I adore … love … mature white Burgundies in top condition. Sadly it’s rare to find older vintages these days, as the premox problems have changed the market for white Burgundies and the consumption of these magnificent wines.
The white Burgundies are – as I see it – consumed younger and while one could find matured white Burgundies in quite many restaurants 20 years back … they are quite rare nowadays … and even if I find them on the list … the fear of premox often prevent me from trying, if it’s from the period 1996 to 2007.
This is sad … and I think the fear of getting a bad bottle is in fact preventing me from enjoying a lot of fine wines.
SO NO MORE … lets get some mature white Burgs!
The gorgeous and magnificent 1996s
I have over the last years enjoyed quite a few stunningly fine white Burgundies from the vintage 1996.
Especially Domaine Leflaive seem to have done tremendously well in this vintage, and I have so far only had one somewhat tired Puligny village a few years back, all the other bottles from village to grand cru have performed magnificently.
The balance of these wines is quite unique, as the fruit is 100% pure with no hints of botrytis to blur the crystaline fruit. The acidity is fresh and very vibrant with it’s citrus infusion of the fruit – futher enhancing the crisp and crystaline clarity of these wines. The wines are very focused offering a transparent and crystal clear view to the terroir … quite unique wines in my view.
Taking the Domaine Lefalive wines the Puligny village is still fresh but approaching full maturity, Les Combettes is fine and matured, as is the very refined and airy Les Pucelles. The 1er crus are drinking beautifully … will keep – but in my view they can be enjoyed with no regrets today.
Moving on to the grand crus … the Batard-Monrtachet enjoyed earlier this week … (from a cold cellar) is only approaching a matured stage … still quite tight and a bit edgy at first – unfolding beautifully in the glass over some hours. From a cold celler I would store it 5 years more … on the other hand, its gorgeous now if it’s allowed to develop in the glass, or decanted.
The experience of this magnificent Domine Leflaive 1996 Batard really reminded me why we should store and cellar our white Burgundies … despite the risk of premox and or other problems.
Lets tone down the premox hysteria … and give the white Burgundies a chance to mature and unfold.