La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

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La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#1 Post by EricG » March 9th, 2019, 3:01 pm

Some quick notes after the Grand Tasting. Hope others will add their thoughts as well.

Overall, the 2016 vintage is a good one although the wines are a little more closed than what I sampled late last year as my purchases came in.

Best wines of the tasting for me were Liger Belair Clos du Chateau, Mugneret Gibourg Ruchottes, Hudelot Noellat Clos Vougeot, and Hubert Lignier Clos de la Roche. All hit notes of balance or uniqueness that were satisfying.

Highlight of the tasting was meeting Thibaud Clerget. A humble, approachable winemaker who seems to be on the way to greatness. His wines were very enjoyable.

Find of the tasting was Domaine Didier Fornerol. Whole cluster NSG wines that I’m told are reasonably priced. A but Jouan-like on the nose.

I did not taste as many whites but Leflaive was in fine shape. And re-confirmed that I just don’t connect with Jobard’s wines.

Also a nice surprise to have Delamotte/Salon present this year. Glad I bought some of the 2008 Delamotte BdB. It was very good. Of course so was the ‘07 Salon but not earth shattering like 96, 02, etc.

My one disappointment this year was the presence of a couple gentlemen who for some unknown reason thought it was a good idea to wear copious amounts of cologne. And just to be sure we could all smell them, must have reapplied in the men’s room during the event. It was that strong. Had to go smell coffee to clear my nose at one point.

All in all, it was a very good event, with lots of good food all around the room. I may have eaten as much as I drank this year. LOL.

Interested to hear what others thought.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#2 Post by dcornutt » March 9th, 2019, 5:02 pm

Thanks for the notes Eric. Sounds like the usual suspects made great wines. I love Thibaud Clerget (Y Clerget) wines. I think they are going from strength to strength. A big plus is that it is Volnay!
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#3 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 9th, 2019, 8:57 pm

Here is my short cut guide to the 2019 La Paulee Grand Tasting:

Knowing it would be impossible to hit everything, I had a plan and executed it, with Greg Kahn as my unexpected partner for most it and Sh@n A (who I met just before the doors opened) for many of the reds. Most producers tables had 4 wines. I tasted 99 wines in just over 3 hours but was still able to have nice chats with the winemakers or other domaine reps.

Given each of the wines I liked deserved its own meal and patience, not this quick fire tasting, I’m just going to provide a hit list of the highlights in the order tasted, 2016 unless noted, with one, two, or three stars for the best wines in my view. I did not list wines that didn’t do much for me.

I had tasted a few 2016s but was glad to get this snapshot of the vintage. Overall I thought 2016 was a fairly transparent early drinking vintage for whites with a hint of sweetness and sweet perfume but the best showing strong mineral notes and spice with deceptive structure, maybe like a more concentrated 2000. If premox doesn’t rear its head, these will age well, shedding baby fat along the way. Many of the reds are drinking pretty well, not as transparently pure as 2014 or as sized and dense as 2015 but the best will shine with time and many are even drinking well now (but I’d expect them to shut down).

If pushed, for this sampling of producers and wines, I was more impressed with the whites than the reds overall. Whereas there were strong whites at all levels, for the reds the Premier and Grand Crus were a clear step up.

Liger-Belair:
*Vosne Romanee Aux Reignots
**Echezeaux

Mugneret-Gibourg:
*Vosne Romanee
***Ruchottes
**(*)Clos Vougeot

Henri Gouges:
*Clos des Porrets
*Pruliers
*(*)Vaucrains
**(*)Les Saint Georges

Hudelot-Noellat:
(*)Clos Vougeot
*(*)Romanee-Saint-Vivant

Y. Clerget:
**Volnay Caillerets
Clos Vougeot

(Note it was tough to try Hudelot-Noellat and Clerget Clos Vougeot after Mugneret-Gibourg.)

Leflaive:
Puligny Montrachet
(*)Puligny Montrachet Claivoillon
*(*)Puligny Montrachet Pucelles

Antoine and Charlotte Jobard:
*Meursault Poruzots
***Meursault Genevrieres
**(*)Meursault Charmes

Vincent Girardin:
Meursault Genevrieres
Meursault Charmes
*Meursault Perrieres

Bernard Moreau:
Saint-Aubin En Remilly
*Chassagne Montrachet (a lot of 1er Cru in 2016, wines that couldn’t be made on their own, due to frost and thus extremely low yields)
*Chassagne Maltroie

Heitz-Lochardet:
Meursault Perrieres
*Pommard Rugiens

Bachelet-Monnot:
Puligny Montrachet Referts
Puligny Montrachet Folatieres

Marc Morey:
Chassagne Montrachet
*(*)Chassagne Montrachet Morgeot
**(*)Chassagne Montrachet En Virondot
***Puligny Montrachet Pucelles

Blind Tasting with Pascaline Lepeltier:
*2015 Dauvissat Chablis Sechets (very yellow color; guessed Chassagne Premier Cru from a more linear, mineral site)
**2015 Meursault Charmes (I will get the producer - blanking right now; guessed Corton Charlemagne or BBM - had Grand Cru weight)
*2015 Bize Savigny-Les-Beaune Serpentieres (guessed 2015 Côte de Beaune)
*2005 Cathiard Vosne (guessed Chambolle or Morey Premier Cru with a bit of age)

H. Lignier:
*Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Vielle Vignes
*Morey-Saint-Denis Chaffots
***Clos de la Roche

Benjamin Leroux:
Meursault Genevrieres Dessous
**Mazoyeres-Chambertin

Commune de Meursault Table - we had the great luck to try the 17 wines at this table side-by-side with Dominique Lafon for about 20 minutes, during which he showed me where various parcels of the wines we were trying were located on his Burgundy map app:
Henri Germain Meursault
Fichet Meursault Tesson
**Pierre Morey Meursault Tessons
*Darnat Meursault Richemont
Mikulski Meursault Poruzots
**Genot-Boulanger Meursault Boucheres
Michel Bouzereau Meursault Charmes
Xavier Monnot Meursault Charmes
**(*)Latour-Giraud Meursault Genevrieres
**(*)Remi Jobard Meursault Genevrieres

