I’m now on day two of my June Burgundy trip .. five magnificent tastings so far – Domaine Michéle et Patrice Rion, Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüè, Domaine Heitz-Lochardet. Domaine Jean Grivot and Domaine Mugneret-Gibourg.
It’s very humid in Burgundy .. more rain today … and the forecast say more rain in the following days … sadly more bad news for the troubled 2016 vintage.
As for the 2o15 vintage – the wines are still developing in cask … some of the wines has completed malo, while others are just to begin the malolactic fermentation. The amount of malic acid is hwoever very low in 2015, so its under most circumstances easy to taste the wines even before the malolactic fermentation, but it is nevertheless important to notice that this is at an early stage, so please this is not the final notes on these wines …
Impressions of the 2015 reds
The overall impression is very positive indeed, as the wines are balanced, generous, rich with sufficient freshness to make the wines juicy, very appealing and drinkable. The wines made by the producers mentioned above are not “hot” or overripe (as are other 2015s), they are very fresh and juicy – despite the relatively low level of aciditity.
The wines are transparent and the red fruit is quite forward in the wines, offering a lovely expression of terroir. The midpalate offer sweet very genereous and rich fruit .. whith an inherent freshness and play between cooler and sweeter red fruit notes. The fruit is coulis like with a lovely freshness … vibrant and very charming indeed.
There is in my view a fundemental difference between the 2005 vintage and the 2015 vintage … and that is the tannins. The quite abundant tannins in 2005 give the wines an slightly austere side in their yout, and if the wines are too extracted this will most likely persist as the wine ages on bottle.
The 2015 wines are just generous, so the balance is more on the fruit side .. but they are big wines, so if handled badly with heavy extraction one could have som big and rustic monsters ..
Day one – Rion, Vogüé and Heitz-Locharedet
Day one was a lovely mixture of experience and youth. Patrice Rion has more than 20 years wine making experience, and Francois Millet of Domaine Vogüè just had his 30 years anniversary at Domaine Vogüé … and lastly Armand Heitz of Heitz-Lochardet only has a few years experience as a wine maker at the family estate in Chassagne.
All have produced some gorgeous 2015s – the Rion wines are very juicy and pure, and offer a lovely generous zappy fruit. Patrice Rion feel that the 2015 vintage is the best he has ever produced, and with 30 years of experience that is indeed saying something. The wines from Rion are truly gorgeous in my view.
The Vogüé wines are still at a very early stage – with the malolactic fermentation just beginning. Although they are at this stage they are very charming and generous with a lovely expression of terroir – showing the beautiful qualities of the vintage.
Lastly Armand Heitz has made some beautiful wines in 2015s .. the reds offering high drinkablility .. very expressive due to the whole cluster vinification … beautifully made with a rich and juicy fruit. The whites were picked very early (starting with the Chevalier-Montrachet on August 27th) and they are offering a very fine freshness for the vintage. There is hope after all for the white 2015s after tasting the whites from Armand Heitz … well done.
Photo: Armand Heitz
Day two – the day of the Vosne ladies
Day two also offered youth and experiece – as I visited Mathilde Grivot at Domaine Jean Grivot who started at the Domaine in 2010 and is taking over more and more from her father Etienne Grivot, and then Domaine Mugneret Gibourg where experience rules personified by the very generous and charming Mugneret sisters …
Let me just say this … the Grivot 2015s are truly gorgeous and in some cases mind-bogglingly magnificent … they are still before malo … so of word of caution … but I predict greatness here … the Echezeaux left me breathless just to give an example. The Grivot wines are improving rapidly from year to year and have now taken a step into the top league … well done by Mathilde Grivot and the team at Grivot. This is surely the best wines I have tasted from this estate.
At my first visit at Mugneret-Gibourg I was received by Marie-Christine and got a fine presentation of the domaine and its facinating history. Very happy to finally be able to visit this domaine. The 2015s here are just magnificent offering the same qualities found at the other tastings … i.e. freshness, transparency, generousity, richness and charm. All balanced and in place .. and the wines here are now though the malolactic fermentation … such lovely wines. Also here the Echezeaux showed great form .. exited to taste the Liger-Belair Echezeaux tomorrow.