A Taste Of Burgundy – June 2015

Thursday, June 18, 2015 12:30 AM

  A Taste Of Burgundy

 

June 2015

For those seeking savings on two bottles of Burgundy; whether you’re a beginner, and want to learn more about the region, or if you know a little and wish to learn more, or even if you’re an established Burg lover, our bi-monthly Taste of Burgundy club is for you! Sign up today.

Basic Facts for those of you who are new to the program: Every two months we select two Burgundies, one red and one white. We include write-ups detailing the background of the grower, the vineyard source, and the wine. Finally we knock a significant percentage off the prices of the wines, making the Sampler price $89.98. If you would like us to add you to the Sampler Club and receive the wines regularly, please notify us in the comments field, and we will charge your card accordingly. If you would like us to ship faster than the standard ground service, please specify this as well.

 



2012 Meursault Les Chevalières Domaine Xavier Monnot

Xavier Monnot continues the winemaking tradition for his family that has been producing wine in the Côte de Beaune since 1723. He took over his grandfather’s Domaine René Monnier in 1994 and continues to produce top quality, terroir-driven Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. His domaine is located in the village of Meursault, and the vineyards there are the core of his production. The Les Chevalières vineyard lies just west of the village, and has the reputation of yielding crisp, mineral-driven Chardonnay. 2012 was a challenging vintage all over Burgundy. Production was way down below average, but 10 generations of family know-how aided Monnot, and what little wine he made is of top quality. Made from vines whose average age is 45 years, Xavier’s 2012 Meursault Les Chevalières is alive with white stone fruit, citrus, and blossomy aromas. The palate is fresh and crisp with wonderful interplay between the white fruit, zippy acid, and mineral framework. It’s a wine that can be enjoyed now, or it can be cellared through 2022.



2012 Pommard Les Vaumuriens Domaine Gabriel Billard

Domaine Gabriel Billard. You don’t hear much about this domaine, and we have been told that they have never submitted samples to any well-known publication or critic. What we do know is that it belongs to the family of former longtime Drouhin oenologist Laurence Jobard who runs the domaine along with her sister Mireille, and their production is absurdly low. As previously reported, despite the tiny production, there are some who believe the quality of 2012 red Burgundy has the potential to outshine famous vintages such as 2010, 2009, or 2005. Pommard’s Les Vaumuriensvineyard lays just west of the village bodering Volnay on one side and Pommard’s most famous Cru, Les Rugiens, on the other. Laurence’s daughter, Claudie Jobard is the winemaker now and she produced just 2 barrels of 2012 Pommard Les Vaumuriens! That’s just 50 cases … for the world! It’s a high-toned Pinot Noir with excellent balance and structure. Considering its scarcity and quality, this off-the-beaten-path domaine should be on the radar of Burgundy lovers everywhere. Drink from 2018-2029. –Peter Zavialoff

Reg. $129.98

On Sale $89.98

A TASTE OF BURGUNDY MARCH/APRIL 2012

Saturday, March 10, 2012 9:11 PM


A great way to learn about Burgundy and its wines, and (even better) the perfect way to get a discount on two high quality bottles. Sign up now!
 

 

Click here to receive the Taste of Burgundy Sampler automatically every other month.