Drouhin:
**(*)Beaune Clos des Mouches (Blanc)
*Chassagne Morgeot Marquis de Laguiche
*Beaune Clos des Mouches (Rouge)
**(*)Chambertin Clos de Beze

Comtes Lafon:
Meursault Charmes

Dominique Lafon:
Beaune Vignes Franches

Henri Boillot:
Meursault Genevrieres
(I wasn’t impressed by the Puligny Clos de la Mouchere, Corton Charlemagne, or Volnay Caillerets - Clerget’s Caillerets was more charming and had better depth and structure)

William Fevre:
*(*)Chablis Bougros Bouguerots
(*)Chablis Clos

Christian Moreau:
*2012 Clos “Clos des Hospices”
*(*)2014 Clos “Clos des Hospices

Lamy-Pillot:
Chassagne “Pot Bois”
*Chassagne Morgeot
Chassagne Boudriotte (Rouge)

I missed the following from my plan because the Blind Tasting was unexpected and took about 20 minutes:

Bouchard Corton Charlemagne
Nicolas Rossignol’s table

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#4 Post by Sh@n A » March 9th, 2019, 10:36 pm

Jayson, what is your ratings code? I will post my notes later, but generally agreed with nearly all your outperformers (on reds). However, it sounds like I'm a bigger fan of this vintage than you!
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#5 Post by R. Frankel » March 10th, 2019, 6:01 am

I’m still collating all my notes, will likely take a few days. La Paulee events, while crowded, remain my favorite big walk around tastings of the year. The food this year was great and readily available in small bites, allowing me to intermix food and drink and keep my palate perky. For the wines, I had a slightly different impression overall - in general I found the reds much stronger than the whites. The reds were very strong, with a lot of consistency.

For Pinot Noir, I view this is a fairly classic vintage, with less sweet rich fruit than 2015, but with (a lot!) more structure. I could see people preferring 2015 or 2016 based on individual taste. The Bourgogne and Village wines could be fairly early drinking but the higher tier wines will take some time to unfold unless you really like tannins. My standouts were similar to others’ to no surprise. Grand Crus from Liger-Belair, Mugneret Gibourg, Hudelot Noellat were wows but their primer crus were very consistent and worth cellaring. Clerget, Gouge and Rossignol were great. I liked H. Boillot’s Volnay.

The whites were, for me, a very mixed bag. Drouhin and H. Boillot were very good. I didn’t find many others that I deeply loved. I started the day with a seminar featuring 2017 Chassagnes (Lamy-Pillot and Bernard Moreau) that were consistent and much more interesting than almost anything from 2016. Btw I went to the Off the Grid event earlier in the week and found quite a few producers I hadn’t encountered before that were worth seeking in the future, mostly from Chablis (Beru, Oudin, Goisot, Cantin) but these were mostly 2015s (with a smattering of other vintages).

I’ll post a mammoth detailed list later in the week with a lot more detail.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#6 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 6:32 am

As usual, I had a great time at the Grand Tasting yesterday. I liked the 2016 vintage. Certainly, not as opulent and showy as the 2015s I have had, it seemed like a very well balance vintage that should age quite well. Overall, there were just a tremendous amount of excellent wines at the tasting, both red and white.

Not unusually for me, my favorite producers of red wines were from Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg. Mugneret-Gibourg is just one of the treasures of Burgundy these days and it is highly unfortunate to me that the prices have gotten so high in the US.

By contrast, given the quality, I think the HN wines are tremendous values in today's market. And, all four of the wines tasted were outstanding. Interestingly, I thought the Clos Vougeot (which was just outstanding) and the village Vosne Romanee (best villages level wine in the room) were really open and expressive while the Vougeot Petite Vougeots and the fabulous Romanee St. Vivant were both more closed when I tasted them. Just a great performance.

My favorite whites overall were from (1) Bernard Moreau (friends and I argued whether the St. Aubin En Remilly or the village CM was the best of their less expensive wines (I went with the St. Aubin)) but we all agreed that all four of these wines were fantastic and I esp. liked the Morgeot (also a favorite in other vintages) and (2) from Leflaive (esp. the PM Clavoillon and the PM Pucelles). IMHO, looking at QPR, the Clavoillon generally is the go to wine in the Leflaive portfolio and it did not at all disappoint yesterday.

One of the things that excited me about yesterday was the number of up and coming estates in Burgundy that were presenting wines and some of my favorites were outstanding. I loved the wines of Clerget. They almost seemed to be made in a style somewhat like Hudelot-Noellat (obviously with different terroir), which to me is very high praise indeed. I think I liked the Clos du Verseuil more than a lot of you did. I found it (which was more elegant) and the Caillerets (which was more powerful) to be more on par with each other. The Clos Vougeot was the star of the table - it was an excellent afternoon for Clos Vougeot. How fun would it be to do a comparison in 15 years of the 2016 Clos Vougeots from Clerget, Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg?

Heitz-Lochardet was another standout performer of the young guns. I esp. liked his Meursault Perrieres and his Pommard Rugiens. Meursault Perrieres is one of my favorite whites in Burgundy, so it is not that surprising that I really liked this one, but I generally am not a huge Pommard fan (at least in comparison with other Burgundy villages) and this held true last year when I visited Heitz and preferred his Volnays to his Pommards. But yesterday, I was really surprised at how good the Rugiens was. It was my favorite of the Pommards I had yesterday and made an excellent case for those wanting to promote Rugiens to Grand Cru.

