2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

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2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#1 Post by Don Cornwell » February 15th, 2020, 2:15 am

On Thursday March 14, 2019 fourteen of us gathered at Drago Centro Restaurant in downtown Los Angeles for the second night of the 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment and Oxidation Check dinners. 2019 was our 14th year of holding these dinners. As usual, we tasted the vintage then 7.5 years from the date of harvest. We usually taste 60 to 75 of the top wines from the vintage over the course of three nights.

On night two we tasted twenty-nine wines mostly from the hyphenated grand cru vineyards of Bienvenues and Criots-Batard Montrachet, Batard Montrachet and Chevalier Montrachet. We also included two ringers (which I enjoy trying to select to be educational, but as undetectable as possible.) As usual, all of the wines were served single blind (with ringers being double blind), and all voting was completely blind by bottle number with the reveal at the end of the evening.

Sommelier Paul Sherman, who was formerly the wine director at Valentino, where many of our past dinners took place, was again present at Drago Centro to orchestrate everything, along with help from Drago’s Somm Fabio Lai.

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The View from the outside of the “Vault Room” at Drago Centro

This dinner was held in the former vault room of national bank located in downtown Los Angeles, which is now part of Drago Centro restaurant. It has its own separate event kitchen. Paul Sherman got the room configured for our second dinner with its huge number of stems with lots of working space in front of us. In this photo, the view is taken at the end of the night from outside the room after we’ve unbagged all of the wines and they were lined up along the counter.

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Here’s a view of all of us ‘hard at work’ as we evaluated the first flight of wines from Bienvenues and Criots Batard Montrachet. That’s me with my nose buried in a glass.

CHAMPAGNE AND APPETIZERS

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2004 Vilmart Coeur de Cuvee (2 bottles)
Very light gold color; light peach and citrus aromas; fairly light, creamy texture with minerals; this is a very subtle, citrus and mineral infused champagne; the finish just sort of trails off. This seemed very different than the 2002 vintage of Vilmart Coeur de Cuvee that I had, which I remember as much more powerful with a central core of minerals. Both bottles of the 2004 were similar. Not what I expected. 92

FLIGHT ONE: CRIOTS AND BBM

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Jumbo Scallops Crudo, potato cream, onion jello and truffles

0 [2011 Leflaive Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; light green apple and white flowers aromas; elegant light pear and green apple flavors with a wonderful sweet fruit and minerals finish. Impressive BBM. Three votes for best in flight. A couple of late changes meant we ended up with nine wines for this flight -- and still had one more BBM in flight two. (N.B. This was clearly the best Leflaive BBM we’ve had since the 2005 vintage and all three 2011 Leflaives showed well in this dinner.) Group Rank: Tenth, 6 points (0/0/1/0/3) 94

1 [2011 Sauzet Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; classic honeysuckle aromas; medium weight elegant pear and green apple flavors; sweet fruit and mineral finish. Very nice, but not as good as No. 0. One taster initially thought this was “skunky.” I took a while to get to it, and I didn’t detect anything. One vote for best in flight. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 93

2 [2011 Jacques Carillon Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light white gold color; closed a bit at first, this developed beautiful white flowers aromas; also initially restrained on the palate, with more air this developed incredibly elegant sweet citrus flavors and a layered impression; lots of minerality here; this just kept getting better and better. Seven votes for best in flight. My No. 6 wine of the night, and it was tough to leave it out of the top five. Group Rank: 4th, 16 points (0/1/2/2/2) 94

3 [2011 Henri Boillot Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; light green apple and white flowers aromas; this initially exhibited a light bodied flavor profile but with more air it definitely seemed to increase in depth and improved in the glass; there was some moderate minerality on the finish. One vote for best in flight. Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 93

4 [2011 Colin-Morey Bienvenues Batard Montrachet
Light gold color; white flowers and honeysuckle aromas; light sweet green apple and citrus flavors that just kept improving with air. One vote for best in flight. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 93+

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Paul Sherman pouring a flight of wines

