One of my favorite domaines to visit in Burgundy is Domaine Hubert Lamy … one of leading domaines in Saint-Aubin … and a epicenter for innovative wine making.
Olivier Lamy is the dynamic and very energetic head of the family estate … and have been so since 1995. He is deeply rooted in the terroir and the Burgundian history … but also a man of visions and courage – who really try to push the limits to increase quality.
I have travelled many years in Burgundy and I don’t think I have ever met a man with such a revolutionary dedication to quality – whilst many producers move to organic farming to improve quality … Olivier also increase the density of wines in the vineyards to test if this will improve the wines – and judged from the wines tasted it does.
High Density vineyards
As mentioned above Olivier Lamy is making some large scale experiments to evaluate the effects of increasing the density of the vines. Normally there are 10.000 – 12.000 vines on one hectare, but Olivier have increased this density significantly in several vineyards.
The idea is not new – as the density in the vineyards in this area were much higher before the phylloxera problems in the late 19th century. But to my knowledge only very few growers is actually producing wines from high density vineyards these days … and while the experiments with high density are very hard work … the initial results are very positive.
The idea behind increasing the density of the wines is to force the vines to grow deeper roots as the competition for water and nourishment is higher in a high density vineyard. Deeper roots gives more minerality and Olivier explains that the wines also produce smaller grapes with higher sugar content and more intense flavors on the high density plots.
Olivier is working with high density sections in several vineyards. In Derriere Chez Edouard the density is increased to 30.000 vines per hectare in one part of the vineyard – and from this section he makes a special cuvee Saint-Aubin Derriere Chez Edouard Haute Densité. The vines were planted in 2000 and 2007.
In Puligny Montrachet Les Tremblots the desity has been increased to 22.000 vines per hectare in one section – from this section he makes Puligny Montrachet Haute Densité. And even on Criots Bartard-Montrachet he has increased the density to 24.000 vines per herctare – on his 0.05 ha plot.
I have tasted several of the high density wines in the 2013 vintage, and the difference in intensity and quality is quite amazing. The Haute Densité sections produce a wine with more of everything … more weight, more minerality, more fruit and presumably also more acidity. The balance of the wine is however maintained and the quality level is moved at least one step up. The effect is similar to the improvement producers see when they start to use organic principles in the vineyard … but the improvement with high density vines seem to be even more significant.
The 2013 whites from Domaine Hubert Lamy
Olivier Lamy have made some gorgeous 2013s … pure, transparant, delicate and energetic wines.
The acidity is more vivid than in the 2012 vintage and the aromatic profile is more powerful and expressive … but on that account they perhaps lack a bit of the sexy delicacy of the 2012s. Bottom line … different in style … but quality wise the differences are modest. My preferences are clear .. I like both!
To the notes …
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Bourgogne Les Chataigniers 2013
The Bourgogne Les Chataigniers 2013 is a forward and delightful wine with a nice expression of terroir for this level. The bouquet offer lovely orchard fruits .. fresh and pure. On the palate quite silky and rich for this level and vintage … good energy from the 2013 acidity and the nice mineralic impression. A lovely entry level white ..
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin “La Princèe” 2013
The village Saint-Aubin 2013 is forward and expressive with a lovely balance between pure fruit, fresh acidity and a crisp minerality. The nose is offering lovely white and yellow orchard fruits and a discrete citrus infused stony minerality. On the palate lovely balance, good weight and fruit – matched by a crisp acidity and a nice display of terroir. Impressive quality for this level.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Le Concis du Champ 2013
The Chassagne Le Concis du Champs Puligny-Montrachet is a lovely village made from young wines – planted in 2005. The terroir is located below the village of Chassagne – quite low on the slope.