A third young producer whose wines I very much enjoyed yesterday was Maison MC Thiriet. As I understand it, she is just getting started. She was showing 2017s and this was, I think she said, only her second vintage. And, the appellations tasted were all regional wine. But the wines tasted (both white and red) were really good and I esp. enjoyed her Cote de Nuits Villages Aux Montagnes.

There were a number of other standouts to me. I thought both Bouchard and Drouhin wines were standout. I very much liked the Bouchard Corton Charlemagne (one of the standout whites of the day) and their Volnay Caillerets. At Drouhin, I really liked the CM Morgeot (I have also really been enjoying the 2014 of this wine) and I thought their Clos de Beze may have been the best wine I tasted all day. Really, really long and elegant, this wine has a great future to it. Among other larger producers, I did not find the wines from Jadot to be as good as the wines from Bouchard and Drouhin. And, I was not that crazy about the wines from Boillot. They were good but did not really send me. On the other hand, I really enjoyed Bichot's Echezeaux from the Domaine Clos Frantin. A number of my earliest Burgundies were from the Domaine Clos Frantin and I must admit that I got very nostalgic thinking about drinking these wines. I even discussed with Alberic Bichot my history drinking these wines in the 70s and early 80s with my father. One of my more enjoyable moments of the tasting and one that was almost unrelated to the wine.

I thought the wines of Hubert Lignier were also standouts. I especially enjoyed the MSD Chaffots, although I am sure their Clos de la Roche will be great over time (seemed a bit closed yesterday).

Another real treat was drinking two slightly older wines from Christian Moreau - 2012 and 2014 Chablis les Clos "Clos des Hospices", which were two of my favorite whites of the day.

I liked the wines from Domaine Benjamin Leroux. I have not had their wines previously and I thought they were good, esp. the Mazoyieres Chambertin.

And, finally (although these were my first wines of the day), it was a real treat drinking Champagnes from Delamotte and Salon. The 2007 Salon was of course great, but the 2008 Delamotte was also a real star.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#7 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 10th, 2019, 7:28 am

We could probably compare / contrast for hours and discuss why. Interesting areas of agreement and difference.

I gave M-G Ruchottes and Lignier CdlR three stars because they were surprisingly open and undeniably excellent. When we had the Lignier CdlR, it was singing. I think it was the only wine for which I asked for seconds.

I agree with Howard on Drouhin Beze. I had that after all of the other big gun reds and it was probably the most “serious” wine I tried, the one of all I would say needs plenty of time to show its depth. The most old school to put it another way. Great great potential. And Beaune Mouches next to it was no slouch.

Getting to Christian Moreau as the organizers were literally ripping bottles away from his table to start setting up for the dinner, the interesting difference between the 2014 Clos especially and almost all of the 2016 whites was the extract / phenolic intensity of the 2014 (not to mention it was Clos).

My best conversation other than with Dominique Lafon was at the end of the day with Daniel Cady-Lamy, the commercial director at Lamy-Pillot run by his wife and his wife’s sister. With the event over we got to shoot the breeze for 10 minutes. Great friendly guy.

Also very nice chatting with Marie-Christine Mugneret, Thibauld Clerget, Charles van Canneyt, Bernard Moreau, Eric Germain, Sabine Moillard, and more briefly Charlotte Jobard, Veronique Drouhin, and Guillaume Boillot. We were very lucky to have all of these folks in one room.
Last edited by Jayson Cohen on March 10th, 2019, 8:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#8 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 7:40 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:28 am
We could probably compare / contrast for hours and discuss why. Interesting areas of agreement and difference.

Yes. But, even if each of us went back today to taste the same wines all over again, we would not all have the same favorites. We are drinking 50-100 wines, spitting in many cases, have pours of 1 ounce or less, from different bottles and from bottles that have been opened for different amounts of time.

Having gone to this for now my 7th time, I find that my impressions of producers is more reliable to me (esp. over multiple events) and of the vintage generally are more reliable than are my impressions of any one or two wines. And, I am sure that my impressions of producers and of the vintage are more reliable to me than they are to anyone else as they are based on my taste preferences.

So, I hope the comparing and contrasting has some value to others who were not there. And, I find that over time reading about producers I may have skipped helps me determine whether I should make it a point to taste there next time.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#9 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 10th, 2019, 7:49 am

Yes. Agree. That’s why I consider these just relative flash impresssions. I don’t score wines generally - and here these are just flash impressions on tiny pours.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#10 Post by c fu » March 10th, 2019, 8:55 am

Howard Cooper wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 6:32 am
As usual, I had a great time at the Grand Tasting yesterday. I liked the 2016 vintage. Certainly, not as opulent and showy as the 2015s I have had, it seemed like a very well balance vintage that should age quite well. Overall, there were just a tremendous amount of excellent wines at the tasting, both red and white.

Not unusually for me, my favorite producers of red wines were from Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg. Mugneret-Gibourg is just one of the treasures of Burgundy these days and it is highly unfortunate to me that the prices have gotten so high in the US.

By contrast, given the quality, I think the HN wines are tremendous values in today's market. And, all four of the wines tasted were outstanding. Interestingly, I thought the Clos Vougeot (which was just outstanding) and the village Vosne Romanee (best villages level wine in the room) were really open and expressive while the Vougeot Petite Vougeots and the fabulous Romanee St. Vivant were both more closed when I tasted them. Just a great performance.

My favorite whites overall were from (1) Bernard Moreau (friends and I argued whether the St. Aubin En Remilly or the village CM was the best of their less expensive wines (I went with the St. Aubin)) but we all agreed that all four of these wines were fantastic and I esp. liked the Morgeot (also a favorite in other vintages) and (2) from Leflaive (esp. the PM Clavoillon and the PM Pucelles). IMHO, looking at QPR, the Clavoillon generally is the go to wine in the Leflaive portfolio and it did not at all disappoint yesterday.

