2007 Burgundies for Brodie and Raz

Wellington, New Zealand

Tasted July 19, 2014 by HowardNZ with 267 views


Brodie and Raz were in town so a group of us got together at Mike and Cathy's place and enjoyed a lovely meal of risotto, Terakihi and venison, finishing with Époisses and aged Comté.

Mike and Cathy are leading a 2007 red Burgundies tasting next week, so that was a theme of the wines we brought. Also, Brodie and I had been discussing the merits of top NZ Syrahs versus Northern Rhone, so were keen to compare a couple.

All wines were served blind except the Homage ...

Flight 1 (12 notes)

White - Sparkling
1996 Duval-Leroy Champagne Brut Millésimé France, Champagne
Colour light gold. A fresh nose of green apple, greengage, wet stone, white pear, with some blanched nuts and a little almond brioche. In the mouth, this Champagne is right in the zone now. It has good freshness with bright acidity, flavours of green apple, lemon, pears, with some blanched almonds and minerals on back palate.
2007 Domaine William Fèvre Chablis Grand Cru Bougros Cote de Bouguerots France, Burgundy, Chablis, Chablis Grand Cru
Pale colour. A classic Chablis nose of lemons, pear, white peach, chalk, limestone and crushed rock, with quite strong salinity. On palate, clearly serious Grand Cru volume and power, I picked this as 2007. Real drive and energy. Drinking very well now, right at its peak. A pure, complex and detailed flavour profile of pears, lemon, crushed granite and other minerals, with marine salinity. I thought this was an excellent Bougros, with beautiful balance including in the elevage and acids. Some however thought it was resting a little too much on its acids.
2008 Domaine Servin Chablis Grand Cru Bougros France, Burgundy, Chablis, Chablis Grand Cru
Pale lemon. Aromas of limes, lemons, green apples, granite and minerals. Quite a primary nose. On palate, the acid profile was much more prominent, blind you could not see any link with the Fèvre Bougros. Seeming very primary, quite rich, the acids perhaps a little aggressive. Serious structure, scale and power on this wine, but lacking the elegance and balance of the Fèvre. Perhaps give this wine 2-3 years.
2007 Domaine Drouhin-Laroze Chambertin-Clos de Bèze France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru
Deep red colour. A very pretty, delicate, floral nose, making me think of Chambolle. Also notes of red berries, particularly raspberries and red cherries and a little spice. Rauno detected a little VA lift. On palate, a silky mouthfeel has us suggesting Chambolle or Vosne and not, at all, Gevrey. A little below medium bodied but clearly Grand Cru structure and power. Quite detailed flavour profile including red berries, chalk and minerals, iodine etc, light but not, to me, in any way underripe. I thought that the acids were not over-prominent but again it was commented that this wine was perhaps resting on its acids. Drinking very well now, but probably not for long-term cellaring (5-8 years?).
2007 Domaine Fourrier Griotte-Chambertin Vieille Vigne France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru
95 points
A very light cherry colour. And what a nose! All chalk, flint and minerals, with notes of cranberry, raspberries and red currants. Very pure. In the mouth, for me, this was an epiphany wine. The flavours were a mixture of delicate red berries and piercing chalk, limestone, granite and other crushed rocks and minerals. Perfectly ripe with Grand Cru structure and power, but very light on its feet. Beautifully balanced and focused. Approachable now but there is no hurry to drink this. Mike said this was the best Fourrier Griotte he had ever had. WoTN (in tough competition) and one of my WoTYs (thanks Nick).
2007 Faiveley Mazis-Chambertin France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru
Deep garnet colour. A totally different nose again. Much more expressive and more typical Gevrey than the other two Gevreys in the flight. Aromas of red and black cherries, Asian spices, warm earth and smokey, bloodied barbequed game meat with some sauvage. The Mazis looked the most primary of the three wines and was described by Nick as a bit of an ugly duckling. Serious, palate staining fruit weight, packed with ripe fruit, and power. The wine was slow-oed for four hours before tasting but this wine probably needed more decanting. It opened appreciably in the glass over the dinner. An excellent Gevrey Grand Cru with flavours of red and black cherries, spices, warm earth and bloody meat. Sympathetic elevage with sweet, fine grained tannins and acids in balance. Approachable now, it's not at all shut down, but I'd wait 5+ years before opening another.