5 [2011 Hubert Lamy Criots Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; another classical honeysuckle aroma but also has some SO2 there – but later this developed a cardboard element in the aromas; Liz Lee initially said it’s corked and I think she’s right; others thought this was some kind of chemical flaw instead of being corked – I think partly because it wasn’t immediately obvious when the bottle was poured; the wine was very light on the palate, but as with most corked bottles you couldn’t get past the aromas. The consensus was this is chemically flawed but three of us thought it was corked. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) DQ - corked

6 [2011 Jadot Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; a very sappy, wood resin type aroma, reminiscent of turpentine; there was some relatively rich fruit flavor on the palate initially, but it had a very sharp, bitter edge and was notably woody. Something seems to have gone horribly wrong here from a chemical perspective. Consensus: chemically off. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) DQ – chemically off

7 [2011 Pernot Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
This has the darkest color of this flight, but is still only medium gold color; some apricot aromas (clearly advanced); rich apricot and apple flavors on the palate. This is still drinkable, if you don’t mind apricot in your Bienvenues (but I do). Everyone agreed that this was either advanced or oxidized. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 91-Advanaced

8 [2011 Colin-Morey Criots- Batard Montrachet]
Light white gold color; light citrus and white flowers aromas; medium plus weight pear fruit flavors and some real mineral impact – this exhibits more weight/gravitas than I would have expected in this flight; very nice minerally finish. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 93

FLIGHT TWO: BATARD MONTRACHET

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Rigatoni kamut, swordfish, and eggplant ragu (Yes, this tasted about as bad as it looked [wink.gif] )

9 [2011 Sauzet Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; aromas of white flowers and honeysuckle (did a BBM get mixed in here?); medium weight green apple and pear flavors with extreme elegance and nice minerality in the finish; this is very impressive. Seven votes for best in flight. My number 7 wine of the night. Group Rank: Seventh, 11 points (0/0/2/2/1) 94

10 [2011 Henri Boillot Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; aromas of blood orange (some said apple cider); attractive ready to drink apple flavors, this seemed to get more advanced the longer it was open; other tasters said “apple cider” and “crushed vitamins”; four of us thought this was clearly advanced, but others liked it well enough as is. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 90-advanced

11 [2011 Leflaive Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; white flowers and mint (like Ramonet); nice flavors-medium weight Batard pear/apple, but relatively simple and straight-forward. Four votes for wine of the flight. Group Rank: Tied for 8th, 7 points (0/1/0/1/1) 93

12 [2011 Jean-Marc Pillot Chassagne Montrachet Vergers “Clos St. Marc” (Ringer B-1)]
Light gold color; white flowers and citrus aromas; elegant, very minerally pear flavors; just a little less density than the others, so I suspect this is my ringer, but a very nice wine with some upside. One vote for wine of flight. (N.B. This is from Jean-Marc Pillot’s plot of very old vines within the Clos St. Marc, which is within Chassagne Vergers. It’s consistently grand cru quality wine and a fun ringer for a Batard flight.) Group Rank: Tied for 11th, 4 points (0/0/1/0/1) 93+

13 [2011 Ramonet Bienvenues Batard Montrachet]
Light to medium gold color; light white flowers aromas; not too much complexity on the palate; there is some elegance here, and some glyceral fat/depth, but not much in terms of depth of fruit here – a bit surprising for a Batard actually. (N.B. Yes, this really is a BBM mixed in with the Batard flight – a long story about a Ramonet mixup that we couldn’t fix in time for the dinner.) Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 91

14 [2011 Colin-Morey Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; reductive aromas and some spice; bright, good crisp pear-apple fruit with good acidity and a nice finish. Three votes for wine of flight. Group Rank: Tied for 8th, 7 points (0/0/1/1/2) 93+

15 [2011 Pernot Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; citrus and red apple aromas; ripe red apple flavors – obviously very advanced; a bit flat at the end too. Eight tasters agree this is advanced. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 88-Advanced

16 [2011 Pierre Morey Batard Montrachet]
Light gold color; overtly oxidized aromas; flavors of advanced apple cider and toasted cereal – completely oxidized. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) DQ Oxidized

FLIGHT THREE: CHEVALIER MONTRACHET MONTRACHET (A)