One of the things that excited me about yesterday was the number of up and coming estates in Burgundy that were presenting wines and some of my favorites were outstanding. I loved the wines of Clerget. They almost seemed to be made in a style somewhat like Hudelot-Noellat (obviously with different terroir), which to me is very high praise indeed. I think I liked the Clos du Verseuil more than a lot of you did. I found it (which was more elegant) and the Caillerets (which was more powerful) to be more on par with each other. The Clos Vougeot was the star of the table - it was an excellent afternoon for Clos Vougeot. How fun would it be to do a comparison in 15 years of the 2016 Clos Vougeots from Clerget, Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg?

Heitz-Lochardet was another standout performer of the young guns. I esp. liked his Meursault Perrieres and his Pommard Rugiens. Meursault Perrieres is one of my favorite whites in Burgundy, so it is not that surprising that I really liked this one, but I generally am not a huge Pommard fan (at least in comparison with other Burgundy villages) and this held true last year when I visited Heitz and preferred his Volnays to his Pommards. But yesterday, I was really surprised at how good the Rugiens was. It was my favorite of the Pommards I had yesterday and made an excellent case for those wanting to promote Rugiens to Grand Cru.

A third young producer whose wines I very much enjoyed yesterday was Maison MC Thiriet. As I understand it, she is just getting started. She was showing 2017s and this was, I think she said, only her second vintage. And, the appellations tasted were all regional wine. But the wines tasted (both white and red) were really good and I esp. enjoyed her Cote de Nuits Villages Aux Montagnes.

There were a number of other standouts to me. I thought both Bouchard and Drouhin wines were standout. I very much liked the Bouchard Corton Charlemagne (one of the standout whites of the day) and their Volnay Caillerets. At Drouhin, I really liked the CM Morgeot (I have also really been enjoying the 2014 of this wine) and I thought their Clos de Beze may have been the best wine I tasted all day. Really, really long and elegant, this wine has a great future to it. Among other larger producers, I did not find the wines from Jadot to be as good as the wines from Bouchard and Drouhin. And, I was not that crazy about the wines from Boillot. They were good but did not really send me. On the other hand, I really enjoyed Bichot's Echezeaux from the Domaine Clos Frantin. A number of my earliest Burgundies were from the Domaine Clos Frantin and I must admit that I got very nostalgic thinking about drinking these wines. I even discussed with Alberic Bichot my history drinking these wines in the 70s and early 80s with my father. One of my more enjoyable moments of the tasting and one that was almost unrelated to the wine.

I thought the wines of Hubert Lignier were also standouts. I especially enjoyed the MSD Chaffots, although I am sure their Clos de la Roche will be great over time (seemed a bit closed yesterday).

Another real treat was drinking two slightly older wines from Christian Moreau - 2012 and 2014 Chablis les Clos "Clos des Hospices", which were two of my favorite whites of the day.

I liked the wines from Domaine Benjamin Leroux. I have not had their wines previously and I thought they were good, esp. the Mazoyieres Chambertin.

And, finally (although these were my first wines of the day), it was a real treat drinking Champagnes from Delamotte and Salon. The 2007 Salon was of course great, but the 2008 Delamotte was also a real star.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#11 Post by Alan Rath » March 10th, 2019, 9:24 am

If anyone had conversations with producers about the contrast between 16 and 17, especially reds, I'd be very interested in hearing the general comments.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#12 Post by Sh@n A » March 10th, 2019, 9:32 am

Not an answer to your question about 2017s, but Bichot did take the view he was very excited to see 2018s (reds) because he think they will surprise folks. He didn’t quite say it would be as good as 2016, but he wasn’t absolutely ruling it out.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#13 Post by Mich@el Ch@ng » March 10th, 2019, 10:08 am

I talked to Thomas Dinel from Marchand Tawse about them and he said that 17 was a very high quality vintage in his opinion with drastically higher yields compared to 16 but no significant drop off in quality.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#14 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 11:09 am

c fu wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 8:55 am
Howard Cooper wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 6:32 am
As usual, I had a great time at the Grand Tasting yesterday. I liked the 2016 vintage. Certainly, not as opulent and showy as the 2015s I have had, it seemed like a very well balance vintage that should age quite well. Overall, there were just a tremendous amount of excellent wines at the tasting, both red and white.

Not unusually for me, my favorite producers of red wines were from Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg. Mugneret-Gibourg is just one of the treasures of Burgundy these days and it is highly unfortunate to me that the prices have gotten so high in the US.

By contrast, given the quality, I think the HN wines are tremendous values in today's market. And, all four of the wines tasted were outstanding. Interestingly, I thought the Clos Vougeot (which was just outstanding) and the village Vosne Romanee (best villages level wine in the room) were really open and expressive while the Vougeot Petite Vougeots and the fabulous Romanee St. Vivant were both more closed when I tasted them. Just a great performance.

My favorite whites overall were from (1) Bernard Moreau (friends and I argued whether the St. Aubin En Remilly or the village CM was the best of their less expensive wines (I went with the St. Aubin)) but we all agreed that all four of these wines were fantastic and I esp. liked the Morgeot (also a favorite in other vintages) and (2) from Leflaive (esp. the PM Clavoillon and the PM Pucelles). IMHO, looking at QPR, the Clavoillon generally is the go to wine in the Leflaive portfolio and it did not at all disappoint yesterday.

One of the things that excited me about yesterday was the number of up and coming estates in Burgundy that were presenting wines and some of my favorites were outstanding. I loved the wines of Clerget. They almost seemed to be made in a style somewhat like Hudelot-Noellat (obviously with different terroir), which to me is very high praise indeed. I think I liked the Clos du Verseuil more than a lot of you did. I found it (which was more elegant) and the Caillerets (which was more powerful) to be more on par with each other. The Clos Vougeot was the star of the table - it was an excellent afternoon for Clos Vougeot. How fun would it be to do a comparison in 15 years of the 2016 Clos Vougeots from Clerget, Hudelot-Noellat and Mugneret-Gibourg?

