gamays produced anywhere, the 2019 Manganite is a young wine that will benefit from decanting or five to fifteen years in the cellar. Highly recommended!