Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Lyle Fass off-brand Burgundies

Had a tasting/dinner with a group of friends recently. Lyle had put together a few off-brand Burgundies to sample, and I provided the de Villaine ($35) and Jadot ($30). 2005 is a vintage that has received tons of hype, such that, almost every producer who can shake off the hang-over and climb out of their cellar can sell their wine. We'll see how long this lasts. On the whole, I'd have to say that the wines showed very well, but let's not get carried away. These are good wines, but they don't dislodge the Chinon, Beaujolais, Bourgueil, and Loire reds that make up the broad base of my French table selections. I'd rather have a 2005 Fleurie from Coudert than any of the Burgundies save the Jadot (see Descombes below).

2005 Vincent Dureuil-Janthial Rully En Guenses

Light and pretty. Missing the mid-palate to be truly interesting. I'd like it to either be a bit gentler or weightier, it seems stuck in the middle. Not bad in a lightweight mold. Only the slightest hint that it is from the red Burgundy hinterlands.

2005 Chateau Genot-Boulanger Mercurey 1er Les Saumonts

A step up in intensity and depth, although not a deep or big wine by any means. Doesn’t have any of the tomato quality that can mar some wines from Mercury. I haven’t had a Genot-Boulanger in a while and this was quite good. Should age well in the short to medium term, but isn’t too young to drink now.

2005 de Villaine Mercury Les Montots

More intense, almost painfully so, if no darker than the above. Linear and razor sharp with really bright and snappy cran-cherry fruit. Plenty of chalky limestone, and fruit pits on the finish. Should be cellared for a few years before drinking. Should age better than Mercury has a right to.

2005 Jadot Savigny les Beaune 1er Dominode

A real step up in quality from the preceding wines and clearly the class wine of the evening. I really like this wine in most vintages and 2005 is another excellent example. Has very deep fruit and a kind of dark minerality that I tend to perceive in Dominode from at least Jadot, Clair, and Pavelot. Adds a nice woodsy-forest element to the mix with a firm and juicy finish. Should be excellent in 5 years and hold for 10-20 more. Seriously. The balance is impeccable.

2005 Domaine Collotte Marsannay Vielles Vignes

Sort of got lost in the shuffle and didn’t make much of an impression.

2005 Domaine Bart Fixin

This was a big surprise for me. I’ve not been a fan of Bart in the past. This wine was delicious, and very 2005. Tons of fruit and tannin, with an intensity to the fruit that overcame the Fixin rusticity. It is sort of like I’d like CA pinot to taste, it’s on that sort of fruity side. This might be one of those wines that if you lose it in the cellar, you could end up with something really surprising in 15 years. Or the fruit could fall out of the middle and it could dry out. Don’t know.

2005 Descombes Brouilly Vielles Vignes

This put everything but the Jadot Dominode into perspective. Great wine.


Joe said...

This blog rocks!

the vlm said...

Thanks "Joe" (if that is your real name).

We're just trying to keep the mob at bay.

We're pursuing an advertising model if you're game.

Bill said...

collotte was a new producer for me this year. i bought a bit of marsanny vv and clos de jeu. also they made a quite good chambolle.especially at a mid 30's price tag.
maybe give the collote stuff another chance sometime.

i like the blog!

Florida Jim said...

"2005 Descombes Brouilly Vielles Vignes"

I hear good things about this producer (even from Lyle); have you tried any of his other bottlings?
Best, Jim

the vlm said...


I've had the whole line-up and found them quite good up and down. This wasn't the case 7 or 8 years ago, but what I've tried from 2005 and 2006 were all very good. The Brouilly is the pick, but others stand up well.

I think you'd like them.

Lyle Fass said...

I love this blog and the fact I am mentioned on it is an honor. Fuck the Times.

The Colotte is a great wine. I bought some. Had it in a resto in NYC and loved it. Bought two and have 'em in the cellar. It's me.

Descombes Brouilly is silly good. His '06 Chiroubles VV is even sillier.

I had a 1990 Brouilly at the estate recently that was dead.

the vlm said...

I feel like I gave the Colette a bit of a short shrift. I'll try it again. Some of the wines are available locally.

I think the Descombes wines have really changed. Remember back when Peter Weygant had them? I thought they were fucked up, so I'm not shocked that older examples are fucked. 1990 isn't a real good test though. I'd like to try some 1991s before I judged for sure.