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Cioppino, assorted seafood, lobster broth

17 [2011 Bernard Moreau Chevalier Montrachet]
Very light gold color; sweet white flowers and green apple aromas; real sappy, intense fruit with great acidity and abundant minerality; a real WOW wine. Nine votes for best in flight. My No. 2 wine of the night. Group Rank: 1st, 58 points (6/4/2/3/0) 95+

18 [2011 Jadot Chevalier Montrachet Demoiselles]
Another very light, white gold colored wine; incredibly complex white flowers and citrus aromas; intense sweet citrus flavors with a good deal of minerality. Another WOW wine. Four votes for wine of flight. My No. 3 wine of the night. Group Rank: Third, 24 points (1/3/2/0/1) 95

19 [2011 Montille Puligny Caillerets [DIAM] (Ringer CHV-1)]
Light gold color; initially some slightly tropical, sweet white flowers aromas which got less tropical with air; this is a little richer than # 17 or #18, but has very good acidity and real density – impressive. Two votes for wine of flight. Group Rank: Tied for 5th, 14 points (0/3/0/1/0) 94

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20 [2011 Francois Carrillon Chevalier Montrachet]
Light gold color; a slightly odd chemical element in the aromas; the flavors seem odd too – almond? Seems to be a lot of new wood in this wine too. Consensus: this has some sort of chemical flaw. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 86? Chemically flawed

21 [2011 Bouchard Chevalier Montrachet (DIAM)]
Very light gold color; white flowers and lime citrus aromas; elegant, really long but also light. My No. 5 wine of the night. Group Rank: Tied for 5th, 14 points (0/0/2/3/2) 94

22 [2011 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet]
Very light gold color; white flowers aromas; slightly sweet, compelling Chevalier citrus flavors with a sweet uptake on the back end. My number 4 wine of the night. (N.B. Without doubt, the best Leflaive Chevy that I have had since the 2002 vintage, although very different in style than the Leflaive wines from 1985 to 2005.) Group Rank: tied for 11th, 4 points (0/0/0/2/0) 94+

FLIGHT FOUR: CHEVALIER MONTRACHET MONTRACHET (B)

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Pan roasted breast of duck, Kumquat sauce

23 [2011 Marc Morey Chevalier Montrachet]
Light gold color, but deeper than the others in flights 3 and 4; fairly concentrated white flowers aromas; slightly sweet, attractive citrus flavors with lots of elegance – but in the back half of the palate this seems advanced. The longer this sat, the more advanced it got. Consensus: advanced. (N.B. Marc Morey Chevy has been very trouble free over the years, so this bottle was an unpleasant surprise.) Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 91-Advanced

24 [2011 Niellon Chevalier Montrachet]
Darkest color of the last two flights – medium plus gold; pretty obviously advanced aromas and flavors. Consensus advanced. Group Rank: tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 87-Advanced

25 [2011 Ramonet Chevalier Montrachet]
Between light and medium gold color; clean, light lemon and lemon oil aromas; seemed concentrated on the front of the palate but dull back end which is very off and bitter. The consensus was that this wine is flawed and is off and bitter. Group Rank: Tied for 14th (last), 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 90-Chemically Flawed

26 [2011 Colin-Morey Chevalier Montrachet]
Light gold color; light citrus and green apple aromas; some real intensity of fruit and minerals here; incredible wine. My wine of the night without doubt. Thirteen votes for best in flight. Group Rank: 2nd, 56 points (8/3/1/0/1) 96

27 [2011 Sauzet Chevalier Montrachet]
Light gold color; some lightly reductive, meyer lemon and lemon peel aromas; very bright, lemon-lime citrus flavors; a nice wine but not as good as # 26. Group Rank: Tied for 14th, 0 points (0/0/0/0/0) 93

28 [2011 Dancer Chevalier Montrachet]
Light yellow-green color; super-reductive – heavy petrol aromas; seems permanently stuck or reductive; not sure this could ever improve. Consensus: excessive reduction, flawed. Group Rank: 13th, 3 points (0/0/1/0/0) DQ-excessively reduced-flawed