Basic Facts for those of you who are new to the program: Every two months we select two Burgundies, one red and one white. We include write-ups detailing the background of the grower, the vineyard source, and the wine. Finally we knock a significant percentage off the prices of the wines, making the Sampler price $89.98. If you would like us to add you to the Sampler Club and receive the wines regularly, please specify “store pickup” or “ship it” in the comments field, and we will charge your card accordingly. If you would like us to ship faster than the standard ground service, please specify this as well.
2006 Puligny-Montrachet Domaine Xavier Monnot
Xavier Monnot is a relatively young man, but he is a vigneron with an old soul. His work in his vineyards, his choice of clones, his pruning techniques, de-budding, how he chooses to re-plant, and the very limited influence of new oak on his wines, all are examples of his commitment to the land and to the sincerityof his wines. Xavier likes to call it “the message of terroir”, as he is a firm believer in letting the vineyard do the talking. For his 2006 Puligny-Montrachet, Monnot sourced his fruit from 60 year old vines grown in the vicinity of the Premier CruRefertsvineyard. 2006 was a ripe vintage, and this wine shows opulent fruit aromas; yet on the palate it has a medium body with stony fruit buoyed by fresh acidity and a mineral verve. The finish is persistent, marked with depth and complexity. It is definitely a wine with fine pedigree that is ready to drink now or can be cellared another 4-8 years.
2009 Volnay “Carelle sous la Chapelle” Paul Pernot
Veteran Taste of Burgundy subscribers are beyond acquainted with Paul Pernot and his dazzling array of White Burgundies. We have received a multitude of requests for more of Pernot’s wines to be included in the sampler, but rules are rules. Well, here’s a tidbit of information you might like to hear: Mr. Pernot has some Pinot Noir holdings as well. If that’s not enough, we got our hands on some of Pernot’s single vineyard Volnay from the much lauded 2009 vintage! TheCarelle sous la Chapelle vineyard is Premier Cru, though a few rows of Pernot’s vines lie just outside the border. We reiterate that 2009 was an outstanding vintage for Red Burgundy. The wines are precociously expressive, have great weight, and, according to Pernot, “will age better than people presently think.” This Volnay is a perfect example of aromatic elegance. According to Burghound’s Allen Meadows: “pretty red berry fruit and mineral notes leading to supple, lacy and admirably pure light to medium weight flavors … picture perfect Volnay in character.” – Peter Zavialoff

Xavier Monnot: 2006 Puligny Montrachet

Monday, November 15, 2010 7:42 PM

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, WINE HOUSE! An independent, retail wine store open for 33 years? Now that is something to celebrate. And celebrating we are with spectacular deals-n-steals. The 2006 Puligny Montrachet from Xavier Monnot tops my list of sensational bargains particularly for those who, like me, dream of drinking white BurgundyALL THE TIME. At only $39.95 (originally $70), getting your hands on world-class Chardonnay is no longer just a dream; it can be a reality.

So many reasons to love this wine…let’s begin with the producer:Xavier Monnot. We’ve been singing Monnot’s praises for a couple years now. His ability to coax rich fruit without camouflaging a sense of place is a real talent and a major reason why Monnot’s wines appeal to both those new to white Burgundy and those who have been longtime avid devotees. Our tag line for Monnot’s wines has been that his Puligny tastes like Puligny, his Meursault tastes like Meursault and so on.The grapes that go into Monnot’s Pulingy Montrachet come from 60-year old vines that according to my sources are either below Charmes or Les Referts. Regardless of the exact location, the age of the vines and its placement in Puligny Montrachet provides superior material for some powerhouse Chardonnay. The 2006 Puligny Montrachet is true to the vintage with a ripe, tropical fruit profile. That tropicality and ripeness is buoyed by a stealthily hidden streak of acid that keeps the wine alive and refreshing. A weighty mouthfeel and a persistent finish signals to your tastebuds that they are now entering another realm of Chardonnay goodness. With Dungeness Crab Season in full swing, I can’t help salivating just thinking about pairing this with succulent crab dipped in butter, or better yet, mayonnaise (did I just write that? No, I don’t do that!). At a recent staff tasting, we all agreed that Monnot’s 2006 Puligny Montrachet is the type of white Burgundy that can really go far into a meal; not just relegated to fish and shellfish, it would be outstanding with poultry, pork or veal.

