“Gilles of Arcenant: There is something poetic about the beautiful hills of the Hautes Côtes and the wines of Gilles Moustie. They are slightly rustic, perhaps, but yes, also poetic.”
This was the opening of my first article about Domaine de la Douaix, a special estate with some exceptional wines.
As I wrote: “Gilles is a sturdy Belgian who’s in the Hautes Côtes with a strong purpose. He is certainly the guy to take the high road style- and quality-wise and, with the help of global warming, this yields some exciting possibilities, both in his wines and in their role in cuisine.
Domaine de la Douaix is not trying to make soft Meursaults in the Hautes Côtes, as Gilles is proud of his Arcenant location and the stony style of the wines from the hills of the upper Côtes.”
Domaine de la Douaix – a relatively new estate
Gilles’ father made his original investment in the Hautes Côtes back in 1997, but it took almost a decade for Domaine de la Douaix to be created in 2006. Gilles moved to Burgundy in 2008 and is now running the estate.
The domaine produces four different whites: Three are from the local vineyards in Arcenant, plus – for good measure – a white Corton. There are reds from the Corgoloin area and Nuits-Saint-Georges to round out the portfolio, but still with an Hautes Côtes accent.
And so, to the notes.
The tasting on March 6
Two elements in the vinification here are important: the seven-day cold soak (macération à froid) that results in a slightly perfumed note in the wines alongside their evident fruitiness, and the perfect balance achieved by a long elevage that brings out the wines’ mineral notes and structure.
This rare combination produces both lovely and more-ish wines. And on occasion, the generous perfumed sensation of the macération à froid can bring out a delightful sensual note with quite an emotional hint.
Domaine de la Douaix Bourgogne Pinot Noir Vieilles Vignes 2021
The Bourgogne Pinot Noir is a sturdy blend of grapes from Corgoloin and Premeaux. It’s not the easiest wine in the line-up to tackle, as it needs time – in fact, plenty of time for a Bourgogne rouge. The cold soak helps induce a perfumed note, and the fruit is quite generous for a 2021. It comes with an edge though, and is sturdy and hearty. With 15% whole clusters included, this is a wine for food.
(Drink From 2026) – Good (86-87p) – Tasted 06/03/2023
Domaine de la Douaix Hautes Côtes de Nuits Clos de Faivelots 2021
The Hautes Côtes Clos de Faivelots is more forgiving and subtle, although still quite brawny, and with a craving for food. These are not vins de soif. This is precise and mineral-driven and, as said, a culinary wine offering delightful possibilities with its intense mineral finish.
(Drink From 2021) – Good (86p) – Tasted 06/03/2023
Domaine de la Douaix Côtes de Nuits Villages Terres Nobles 2021
The Terres Nobles is from four Côtes de Nuits terroirs: Aux Quartiers, Les Chaillots, and two others in Corgoloin. Again, 15% whole clusters in the vinification spices up the cocktail a bit, with a charming floral pitch. There’s quite a generous note on the palate, and it’s perfumed and more forward. A lively wine.
(Drink From 20216) – Good+ (87p) – Tasted 06/03/2023
Domaine de la Douaix Côtes de Nuits Village Vieilles Vignes 2021
The Côtes de Nuits Village VV is a step up vineyard-wise to the core of the appellation: Les Vignottes in Premeaux (87-year-old vines) and Les Chaillots in Corgoloin (106-year-old vines). These are very old vines indeed, and Les Vignottes is just below Fred Mugnier’s Clos de la Marechale. Together these plots produce delicate yet deep fruit with silky generosity and a hedonistic touch. These are delightful terroirs, with lovely balance and openness.
(Drink From 2025) – Very Good (88p) – Tasted 06/03/2023 –
Domaine de la Douaix Savigny-les-Beaune Les Dessus les Vermots 2021
From a hilltop in Savigny-les-Beaune comes this treat, with lovely fruit, vividness, and delicacy. Thanks to the low yield (22 hectolitres/hectare), there’s good ripeness from healthy grapes. This has some clear hedonistic values, including good energy and drinkability. It comes from the village terroir Les Dessus les Vermots on the southern side of the Rhoin.
(Drink From 2027) – Very Good (88p) – Tasted 06/03/2023 –
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