DESSERT COURSE

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Dark chocolate cremeaux, cocoa almond, milk chocolate Chantilly

2002 Christoffel Urziger Wurtgarten Eiswein
Medium gold color; orange and maple syrup aromas; very long, not fat, precise orange and maple syrup flavors and minerality with a nice finish. 94

Some general comments on what we experienced in the night two dinner and some comments on the producers' wines that we tasted ---

• We experienced a very large divergence in the number of oxidized and advanced wines during the 2011 vintage. We encountered very little premox on night one, and none at all on night three (the only other time this happened was with the 2007 vintage), but we had a large percentage of premox on night two. It demonstrates the risk of judging a vintage based on wines from a limited number of samples or just a few of the appellations. (Hard to figure….)

• We also experienced the largest number of bottles ever which seemed to have reduction problems or serious chemical flaws. A total of 11 of the 29 wines we tasted on night two either had premox problems or some type of reduction–related issue or a serious chemical flaw. We didn’t have numbers like that on night one or night three, or in prior years, but this dinner certainly confirmed for me that reductive winemaking, while it may help to avoid premox issues, can also lead to issues of its own.

• The DIAM closed wines continued to perform flawlessly from a premox perspective. Once again, there were no oxidized or advanced bottles closed with DIAM. There were also no unusual or unexpected aromas, but we did have one bottle of Jadot Bienvenues which had strong wood resin aromas and woody flavors. Those aromas did not appear to be related to the DIAM closure – the aroma was akin to turpentine. However, one California winemaker in another thread about DIAM, who has a very good knowledge of organic chemistry, suggested that there is at least a possibility of something in the nature of wood resin developing as type of reduction aroma. To date though, we’ve experienced nothing closed with DIAM which appeared to have excessive reduction aromas of any type.

• My overall impression remains that the 2011 vintage is a solid, technically correct vintage. With a handful of notable exceptions, it does not have as much density and weight as the 2009 and 2010 vintages, but there are a handful of 2011 that are flat out terrific and as good or better than their counterparts from 2008 to 2010.

• The flight of 2011 Criots/BBM was maybe the best overall flight of those wines we have ever had. Carillon was again the favorite of the flight as it usually is.

Jadot -- The 2011 vintage, with DIAM enclosures used for the first time, has been a stunning success for Jadot. Three of the four Jadot wines we tasted on night one or night two finished in the top three wines rated by the group for each night. Jadot is back on my “buy” list for their top wines starting with 2011. DIAM will probably restore Jadot’s reputation, but the badly flawed 2011 Bienvenues proved that you can still have bad wines despite DIAM.

Colin-Morey – A very solid performance once again. The Chevalier Montrachet was spectacular. In my view, it is probably the best Chevalier that Pierre Yves has made through the 2011 vintage. The MP on night one was also the best MP we have tasted from PYCM at these dinners as well. The Corton Charlemagne on night one was also extraordinary. The Criots, Bienvenues and Batard, and the Meursault Charmes tasted on night one, while all very good, were not quite as exciting.

Bernard Moreau – This was the first time we have included a Bernard Moreau Chevalier, and it was absolutely stunning. A very impressive Chevalier.

Montille and Chateau de Puligny Montrachet – An impressive performance from Etienne and Alix de Montille. The Montille Puligny Caillerets was served as a ringer in a flight of Chevalier Montrachets. The wine was spectacular in context and nobody identified it as an obvious ringer in a flight of Chevaliers, which is exactly what I had hoped. (As you may have observed, I frequently include adjacent 1er vineyards as ringers.) The Puligny Caillerets tied for No. 5 overall on night two and it shocked a few people when it was unbagged.

Domaine Leflaive and Olivier Leflaive – amazingly, all three wines from Domaine Leflaive on night two were very good to excellent and not advanced or oxidized, though the style isn’t remotely the same as it used to be. It was the best showing for Domaine Leflaive since 2002.