Heitz-Lochardet was another standout performer of the young guns. I esp. liked his Meursault Perrieres and his Pommard Rugiens. Meursault Perrieres is one of my favorite whites in Burgundy, so it is not that surprising that I really liked this one, but I generally am not a huge Pommard fan (at least in comparison with other Burgundy villages) and this held true last year when I visited Heitz and preferred his Volnays to his Pommards. But yesterday, I was really surprised at how good the Rugiens was. It was my favorite of the Pommards I had yesterday and made an excellent case for those wanting to promote Rugiens to Grand Cru.

A third young producer whose wines I very much enjoyed yesterday was Maison MC Thiriet. As I understand it, she is just getting started. She was showing 2017s and this was, I think she said, only her second vintage. And, the appellations tasted were all regional wine. But the wines tasted (both white and red) were really good and I esp. enjoyed her Cote de Nuits Villages Aux Montagnes.

There were a number of other standouts to me. I thought both Bouchard and Drouhin wines were standout. I very much liked the Bouchard Corton Charlemagne (one of the standout whites of the day) and their Volnay Caillerets. At Drouhin, I really liked the CM Morgeot (I have also really been enjoying the 2014 of this wine) and I thought their Clos de Beze may have been the best wine I tasted all day. Really, really long and elegant, this wine has a great future to it. Among other larger producers, I did not find the wines from Jadot to be as good as the wines from Bouchard and Drouhin. And, I was not that crazy about the wines from Boillot. They were good but did not really send me. On the other hand, I really enjoyed Bichot's Echezeaux from the Domaine Clos Frantin. A number of my earliest Burgundies were from the Domaine Clos Frantin and I must admit that I got very nostalgic thinking about drinking these wines. I even discussed with Alberic Bichot my history drinking these wines in the 70s and early 80s with my father. One of my more enjoyable moments of the tasting and one that was almost unrelated to the wine.

I thought the wines of Hubert Lignier were also standouts. I especially enjoyed the MSD Chaffots, although I am sure their Clos de la Roche will be great over time (seemed a bit closed yesterday).

Another real treat was drinking two slightly older wines from Christian Moreau - 2012 and 2014 Chablis les Clos "Clos des Hospices", which were two of my favorite whites of the day.

I liked the wines from Domaine Benjamin Leroux. I have not had their wines previously and I thought they were good, esp. the Mazoyieres Chambertin.

And, finally (although these were my first wines of the day), it was a real treat drinking Champagnes from Delamotte and Salon. The 2007 Salon was of course great, but the 2008 Delamotte was also a real star.
Clerget worked at noellat for a bit before starting back up the family winery.
Thanks. I knew that (I think he also worked at Domaine Drouhin in Oregon) and should have mentioned that when I noted the bit of similarity in style.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#15 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 11:10 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:49 am
Yes. Agree. That’s why I consider these just relative flash impresssions. I don’t score wines generally - and here these are just flash impressions on tiny pours.
Yes. I have no idea how anyone could give scores to the wines we had yesterday afternoon.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#16 Post by R. Frankel » March 10th, 2019, 11:51 am

Howard Cooper wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 11:10 am
Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:49 am
Yes. Agree. That’s why I consider these just relative flash impresssions. I don’t score wines generally - and here these are just flash impressions on tiny pours.
Yes. I have no idea how anyone could give scores to the wines we had yesterday afternoon.
Agreed, though in general I have a rough time with scoring. For a session like yesterday’s, I roughly have just a few gradations - odd/weak, ok, good, very good, omgwow. And Howard I agree with your notion that this is most valuable for producer/vintage assessment. Sadly most of my omgwows are out of my price range (e.g. Drouhin Clos de Beze and Hudelot Noellat RSV).
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#17 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 12:01 pm

R. Frankel wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 11:51 am
Howard Cooper wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 11:10 am
Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:49 am
Yes. Agree. That’s why I consider these just relative flash impresssions. I don’t score wines generally - and here these are just flash impressions on tiny pours.
Yes. I have no idea how anyone could give scores to the wines we had yesterday afternoon.
Agreed, though in general I have a rough time with scoring. For a session like yesterday’s, I roughly have just a few gradations - odd/weak, ok, good, very good, omgwow. And Howard I agree with your notion that this is most valuable for producer/vintage assessment. Sadly most of my omgwows are out of my price range (e.g. Drouhin Clos de Beze and Hudelot Noellat RSV).
Probably my go to list of wines from yesterday for $100 or less would include:

Hudelot-Noellat - Vosne Romanee and Vougeot Petite Vougeot
Christian Moreau - Chablis les Clos
Heitz-Lochardet - Meursault Perrieres
Bernard Moreau - all of his wines
Bouchard - Volnay Caillerets
Clerget - Volnay Clos du Verseuil and Caillerets (if it still is under $100)
Drouhin - CM Morgeots
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#18 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 10th, 2019, 12:06 pm

R. Frankel wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 6:01 am
I’m still collating all my notes, will likely take a few days. La Paulee events, while crowded, remain my favorite big walk around tastings of the year. The food this year was great and readily available in small bites, allowing me to intermix food and drink and keep my palate perky. For the wines, I had a slightly different impression overall - in general I found the reds much stronger than the whites. The reds were very strong, with a lot of consistency.

For Pinot Noir, I view this is a fairly classic vintage, with less sweet rich fruit than 2015, but with (a lot!) more structure. I could see people preferring 2015 or 2016 based on individual taste. The Bourgogne and Village wines could be fairly early drinking but the higher tier wines will take some time to unfold unless you really like tannins. My standouts were similar to others’ to no surprise. Grand Crus from Liger-Belair, Mugneret Gibourg, Hudelot Noellat were wows but their primer crus were very consistent and worth cellaring. Clerget, Gouge and Rossignol were great. I liked H. Boillot’s Volnay.