2010 Rhys Chardonnay Alpine Vineyard USA, California, San Francisco Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains
Pale gold. A rich, ripe bouquet of vanilla bean, almonds, lemon, pear and some lactic aromas. The toasty oak component is quite obvious here. This is hedonistic, with more weight and less complexity and focus than the Combettes. It was a primary, large scaled Chardonnay with plenty of fruit, that was suggested as being a bit too broad and lacking acid. I put this down to the youth of the wine, which might develop more detail and nuance once it sheds its baby fat.
2006 Etienne Sauzet Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Combettes France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru
Light gold. A lovely bouquet of pears, nuts, white flowers, lemons and minerals, with a touch of almond croissant. This is classy, right in the zone and fully ready now. Beautiful fruit weight, good acidity and lovely tension and balance. Citric flavours, with nuts and minerals, quite detailed. An excellent Combettes.
1996 Comte Armand Pommard 1er Cru Clos des Epeneaux France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Pommard 1er Cru
Deep red colour. An attractive bouquet of spice, earth, dry underbrush, red and black cherries and a touch of tobacco leaf. Superb on palate, I'm guessing this wine is from the mid 2000s, but with this profile of acids, 1996 is not too much of a surprise. The flavours are spice and dusty earth, and dried and fresh cherries and raspberries, just beginning to open up. With time in the glass it opens more, drinking beautifully, at one moment spicy, the next savoury. Detailed and complex. Sappy, serious fruit weight, structure and length. The acids and the tannins are now well integrated, but ideally I'd still give this wine 3+ more years cellar time.
2006 Trinity Hill Syrah Homage New Zealand, North Island, Hawke's Bay, Gimblett Gravels
Served non-blind beside the Clape Cornas. Nose saturated with dark berries - black cherries, blackberries etc - with notes of dark chocolate, some black pepper and cherry cola. A fairly sweet bouquet, showing quite a lot of oak spices. In the mouth the Homage seemed very primary, showing a hint of residual sugar. The flavours were black fruits, dark chocolate and little espresso. A good, well made wine, but seeming to me a little too 'generic'. Powerful with serious structure and good length, but lacking the complex flavour profile of the Clape. I would hold this wine for at least five years. If you do open a bottle, give it plenty of oxygen, it opened appreciably in the glass after 10 pm (after being originally opened at 4 pm). Syrah 91%, Viognier 9%, 14.4% alc, I understand 100% new French oak.
1998 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
Brought by Brodie to compare with my Homage. Deep, fairly primary red. Expressive aromatics of warm clay, black olives, spices, dry brushwood, old spicy plums and game meats. The nose blossomed with a couple of hours in the glass. Very primary on the palate, I guessed it was a 2007 Hermitage. Real structure, dry extract and power here, with good length. A really complex and interesting flavour profile of spices, warm clay, underbrush, bloody meat and rusty iron around a core of mainly red berry fruits. There was an interesting astringency of the tannins, and some rusticity, suggesting that ideally this wine should be given another five years. Decant thoroughly if you open now.
2007 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair La Romanée France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, La Romanée Grand Cru
Light red colour. Popped and poured, it took some time for this wine's bouquet to blossom. I detected aromas of tar, black spices, warm earth, black and red cherries and chalky minerals, also some charry oak. On the palate, the purity, elegance and finesse of the wine were the first things to strike me. My guess was that the wine was a 2007 Vosne and even though it was not much more than medium weight, its Grand Cru gravitas and class were obvious. Real energy, precision and balance, the flavour profile very detailed including red cherries, raspberries, wet river stones, limestone and other minerals. At this young age, some oak needs to integrate. Incredibly suave, fine grained tannins. All class. Mike said that it was better than the 2006. (Thanks very much Mike).


Thanks to our hosts and attendees for an excellent evening!

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