Henri Boillot - It's like a broken record, but at every dinner, year after year, there are invariably advanced wines from Henri Boillot. One out of two on night one. One out of two on night two. I continue to include the Henri Boillot wines because the attendees continue to buy them and Boillot has large public following and continues to draw praise from the wine critics, but frankly I have a hard time understanding why. Boillot does not acknowledge that his wines have premox problems and he never discusses with the critics any steps by the Domaine to try to resolve the obvious and overwhelming premox issues. So why does he continue to get a pass from the critics? The grand cru wines from this Domaine sell for absurdly high prices and yet have huge premox risk.

Ramonet - Without question the 2011 vintage dinners were the least impressive showing for Ramonet since the premox disaster vintages in 1996 and 1999. I’m hoping that the Chevalier we tasted on night two was an off bottle, but that was clearly the worst example of a Ramonet Chevy I’ve ever tasted and Ramonet has been my favorite Chevalier in all but one vintage prior to 2011.

Dancer – An enigma. Dancer is capable of producing spectacular wines (e.g., the 2010 MP, which was the group’s favorite wine at night one dinner for the 2010 vintage), yet Dancer is also capable of producing horribly flawed wines, and in the past, oxidized wines. Both the Chevalier and Meursault Perrieres were disasters in 2011, so the jury is still out on Dancer.

Pernot – Both the Batard and BBM were advanced. These wines seem to have notably declined in quality since the 2007 vintage and are too often advanced.

Pierre Morey – Another oxidized bottle from Pierre Morey. Since the 1996 vintage [corrected from 1989] I don’t believe that I’ve ever tasted a Pierre Morey wine that was older than seven years that wasn’t oxidized or advanced. It is really difficult to believe that the man who made all of those reductive and amazingly long-lived wines from Domaine Leflaive manages to produce one premox disaster after another from his own winery. Yes, I realize that the wine-making methods and barrel aging regime are completely different.

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A total of 38% of the 29 bottles we tasted on night two either had premox problems or reduction/chemical problems. As noted, this is far, far worse than night one or night three of the 2011 dinners, but the numbers for nights one and two combined still yielded a defect rate between 25% (group numbers) and 31% (my numbers). So, we are clearly not out of the woods yet.
Last edited by Don Cornwell on February 15th, 2020, 5:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#2 Post by Joshua Kates » February 15th, 2020, 3:58 am

Great notes, fascinating report, thanks so much!

(Strange about the Dancer--I buy quite a few of his lower level wines and I have never encountered any problems. I only started buying with his 2014's, so perhaps too early to tell. Have Boillot going back further and have encountered these same problems unfortunately; stopped buying.)
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#3 Post by alan weinberg » February 15th, 2020, 8:38 am

super assessment. It’s clear that Burgundy still can’t accept the problem or solve it though Diam (or screwcaps) looks to be a way out.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#4 Post by B. Buzzini » February 15th, 2020, 8:45 am

Too bad on the Carillon Chevy. I've had it a couple times now, and although it does need serious air time, it was brilliant!

Super work Don! [cheers.gif]
  • 2011 Francois Carillon Chevalier-Montrachet - France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru (1/5/2019)
    First dinner of 2019! (Galletto Ristorante, Modesto Ca.): Slow oxed for 10hrs...showing intense angry energy and piercing acidity at first...took to dinner, and it unfolded brilliantly!! Turned into the most amazingly soft and elegant texture...like a thin layered flaky pastry...SO pure and balanced...fresh citrus energy still there, chalky limestone, exotic white honey butter, almond pastry...flat out amazing! (97 pts.)
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#5 Post by Dennis Borczon » February 15th, 2020, 8:55 am

[worship.gif] This is a really great service. Too bad many of the paid publications out there do so little of this. Kudos to Don for publishing this analysis for FREE here. Certainly guides my buying decisions. Begs the question, why don't the pros go back more often to assess the early reads they had on vintages/producers?

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#6 Post by john stimson » February 15th, 2020, 9:54 am

Oooo... Dr Grenley and i have been hammering on first Tanzer, then Galloni to do this. One answer is that it would be expensive and complicated for them to try to do this properly. Remember, most of the wine they taste is provided for free to them by producers, or part of industry sponsored large tastings. Also, critically reviewing the results, and potentially panning some producers repeatedly, can make it harder to get your foot in the door for future freely provided tastings at certain estates.