The nose offer classic Chassagne minerality – white and yellow orchard fruits, – notes of pear apple and white flowers – a bit rustic perhaps, but quite expressive. On the palate quite rich and dense for a village, well focused by the powerful acidity of the vintage. A classic Chassagne village – weighty rather than refined – a nice glass though.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Santenay Clos des Gravieres 2013
The Santeney Clos des Gravieres is a new wine in the Lamy portfolio … made from quite young wines – some planted in 2011 while another section is from 1966. The nose offer lovely yellow fruits brought forward by a lovely chalky minerality. On the palate quite rich and delightfully pure offering a long mineral driven finish. Quite impressive given the age of the wines … a lovely glass of Santenay.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Puligny-Montrachet Vieilles Vignes 2013
The Puligny-Montrachet is made on the village terroir “Les Tremblots” from very old vines – planted in 1946 and 1970. The terroir is located below Les Ensignieres on the Chassagne side of Puligny. In the expressive white orchard fruits – pear, tangerine and acacia blossom – infused with a lovely chalky minerality. On the palate ripe, vibrant and expressive with a gorgeous display of Puligny terroir. Very fine nerve and weight for a village Puligny … perfectly balanced by the crisp acidity. Top end Puligny village … one of my … many … favorites in the Lamy portfolio.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Clos du Meix 2013
The Saint-Aubin Clos du Meix 2013 is a very good effort. The nose is slightly reduced but is nevertheless showing lovely fruit – notes of apple, tangerine – with a fine citrus infused minerality. On the palate rich but focused – very balanced and harmonious.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Les Frionnes 2013
The Saint-Aubin Les Frionnes is one of the “lesser” 1er crus but still a both gorgeous and filigree wine. The nose offer lovely ripe fruit brought forward by a citrus infused filigree mineraliity. On the palate refined and balanced with a very good midpalate fruit – round, harmonious – with a quite long mineral infused finish.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Murgers Dents de Chien 2013
The Saint-Aubin Murgers Dents de Chien is a mineralic powerhouse – coming from one of the top 1er crus of the appellation. The nose offer expressive white and yellow orchard fruits … delivered with a very powerful stony minerality. On the palate lovely pure fruit – focused and energized by a powerful and very intense minerality. Textbook Saint-Aubin … love the energy and the expression of this mighty terroir.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Clos de la Chateniere 2013
Saint Aubin Clos de la Chateniere is offering a more civilized expression of the Saint-Aubin minerality than the Murgers dents de Chien In the nose delicate and pure fruit .. notes of pear, citrus with hints of exotic orchard fruits … and spiced with a powerful yet quite filigree minerality. On the palate intense and rich with a lovely nerve and mineralic tension. A refined and elegant effort – love the purity and balance.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin En Remilly 2013
The En Remilly is step up in quality with it’s crystaline purity and powerful minerality. The bouquet is bursting with citrus infused minerality and rich white and yellow fruits- notes of pear and hints of some more exotic orchard fruits. On the palate expressive fruit brought forward by a very vibrant acidity and a powerful minerality. Love the nerve and energy in the long and powerful mineralic finish. One of my favorite wines from Lamy and from the appellation – magnificent juice.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Les Macherelles 2013
Back to Chassagne with the 1er cru Les Macherelles – a terroir located just north of the Chassagne village, and south of Chenevottes. The nose offer classic Chassagne minerality .. expressive and intense fruit. On the palate rich and weighty with a powerful ripe midpalate fruit. The 2013 acidity is doing a fine balancing job here. A weighty Chassagne … classic.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Les Chaumees 2013
On the way to Saint-Aubin we find the Chassagne Chaumees terroir – located at the top of the Chassagne slope – towards the Saint-Aubin valley. The bouquet offer rich and expressive white and yellow orchard fruits supported by a lovely stony minerality. On the palate quite rich and weighty fruit focused perfectly by the lovely minerality and the fresh acidity. Love the long mineral infused finish … a delightful Chassagne.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Puligny Montrachet Les Tremplots HD 2013
The high density version of he Puligny Les Tremplots is a magnificent village effort. The nose offer lovely intense yellow fruit and a classic Puligny minerality. On the palate rich and very intense – offering much more depth than the regular Les Tremplots. It’s intense, deep and long with a impressive focus and expression of terroir – quite outstanding for a village. This really underlines the potential in high density planting.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Derriere Chez Edouard HD 2013
The Derriere Chez Edouard HD 2013 is another tribute to high density planting. The nose offer deep yellow fruit – notes of pear, almonds, lemon – intense and pure, with a lovely expression of terroir. On the palate rich, focused and expressive with a very deep fruit. Impressive depth and intensity.
Domaine Hubert Lamy, Criots Batard-Montrachet 2013
The Criots Bartard-Montrachet is a masterpiece rivaling or even surpassing some of the best Batards produced in this vintage. Oliver has also employed high density plantings on Criots Batard … and this has in my view taken this wine to another level. The nose offer very intense and deeply expressive fruit – notes of apple, pear, almonds and citrus – brought forward by a focusing and powerful minerality. On the palate very focused and deep with a core of intensely layered yellow fruit. It’s beautifully balanced, long and very intense. A magnificent grand cru … very impressive indeed.
Tasting Notes for this producer
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Chez Edouard HD 2011 February 9, 2017
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Chez Edouard HD 2008 May 10, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Les Macherelles 2013 April 13, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Chez Edouard HD 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Puligny Les Tremplots HD 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Les Chaumees 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Criots Batard-Montrachet 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin En Remilly 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Clos de la Chateniere 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Les Frionnes 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Clos du Meix 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Puligny-Montrachet Vieilles Vignes 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Santenay Clos des Gravieres 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Chassagne Le Concis du Champ 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin “La Princèe” 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Bourgogne Les Chataigniers 2013 April 4, 2015
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin En Remilly 2012 December 31, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Criots-Batard-Montrachet 1989 October 14, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Les Frionnes 2012 April 19, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Puligny-Montrachet Vieilles Vignes 2012 April 17, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin Derriere Chez Edouard 2012 April 15, 2014
- Hubert Lamy, Saint Aubin Clos de la Chateniere 2012 April 10, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin En Remilly 2012 April 6, 2014
- Domaine Hubert Lamy, Saint-Aubin En Remilly 2008 March 28, 2014