The whites were, for me, a very mixed bag. Drouhin and H. Boillot were very good. I didn’t find many others that I deeply loved. I started the day with a seminar featuring 2017 Chassagnes (Lamy-Pillot and Bernard Moreau) that were consistent and much more interesting than almost anything from 2016. Btw I went to the Off the Grid event earlier in the week and found quite a few producers I hadn’t encountered before that were worth seeking in the future, mostly from Chablis (Beru, Oudin, Goisot, Cantin) but these were mostly 2015s (with a smattering of other vintages).

I’ll post a mammoth detailed list later in the week with a lot more detail.
Goisot has had a long track record of making good long-lived wines with (so far) great QPR. I think they are in St. Bris or thereabouts outside Chablis proper.

Have seen some hype on Beru and have been interested in trying. Will keep a look out.

On 2016 versus 2017, I’m curious to see. I do think it was good to drink 2016 on its own, esp. in white, because although I enjoyed them more than you did apparently, they could be lost in comparison to bigger vintages. Bernard Moreau said picking date per parcel in 2016 was critical because with very low fruit per vine and small berries, the sugar-acid balance changed very rapidly at harvest time. He said it took a lot of vigilance at harvest to get this right.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#19 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 10th, 2019, 12:11 pm

Howard, to put your list in context, which growers didn’t you taste? And did you taste at the Commune de Meursault table?

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#20 Post by Mike C. » March 10th, 2019, 3:07 pm

Not Howard, but I unfortunately didn't try the Commune de Meursault table until the very end when they started closing up bottles and then was only able to run through a handful as they were being closed. Seemed like good stuff for their price point.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#21 Post by Howard Cooper » March 10th, 2019, 3:53 pm

Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 12:11 pm
Howard, to put your list in context, which growers didn’t you taste? And did you taste at the Commune de Meursault table?
I can say that I did not taste at the Commune de Meursault table but would have to spend time figuring out where else I did not taste. I know I did not taste any Beaujolais, for example, as I am not a big enough fan of Beaujolais to have spent time tasting those.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#22 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 10th, 2019, 5:20 pm

Mike C. wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 3:07 pm
Not Howard, but I unfortunately didn't try the Commune de Meursault table until the very end when they started closing up bottles and then was only able to run through a handful as they were being closed. Seemed like good stuff for their price point.
That was a great table. No crowd and much less (i.e., not) regulated by the very gregarious somm. And some of the best whites I tasted.

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#23 Post by Greg K » March 10th, 2019, 9:23 pm

As per Jason's note, I tasted with him and with Shan. I also thought Lignier's Clos de la Roche was phenomenal and surprisingly open now. The nose on the Hudellot-Noellat RSV was spectacular (I had asked for the Vosne first and was given the RSV so was ready to rush out and buy cases of the village [berserker.gif] ).

I hadn't had Marc Morey before and was impressed. Was disappointed by Leflaive (not that it matters) and definitely enjoyed some of the bottles at the Meursault table, which are also good value. Which is fortunate since I think the vintage is better for Meursault than Puligny.

I didn't really like the first two Clerget wines but liked the Cailleret quite a bit. Given the variance of the producers I tasted and their holdings, I don't think I can really make a meaningful stab at describing the vintage.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#24 Post by Greg K » March 10th, 2019, 9:24 pm

Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 5:20 pm
Mike C. wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 3:07 pm
Not Howard, but I unfortunately didn't try the Commune de Meursault table until the very end when they started closing up bottles and then was only able to run through a handful as they were being closed. Seemed like good stuff for their price point.
That was a great table. No crowd and much less (i.e., not) regulated by the very gregarious somm. And some of the best whites I tasted.
He let us pour, which was very convenient! Also fun to take a picture with Lafon [cheers.gif]
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#25 Post by Robert Grenley » March 11th, 2019, 12:33 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:28 am
We could probably compare / contrast for hours and discuss why. Interesting areas of agreement and difference.

I gave M-G Ruchottes and Lignier CdlR three stars because they were surprisingly open and undeniably excellent. When we had the Lignier CdlR, it was singing. I think it was the only wine for which I asked for seconds.

I agree with Howard on Drouhin Beze. I had that after all of the other big gun reds and it was probably the most “serious” wine I tried, the one of all I would say needs plenty of time to show its depth. The most old school to put it another way. Great great potential. And Beaune Mouches next to it was no slouch.

Getting to Christian Moreau as the organizers were literally ripping bottles away from his table to start setting up for the dinner, the interesting difference between the 2014 Clos especially and almost all of the 2016 whites was the extract / phenolic intensity of the 2014 (not to mention it was Clos).

My best conversation other than with Dominique Lafon was at the end of the day with Daniel Cady-Lamy, the commercial director at Lamy-Pillot run by his wife and his wife’s sister. With the event over we got to shoot the breeze for 10 minutes. Great friendly guy.

Also very nice chatting with Marie-Christine Mugneret, Thibauld Clerget, Charles van Canneyt, Bernard Moreau, Eric Germain, Sabine Moillard, and more briefly Charlotte Jobard, Veronique Drouhin, and Guillaume Boillot. We were very lucky to have all of these folks in one room.
Having now had 2 premoxed bottles in a row of my Christian Moreau Clos, it has me wondering about my bottles of 2014 Clos. Glad to hear that the 14’s were quite good, but I wonder if I need to consume them before they are 5-6 years of age or age them normally and just resign myself to pouring some percentage of them down the drain.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#26 Post by Jayson Cohen » March 11th, 2019, 5:36 am

Robert Grenley wrote:
March 11th, 2019, 12:33 am
Jayson Cohen wrote:
March 10th, 2019, 7:28 am
We could probably compare / contrast for hours and discuss why. Interesting areas of agreement and difference.

I gave M-G Ruchottes and Lignier CdlR three stars because they were surprisingly open and undeniably excellent. When we had the Lignier CdlR, it was singing. I think it was the only wine for which I asked for seconds.