In response recently, Tanzer has tried to have producers he is visiting provide an older bottle of a given vintage to taste while he is visiting to review the new vintage. But this doesn't really satisfy a truly independent review of a vintage.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#7 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm

I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#8 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 15th, 2020, 2:27 pm

Have just opened a perrieres 2011 morey : "not oxidized !" as you would say (what a surprise).
Stats have spoken: 100% pierre morey not oxidized in 2011...

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#9 Post by Don Cornwell » February 15th, 2020, 2:40 pm

B. Buzzini wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 8:45 am
Too bad on the Carillon Chevy. I've had it a couple times now, and although it does need serious air time, it was brilliant!

Super work Don! [cheers.gif]
  • 2011 Francois Carillon Chevalier-Montrachet - France, Burgundy, Côte de Beaune, Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru (1/5/2019)
    First dinner of 2019! (Galletto Ristorante, Modesto Ca.): Slow oxed for 10hrs...showing intense angry energy and piercing acidity at first...took to dinner, and it unfolded brilliantly!! Turned into the most amazingly soft and elegant texture...like a thin layered flaky pastry...SO pure and balanced...fresh citrus energy still there, chalky limestone, exotic white honey butter, almond pastry...flat out amazing! (97 pts.)
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I was surprised and a bit puzzled by the wine. I bought his Chevalier in 2009 and 2010 and the 2010 finished No. 2 overall on night two of the 2010 dinners. From your notes it sounds like the 2011 is pretty spectacular too.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#10 Post by Eric Lundblad » February 15th, 2020, 3:54 pm

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm
I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish
I've loved the Pierre Morey whites that I've had, and haven't had a premoxed one either.

However, I just did a search in Cellar Tracker for notes on his 2002-2010 1er & grand cru whites, and out of 105 total notes there were 15-20 bottles that folks described as premoxed (a couple of the notes mentioned 'this is the second bottle...' (or third), hence the slight fuzziness in my count).

Anyways, Don isn't the only one that's experienced premox in PM's wines.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#11 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » February 15th, 2020, 4:22 pm

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm
I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish
Don has been tracking premox issues for well more than a decade. Your post is ill informed, and rude.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#12 Post by Andrew S. » February 15th, 2020, 4:32 pm

Eric Lundblad wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 3:54 pm
Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm
I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish
I've loved the Pierre Morey whites that I've had, and haven't had a premoxed one either.

However, I just did a search in Cellar Tracker for notes on his 2002-2010 1er & grand cru whites, and out of 105 total notes there were 15-20 bottles that folks described as premoxed (a couple of the notes mentioned 'this is the second bottle...' (or third), hence the slight fuzziness in my count).

Anyways, Don isn't the only one that's experienced premox in PM's wines.
Premox is a baffling issue that no one seems to truly understand and know how to solve. It strikes with tremendous irregularity. As a point of reference, I've had 0 oxidized white burgs from my cellar (all sourced through impeccable importers/distributors on release) - except for Pierre Morey. I once purchased two or three cases of his wine (can't recall the vintage but I'm betting it was 04) - bottle after bottle of which was oxidized. The wine distributor took it all back and commented they had seen the issue elsewhere. Perhaps it was the lot that made it to Los Angeles, I don't know. I'm personally for putting everything under screwcap, or if the domaine prefers, diam. We all have such different experiences, it should be very hard to get upset with someone whose experiences diverge from ours. All the data points are valuable.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#13 Post by Don Cornwell » February 15th, 2020, 5:04 pm

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm
I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish
Mr. Menger

You are certainly welcome to disagree with me. I'm not quite sure why but you seem to have taken everything quite personally here. Given the range of your criticism, it would seem that you have some other agenda.