It’s getting crazy at the store now (THE SALE IS ON!), so I better finish this up. But before I do, I have to mention two other tasty treats: 2006 and 2007 Batard Montrachet from Paul Pernot. Come on, treat yourself. The holidays are upon us and you owe it to yourself to try a Grand Cru at least once. I had the pleasure of trying these two wines side by side at our Holiday Staff Dinner this past January. And let me tell you, I think I can still taste them! The 2006 was opulent with lots of volume and power, whereas the 2007 was sleeker and more delineated, though not lacking in fruit. They are strong reflections of their vintage.Thank you to all who have made it possible for us to make it to the thirty-three year mark. As they say in Russian, Many Years Wine House! –Anya Balistreri

A Taste Of Burgundy July/August 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010 7:03 PM



A great way to learn about Burgundy and its wines, and (even better) the perfect way to get a discount on two high quality bottles. Sign up now!

 

Click here to receive the Taste of Burgundy Sampler automatically every other month.

Basic Facts for those of you who are new to the program: Every two months we select two Burgundies, one red and one white. We include write-ups detailing the background of the grower, the vineyard source, and the wine. Finally we knock a significant percentage off the prices of the wines, making the Sampler price $89.98. If you would like us to add you to the Sampler Club and receive the wines regularly, please specify “store pickup” or “ship it” in the comments field, and we will charge your card accordingly. If you would like us to ship faster than the standard ground service, please specify this as well.

2004 Chassagne-Montrachet, Premier Cru Morgeot Vigne Blanche– Chateau de la Maltroye

For Jean-Pierre Cornut, the 2004 vintage was like a blend of 2000 and 2002, both highly esteemed for White Burgundy. The former aeronautical engineer explained that the wines have the fruit of 2000, with the precision and balance of 2002: classic, elegant, and very pure. The Premier Cru Morgeot vineyard lies due south of the village of Chassagne-Montrachet, ideally placed above the mineral-rich deposits of the Cotes du Beaune. The nose sings of rich, pure yellow fruit, a hint of herb garden, and vanilla spice from what Burghound calls stylish oak treatment. The palate is viscous, and of perfect weight and balance as all the components sing in harmony. There is a hint of nuttiness to wrap around the soft yellow/white fruit, braced by the ever-present zippy acidity, which is felt throughout the finish. This wine is showing its very best at this time, and we expect that to last for a few years.

2005 Beaune, Premier Cru Les Toussaints – Domaine Xavier Monnot

The ebullient Xavier Monnot is quite the character. His presence is youthful and light-hearted; but when it comes to his wines, it’s a whole ‘nother story. He is a hands-on kind of winemaker. He works in the vineyards, overseeing every facet of every vine he grows. His mission is to allow the terroir to present itself. This philosophy makes Xavier extremely cautious when it comes to the use of new oak. His wines are pure and speak of a place. His Premier Cru Toussaints vines are grown on a hilltop near another Premier Cru vineyard, Bressandes. Allen Meadows had this to say about this wine, “A relatively deeply pitched nose features ripe cranberry, raspberry and red currants with warm earth and a background hint of underbrush that is also reflected by the fresh, round and supple medium-bodied flavors that are very Beaune in style as there is a certain generosity to the mid-palate … exceptional length. I like the balance here and this could easily be enjoyed now or cellared for 2 to 5 years.” We heartily agree; enjoy!

A TASTE OF BURGUNDY JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2010

Tuesday, February 16, 2010 6:35 PM

A TASTE OF BURGUNDY SAMPLER
$89.98
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A great way to learn about Burgundy and its wines, and (even better) the perfect way to get a discount on two high quality bottles. Sign up now!

 

Click here to receive the Taste of Burgundy Sampler automatically every other month.

Basic Facts for those of you who are new to the program: Every two months we select two Burgundies, one red and one white. We include write-ups detailing the background of the grower, the vineyard source, and the wine. Finally we knock a significant percentage off the prices of the wines, making the Sampler price $89.98. If you would like us to add you to the Sampler Club and receive the wines regularly, please specify “store pickup” or “ship it” in the comments field, and we will charge your card accordingly. If you would like us to ship faster than the standard ground service, please specify this as well.