I agree with Howard on Drouhin Beze. I had that after all of the other big gun reds and it was probably the most “serious” wine I tried, the one of all I would say needs plenty of time to show its depth. The most old school to put it another way. Great great potential. And Beaune Mouches next to it was no slouch.

Getting to Christian Moreau as the organizers were literally ripping bottles away from his table to start setting up for the dinner, the interesting difference between the 2014 Clos especially and almost all of the 2016 whites was the extract / phenolic intensity of the 2014 (not to mention it was Clos).

My best conversation other than with Dominique Lafon was at the end of the day with Daniel Cady-Lamy, the commercial director at Lamy-Pillot run by his wife and his wife’s sister. With the event over we got to shoot the breeze for 10 minutes. Great friendly guy.

Also very nice chatting with Marie-Christine Mugneret, Thibauld Clerget, Charles van Canneyt, Bernard Moreau, Eric Germain, Sabine Moillard, and more briefly Charlotte Jobard, Veronique Drouhin, and Guillaume Boillot. We were very lucky to have all of these folks in one room.
Having now had 2 premoxed bottles in a row of my Christian Moreau Clos, it has me wondering about my bottles of 2014 Clos. Glad to hear that the 14’s were quite good, but I wonder if I need to consume them before they are 5-6 years of age or age them normally and just resign myself to pouring some percentage of them down the drain.
This was from magnum. Who knows if that makes a difference?!

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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#27 Post by Howard Cooper » March 11th, 2019, 5:36 am

Robert Grenley wrote:
March 11th, 2019, 12:33 am


Having now had 2 premoxed bottles in a row of my Christian Moreau Clos, it has me wondering about my bottles of 2014 Clos. Glad to hear that the 14’s were quite good, but I wonder if I need to consume them before they are 5-6 years of age or age them normally and just resign myself to pouring some percentage of them down the drain.
I have only one data point of Moreau's Clos with a decent amount of age, which is that I had a 2010 this past year that was in great shape. I have no idea what aging white Burgundies "normally" means anymore and would not age any white Burgundies too long anymore.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#28 Post by Robert Grenley » March 11th, 2019, 10:20 am

Sorry, I neglected to mention what vintage of Christian Moreau Clos...it was the 2010 in the case of both premoxed bottles opened over the past few months. In light of the vintage I was surprised. That is why I am eyeing the 4 bottles of 2014 suspiciously, and it always raises the question of whether to drink them early or age them as one would in pre-plague times and take one’s chances. Sounds like the 2014 is drinking well, and so drinking them over the next few months would be safest.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#29 Post by Robert Grenley » March 11th, 2019, 10:26 am

I should also mention that we had a tasting of Chablis several years ago, and I loved the 2004 CM Clos so much, in fact it showed better than the 2004 Dauvissat Clos and Preuses to my taste, that I bemoaned that it was my last bottle and searched a couple more out. When I drank them a couple years ago, they were advanced. Just to point out that CM is not one of those producers that is relatively spared. But a 2004 Raveneau Butteaux tasted a couple of weeks ago was advanced...not overtly premoxed, but dark in color and somewhat advanced, and that is a producer that is supposed to be relatively spared, so maybe I just have bad luck!
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#30 Post by Matt K » March 12th, 2019, 11:07 am

Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences, for those of us a little farther away and not able to travel in/access the tasting it's always nice to read such thorough write-ups.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#31 Post by R. Frankel » March 12th, 2019, 2:17 pm

Instead of posting all my notes (which is perhaps a not so useful wall of text), I thought I'd just add a few more notes to grow the discussion. The absolute great producers have already been covered fairly well. Details on a couple who haven't below, but keep in mind these notes are necessarily brief given the format. I tasted over a 100 wines in 4 hours ...

The format is pretty rough - each producer shows four wines. For Drouhin, that meant two whites and two reds (and I loved them all) but this is a teeny fraction of their entire range. For smaller producers they pretty consistently showed from Bourgognes up to Grand Crus, so that leads me to think this is a good representation of their wines. While I always look for new producers (at least to me) to get to know and hope they'll be good, this year I was frequently disappointed. A few (Duband, Zito) surprised me with how relatively weak they were. Some showed well but didn't inspire me to rush out and buy them (Gerard Julien, Nicolas Rossignol) though these two are on my "keep on eye on for the future" list.

Benjamin Leroux - reds much stronger than the whites.
Saint Romain Sous le Chateau 2016- tasty, short
Meursault 1er Genevrieres Dessous 2016 - short finish, nice nutty lemon, but lacking depth
Vosne-Romanee 2016 red fruit nose, good strength on palate, tasty, long, well balanced. This will be quite good.
Mazoyeres-Chambertin GC 2016 - ++intensity and length, tannic, big beautiful. V. Good.

Domaine Henri Gouges - true to reputation these were all highly structured but they are beautifully balanced and crammed with dark fruit. I will likely buy these but am concerned about how long they will take to come around.
Nuits-Saint-George 1er Clos des Porres Saint Georges 2016 - n. Dark fruit, p. Intense, long, structured, good+
Nuits-Saint-George 1er Pruliers 2016 - closed but very concentrated, balanced, structured.
Nuits-Saint-George 1er Les Vaucrains 2016 - n. + fruit, p. + structure peppery finish, nice balance
Nuits-Saint-George 1er Les Saint George 2016 - burly, intense, dark fruit spiced nose, very intense palate, good balance, lots of tannins, needs food. Excellent, wow.
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Re: La Paulee 2019 - Grand Tasting Impressions

#32 Post by Sh@n A » March 17th, 2019, 9:36 pm

I'm a bit late here, but some notes I had:

Heitz-Lochardet: Big fan of the Pommard Rugiens (and it looks like I'm the only one who bought any from HDH after the Grand Tasting!). This was the earthy Burgundy that I love. Nose of red cherry, earth. Smooth fruit on the palate. Light, delicate fruit with grippy tannin. Overall I would characterize this as a memorable wine for delicate red fruit power and strong earthiness (what some others may call a mushroom note on the nose). Much preferred the density and pour of the Rugiens over the Clos des Poutures.