For the record, I've been hosting these dinners for the last 14 years and the methodology has been pretty much the same since the second year (except that we went to fully blind voting and no unbagging until the end of the dinner with the 2007 vintage.) We taste as many as possible of the top 60-75 bottles from each vintage at 7.5 years of age usually over three nights (excluding a few of the most insanely priced items like DRC Montrachet). The objective is to include bottles only with top provenance, and a large number of the bottles come out out of my own cellar that were acquired upon release, most often in Europe (and in some cases direct from the producers). Because of the cost and the logistics (including the massive numbers of stems required and the physical space), we are limited to one bottle of each wine and 14 attendees for nights one and two. The objectives here are to look at the vintage as a whole on the front end of normal maturity (7.5 years), and to taste the top-rated wines from the vintage to have a real sense of the vintage. A related purpose is to get some useful information about the overall incidence of premature oxidation in the vintage and to look at that incidence year over year to see what patterns arise. We do everything blind, including the voting. Nobody else does this anywhere in the world with mature wines. However, Jasper Morris and a number of people from the UK wine trade hold an event called Burgfest that looks at both red and white burgundies three years after the vintage (too soon to look at premox-related issues.) My method of evaluating premature oxidation has its limitations for sure, but it's clearly better than the non-existent alternatives.

The editorial comments that I include with tasting notes are solely my own views. I fully recognize the limits of doing one bottle tastings. But we both know that no one will ever do such a tasting with a statistically significant number of bottle samples either. (In fact, at the ridiculous pricing being asked for new vintages of many of the grand crus, it is unlikely these dinners will be able to continue much longer.)

I need to correct myself in one respect about Pierre Morey's wines. I went back through an old index to tasting notes that I maintained for years. I did have three sound bottles of Pierre Morey wines in the 1996 vintage -- one bottle of Batard in October of 2005 and two bottles of MP in 2006 and 2010. It was the 1999 vintage where the problems began in earnest. I had three consecutive bottles of fully oxidized MP between February 2007 and May 2009. I had purchased four bottles on release. The last bottle opened in January of 2010 was still alive but notably tired. After the 1999 vintage I stopped buying Pierre Morey wines for my cellar, and the only bottles I tried were either single bottles purchased to library for tastings or bottles that other collectors furnished. What I have found is consistently advanced bottles.

There are many members of the Morey family whose wines I regularly buy (including Marc Morey, Thomas Morey, Morey-Coffinet, Caroline Morey (wife of PYCM) and in some vintages Vincent & Sophie Morey, but just not the Pierre Morey wines any more. As Eric noted, I'm by no means alone in finding way too much premox in Pierre's wines.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#14 Post by c fu » February 15th, 2020, 5:50 pm

I bought some 2011 Bernard Moreau Chevy after this tasting. First bottle I opened was fairly advanced. I made note of it on Instagram and got a few messages discussing how they also have had a number of advanced wine from them. But I have had a few other 2011s from them that have been awesome
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#15 Post by Don Cornwell » February 15th, 2020, 6:54 pm

c fu wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 5:50 pm
I bought some 2011 Bernard Moreau Chevy after this tasting. First bottle I opened was fairly advanced. I made note of it on Instagram and got a few messages discussing how they also have had a number of advanced wine from them. But I have had a few other 2011s from them that have been awesome
Charlie

My bottles of Chevalier came from one of the UK importers, Christopher Keiler. I still have a couple of bottles of the 2011 left and some bottles of 2013. I do have a bottle of 2012 Batard for the next round of dinners too. I have tried to locate a 2012 Chevalier with good provenance, but so far no luck.

I used to get emails from people asking me why I didn't include the Bernard Moreau 1ers in the dinners because, as it was explained to me, they have a very good track record for premox. The short answer was that we don't normally taste Chassgane at the dinners, aside from grand crus and the occasional ringer. But I did resolve to try to find some examples of the Bernard Moreau Batard and Chevalier, which can be difficult to find. I was also encouraged when I tasted the 2015 Bernard Moreau 1ers at the Paulee in San Francisco. While I'm generally not a fan of the 2015 whites (mostly way too ripe and too low in acid for my taste), I was generally impressed with the Bernard Moreau 1er wines which tasted better than most of the 2015 grand crus that I tasted.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#16 Post by Greg K » February 15th, 2020, 10:44 pm

I’ve had multiple advanced bottles of 2011 Pierre Morey; am surprised by the strong reaction.