2006 Meursault – Les Chevalieres Xavier Monnot

When Xavier Monnot visited us a year ago, it would have been easy to take one look at the young man, and assume he may have fallen into the trap of making sexy, modern wines with gratuitous amounts of new oak and extracted fruit. Well, we would have been wrong to assume that. Monnot’s holdings extend for much of the length of the Cotes du Beaune, and judging from the wine he makes, he is true to his respective terroirs. Xavier’s Meursaults are particularly distinctive, and his Les Chevalieres is one of our favorites. The well defined mineral seems to weave itself through subtle notes of honey, peaches, pears, and apricots leaving a refreshing balance of fruit, spice, mineral, and acidity on the finish. This wine is quite quaffable now, but will pick up added complexity with a couple of years in the cellar. Perfect for the waning days of crab season.

2006 Chassagne-Montrachet Rouge 1er Cru Clos du Chateau – Chateau de la Maltroye

The meticulous Jean-Pierre Cornut is insistent on proper vineyard management. His pruning practices can be somewhat unusual, as he controls his yields beginning at the time of flowering. Of his red Chassagne-Montrachets, his Premier Cru Clos du Chateau is his most complex, structured wine. The 2006 isteeming with deep, dark red and purple fruit on the nose that is joined by a deep, earthy richness which binds the fruit to the velvety mouthfeel of the wine. The finish is rich and deep, with more dark fruit, spice, pepper, and earth. It is a bigger styled wine that should begin to soften up in 3-5 years, and then drink well for another 5-10. If you’ve been a member of our Taste of Burgundy Club for a couple of years, you very well may find the 2004 version of this wine in your cellar, therefore combining with this one to make for a mini-vertical! – Peter Zavialoff

2006 Monthelie, Xavier Monnot

Thursday, March 19, 2009 2:21 PM

The saying goes that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is…not this time!A deeply scented, aromatic pinot noir from a dedicated, driven winemaker for $29.95 (on purchases of 6 or more bottles) and it’s B-U-R-G-U-N-D-Y? Yes, it’s true!!! I am so enthralled by this 2006 Monthelie from Monnot, I find it almost too difficult to put down my thoughts. My love affair began with a chance sampling, and then was consummated over an evening just spent smelling it. Not one to restrain myself from kicking back a glass when wine smells this good, the incense-laden/bright fruit aromas kept me from taking a sip. I could not help sticking my nose back into the glass. I just couldn’t get enough of that scent. My delayed gratification did not last for long though, because after all it’s Burgundy and it tastes so good! It is important to point out that even without our special pricing, this stellar Burgundy offers value and is worth every penny.



It just so happened that Xavier Monnot recently visited The Wine House for the second year in a row with his good friend and fellow winemaker Herve Gantier of Domaine Sainte-Eugenie. Witty and serious about wine, Xavier revealed that his Monthelie comes from the single vineyard, Les Sous Courts, which lies right next to Monthelie’s top Premier Cru vineyard, Les Duresses. He confessed to us that he is proud that his wines taste like where they come from: his Volnays taste different from his Beaunes, which taste different from his Monthelies, etc. I could not agree more! Tasting through a range of his wines, you could easily identify the unique regional differences. The heavy-handed imprint of a winemaker is absent. This is not the first time our staff has singled out and featured the wines of Monnot. If you take the time to read over our past reviews, it will become clear that what draws us to Monnot’s wines is the transparency and pureness of fruit. This past Friday, I engaged in a long, passionate discussion with winemaker Mick Unti of Unti Vineyards about how when participating in a comparative wine tasting, it is often the big, showy wines that score highest. We agreed that these wines are indeed impressive, but they are not necessarily the wines we prefer to drink the entire evening. Along these lines, Xavier Monnot is often quoted as saying “I make wines when you drink one glass, you’ll want to finish the bottle”.



TASTING NOTES:


The 2006 Monthelie tastes of concentrated red berries mingled with red earth and gravel. The aromatics are explosive with notes of raspberry, incense and beeswax. Overall, this is an elegant, yet sturdy, pinot noir that is charming and accessible even at this early stage. In fact, I would say this is a wine to drink tonight without any pangs of guilt over drinking it too young.Anya Balistreri

Expression of Burgundy: XAVIER MONNOT

Friday, August 8, 2008 2:23 PM

NOTE: This email is long, but if you find yourself seduced by the wines of Burgundy, it is definitely worth your time.