Drouhin: Beaune Clos des Mouches was enjoyable, but I preferred the Heitz-Lochardet for same price. The Mouches here had more density fruit on the nose than the Heitz, with black and red raspberry and mushroom. Palate did not feel as refined as the Heitz-Lochardet. The Close de Beze was really nice... really nice... but $500 is too rich for me so I didn't take notes... I vaguely recall bright and sweet blue and red fruit.. and thinking it needed many years.

Jadot: I liked the Boudots, probably more than Drouhin Clos de Mouches and not as much as the H-N Pommard Rugiens. Very few bottles of this on CT.'

Benjamin Leroux: I thought the Mazoyeres Chambertin was a top performer of the night for me. Brambly and stony raspberry, cherry and plum. A bit thick and monotone with the fruit, but the brambly and earthy dark fruit made this really interesting. Wasn’t sweet or cloying, felt balanced. I suspected I found the “value” buy of the night, < $200, but only one offering for $250 + shipping nicks that idea. Prior vintages are like $150, so I'm tempted to try an "off vintage". As I type this, it was a better version of the Bouchard La Mouse, although drank far apart.. both are brambly plummy fruit. The Vosne Romanee was not memorable, and thus at $85 not great value to me.

Bouchard: Against stronger competition, the Clos de la Mouse did not represent as well. Earth and plum, but a bit thin it felt versus others on the night. The Benjamin Leroux Mazoyeres was a much better wine in a similar sphere (dark plum/earthy) but is 5x the price. Clos de la Mouse still decent QPR here for $49.

Nicholas Rossignol: I preferred the Pommard most out of the wines. The Cailleret was also good, but I think the Clerget took edge for his version. The Santenots lost to the Cailleret for me, albeit such different styles. The Pommard was dark raspberry and earthy. Not as earthy or light as the Heitz; less nuanced but still good. 2016 Pommard was a blend of all single vineyards due to frost damage

Clerget: Standout here was the Caillerets and the 27 year old winemaker. I preferred the Caillerets over the Versuil and Clos Vougeot. This wine wasn’t good enough to be “wow top wine of the night”, but “hey this is really great volnay, and I typically don't like volnay".

Bichot: I tasted this relatively late. These wines were very good. Maybe they were just more approachable? The Chateau Gris is solid, but unspectacular for $80. The two favorites here… with favorite to the latter were the Corton Grand Cru Clos des Marechaudes and the Echezauex Grand Cru. The Marcechaudes had more rounded fruit, a bit flat… but so approachable. I went back to Echezeuax a couple times, and in retrospect wonder how it would taste at beginning of the night vs. having after 2-3 hours of tasting.

Gerard Julien: These wines did not impress. The Les Bousselots was the best wine of the line up, but felt a little thin and lacking to me.

Gouges: Les Saint Georges is heads above the rest of the selection here. The Porrets was OK, the Pruliers was a step ahead. Interestingly, the Pruliers 2016 to me was levels ahead of aged Pruliers I have in past vintages; I think this a testament to the quality of the wine making and how things have improved over the past 15 years... but I'm new here. Vaucrains was a bit closed to me and I preferred the Pruliers. And then boom, the LSG has it all. Dark brambly fruit without rustic or being overly dense. I'm new here, but I remember paying $125 for LSG...

Duband: His NSG felt closed down/muted. The Gevrey were a step ahead IMHO. However, the Gevrey did edge slightly too sweet. These were not sweet wines or overripe.. just slightly sweet. The Gevrey village was sweeter and softer than the NSG. The standout here was the Charmes. Think dark blueberry and black cherry more so than plum. A nice blueberry note, but adds a little sweetness that other wines did not have. Would be curious to put this next to Arlaud's Charmes and see who wins… I suspect Arlaud, but it may be close.

Hudelot-Noellat: I really like the house style. It is fresher and more red berried than other producers, but slightly sweet, slightly earthy…. Really hits on the palate what I like in a lot of burgundy noses. Vougeouts were nice, but Mugneret Gibourg sister’s Vougeot was best of show. The RSV at $800 is quite nice but out of range. I wish I could have tried Suchots and Chambolle. Or give him some more Chambolle vineyards to work with.

Mugneret Gibourg: Did not like the NSG showing of Chaignots, maybe closed, but didn’t pop as much as the others. The Vosne Romanee village was good. $50 in Europe makes sense, $140 at Crush makes no sense. The Ruchottes was a clear step ahead. I expected this to my favorite. And then boom... Clos Vougeot... to me this was the best wine of their line up and perhaps the best Clos Vougeot I’ve ever had. High toned red fruit done well. I can see this being a “$500 wine” as it was up there with Hudelot-Noellat RSV. Turns out both of those are $800.. so silly me.

Comte Liger-Belair: By far the best estate of the night. These wines had everything in perfect balance… tannin, fruit, and acid… and this structure that just felt so organized… couldn’t come up with a flaw in the little pour that you got. Reignots was #1. But the one I thought was down the fairway for me was monopole Clos du Chateau... unfortunately $1200 at Cultwine…... at CT price of $250, I would definitely pay that if I could. Vinous only gave it 87-88?? Vosne Romanee La Colombiere was not as memorable as the Clos du Chateau and I can’t remember it…. but that's only $1,000 at Cultwine. Reignots was better than Echezeaux.

Hubert Lignier: Kind of as one would expect, Roche was my favorite of the line up, followed by the MSD VV. I initially preferred the MSD VV finding the Roche to be too closed... by end of the night I was going back for the Roche and not the MSD VV.
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