As the 2005 red Burgundies were arriving, I was doing as we all were, buying all I could afford, but even as I was loading up I kept having these nagging thoughts: “You know you’re going to want 2006’s too.” You’ve seen this happen before. Load up on one great, collectible vintage, then exclude the next one and soon regret it. As one of our most respected customers has said often, “I’ve never regretted a wine I’ve bought, only those I haven’t bought.” Plus, every red Burgundy drinker knows that the most pleasant surprises are the wines from under-hyped vintages that turn out to be glorious 10 or 15 years down the road.

All of this is a roundabout way of saying that the 2006 vintage is filled with beauty and worth your attention. As I tasted through the 2006’s of two dozen growers this past January I was struck by their purity of fruit, and most of all their entrancing aromatic character. I started dubbing ’06 the ‘vintage for the nose’ but that didn’t sound too poetic so I dropped it. However, I would argue that much of the beauty of great Burgundy is in its bouquet and the amazing thing about 2006 is that even the wines that missed something in the flavor department still had lovely, sometimes even compelling aromas. (Don’t worry though, we left those behind anyway!)

Xavier Monnot is a guy who really believes in what he calls “the message of terroir” and he doesn’t just talk the talk. His work in his vineyards, his choice of clones, his pruning techniques, de-budding, how he chooses to re-plant, the very limited influence of new oak on his wines, all are examples of his commitment to the land and to the sincerity of his wines.

Xavier’s reds, tasted less than a week after bottling, showed remarkably well, and I would go so far as to say that they compare extremely favorably to his 2005’s. All offer great value, especially considering the impotent U.S. Dollar. Forexceptional value, you can’t beat his 1er Cru Maranges. This village, or group of villages really, is located at the southern tip of the Cote de Beaune, just below Santenay. Another favorite is the Beaune Toussaints. Xavier’s piece, bordered by the vineyards of Bressandes and Greves, produces a wine of immense charm and length. Oh, and don’t miss the beautifully expressive Volnay Clos des Chenes. This one borders on heroic.

From the top growers, 2006 is a gorgeous, open-armed (I almost said something else, but decided to keep it clean) vintage. I tasted many ’06 whites that were plump and juicy, almost tropical, and which gave tremendous pleasure, even in their infant stage. Monnot’s whites though had something more to them, a restraint and kind of graceful power. Xavier says, “I prefer minerality, purity, and longevity to fatness and richness.” What an impressive lineup here! Favorites? They’re all my favorite! Really, it’s that good a group of wines. I’d have to say though that the two single vineyard (though not 1er Cru) Meursaults, “Le Limozin” and “Les Chevalieres” offer absolutely stunning quality, easily at 1er Cru level. David Netzer

2005 Domaine Xavier Monnot Maranges 1er Cru Clos De La Fussiere

Red Wine; Pinot Noir; Burgundy;
$32.99

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$28.04 per bottle with case discount.

 

The second chance.

What’s so wonderful about this wine? For one thing, from my point of view, I get a second shot at it. I had planned on cellaring this because I enjoyed it out of barrel, and who passes up 2005 1er Cru red Burgundy at around $30? Not me. I stalk wines like this. Six bottles were as good as in my cellar except for the fact that a wholesale account swooped in when my back was turned and took our entire inventory. I remember the day well. I walked past the loading dock and saw a pile of wine. “What’s all the Monnot Maranges doing on the loading dock?” I inquired gently, yet firmly. “We sold it all to *name omitted to protect the semi-innocent*,” was the answer. My jaw dropped. I shook my fist. I howled. But there was nothing to be done. Or was there? Turned out there was still a bit more in France. It arrived in our warehouse last week.



The Xavier Monnot wines are relatively new to us, but we’ve already taken a shine to their verve and intricacy. Monnot’s 2005 red 1er Crus from Beaune and Volnay are notable for their depth and concentration. This is coupled with subtle tannin extraction that avoids any overwrought character brought on by carelessness in vintages of high dry extract. This Maranges is in the same mold except for the fact that it is a 1er Cru monopole for $28.04 with the case discount. Let’s look at that previous sentence. Less than $30 for a 1er Cru? True the Clos de la Fuissiere isn’t Richebourg, but the wine in this bottle is definitely high quality red Burgundy. You folks that were asking for vineyard designate Burgundy under $30 and I kept saying it doesn’t exist, well, I’m happy I’m wrong. For a few days anyway.

This is one of those wines that will slake our thirst for the reds from this vintage in 5 years. It will be hitting its stride when those broad shouldered $70 and up bottles are just beginning to peak out from their structure. It is technically drinkable now in terms of the tannin profile, in that it doesn’t tear the roof of your mouth off, but the wine is more shy now than it was 6 months ago, signaling it is heading off to sleep with the rest of the 05 reds. When we opened it one morning (yes, morning, we’re professionals and therefore allowed to open wine in the morning, it makes our palates stronger) it was reticent, but by the evening when I took it home, the aromatics had arrived, and the palate was just beginning to emerge. The next evening it started to hum, and now I have a nice stash of it in my cellar. So, if you are curious, be patient after you open it, but the best strategy is to be truly patient and wait till the two thousand teens. Besides Burgundy wants bottle bouquet, and the only way to get some of that is to age the wine in bottle.

Maranges is basically an extension of Santenay and the Clos de la Fuissiere is in the sweet spot of the appellation, half way up the hill. Though in normal vintages the wines are more delicate than the Cotes de Nuits powerhouses, 2005 finds it right where you want Burgundy: with concentration and finesse. Kind of like Chambolle Musigny at half the price. The mantra of ‘buy little wines in big vintages’ has never been so appropriate as the relatively obscure Maranges shows well ahead of it’s classification. Who knew that our best value 1er Cru from this vintage would come at the end of the campaign, but I think it is a perfect way to book end a years worth of wines from this outstanding vintage. – Ben Jordan

2005 Domaine Xavier Monnot Maranges 1er Cru Clos De La Fussiere

Red Wine; Pinot Noir; Burgundy;
$32.99

  Add to Cart
$28.04 per bottle with case discount.

 



Tasting Notes

As I said before, the wine was shy when we opened it, but the nose opened nicely with a few hours of coaxing. One trick I employ to get a sneak peak at the aromatics to come is to let the wine sit covered in the glass (we use the base pieces from broken stemware) for a while. When I come back to it, I don’t worry about swirling, just put it to my nose, and I find all sorts of perfume that was hidden by the wine’s youth. This practice brought my first shiver of excitement for this Maranges. Upon later inspection this wine was effusing the aromas without the aid of my trickery, and not to pour another glass for a drunk horse, but I love the magic of aromatics.



‘Cracked cherry’ is a tasting note term I would like to coin. In the same way cracking pepper releases the essence and flavor of the peppercorn, this wine has a snappy, essence of cherry character to it. There is also a ‘fleeting spice-rack’ aspect to the attack. It comes at you when you’re not looking and then runs off in the other direction before you have a chance to really detail it. When that happens to me I write things like ‘sandalwood’ because I don’t know what sandalwood tastes like, and I have a sneaking suspicion that no one else does either. On another level, the finish reminds me of Bordeaux. This may sound odd, but it has that lovely earthen character that sets Bordeaux apart from New World cousins. It is what I think we meant when we used to describe wines as “dry”, not in a sugar sense or in terms of the tannic interaction with the palate, but in terms of the flavor as the fruit finishes. It is both attractive and distinct. This is a sensation that always translates itself into class and poise in my notes. And that’s really what we should say about this wine. Lots of class, and lots of poise.

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