Thanks for the notes Don. And agreed on the Pillot Clos St. Marc; with a few years it’s a great wine.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#17 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 15th, 2020, 11:17 pm

Funny: when someone disagrees, he necessarily has to have a stake in the wine business or some personnal agenda. I should accept THE truth revealed by great connoisseurs: PM wines are oxidized....
I have no agenda. I am not in the wine business. I am not a spokesman for Domaine Pierre Morey. This is now said.
I just find extremely unpleasant to read years after years bold statements on trends by domaine from people whose experience is pretty limited with the wines they criticize. It seems you have not drunk PM wines for a decade. Your comments are then more "heard on the street" or gossip than a true /statistical assessment. Let's call it a day

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#18 Post by JasperMorris » February 15th, 2020, 11:30 pm

A note on the Bernard Moreau Chevalier-Montrachet (and other grands crus when made). These are only made in tiny quantities and are negociant cuvees rather than domaine wines. Ditto Francois Carillon Chevalier for that matter.
Might be worth slipping in a top Chassagne 1er cru from Moreau as a ringer one year?

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#19 Post by Don Cornwell » February 15th, 2020, 11:43 pm

JasperMorris wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 11:30 pm
A note on the Bernard Moreau Chevalier-Montrachet (and other grands crus when made). These are only made in tiny quantities and are negociant cuvees rather than domaine wines. Ditto Francois Carillon Chevalier for that matter.
Might be worth slipping in a top Chassagne 1er cru from Moreau as a ringer one year?
Sounds like a great idea Jasper.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#20 Post by Herwig Janssen » February 16th, 2020, 2:47 am

Hi Don , great report as usual . Good to hear from you .

Regarding Pierre Morey , I have had a few oxidised wines , the last one was a horrible Batard Montrachet 2005 . How bizarre , I must have tons less experience about Pierre Morey and still found a bottle that does not exist .

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#21 Post by Ian A » February 16th, 2020, 3:56 am

Many thanks Don for sharing this and in particular summarising you’re conclusions. Invaluable information, and clearly completely objective and impartial.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#22 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 4:27 am

I drank batard 2005 and perrieres 2005 12m ago. 2 bottles reputedly plagued by premox. Both were great, directly from domaine.
I dont question your tasting capabilities. I dont like how you draw conclusions based on a few samples that are definitely not statistically representative. In statistics you could rather call these datapoints outliers. You want to call them "the average".

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#23 Post by Joshua Kates » February 16th, 2020, 4:42 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 4:27 am
I drank batard 2005 and perrieres 2005 12m ago. 2 bottles reputedly plagued by premox. Both were great, directly from domaine.
I dont question your tasting capabilities. I dont like how you draw conclusions based on a few samples that are definitely not statistically representative. In statistics you could rather call these datapoints outliers. You want to call them "the average".
"Outliers" are when among a statistically significant sample a much smaller number register as a deviation, as in the tails of a bell curve. Whatever we have, that is not what we have here. The fact that among a very small number of bottles premox has consistently appeared has to be disturbing. To be sure, it is not determinative statistically either, but it seems, at the least, very odd, no?
Pierre Morey has made a huge contribution to winemaking, and it is sad, as you say, that things have come to this pass. But the entire pre-mox phenomenon is sadder still, and what is to be done when winemakers won't take responsibility for it?

Btw, Don, curious why PYCM does not make it on to your list of those in the Morey family you buy?
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#24 Post by Don Cornwell » February 16th, 2020, 5:20 am

Herwig Janssen wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 2:47 am
Hi Don , great report as usual . Good to hear from you .

Regarding Pierre Morey , I have had a few oxidised wines , the last one was a horrible Batard Montrachet 2005 . How bizarre , I must have tons less experience about Pierre Morey and still found a bottle that does not exist .
Hi Herwig

I miss seeing you. Hope we meet up again soon.

I wasn't intending to digress about this, but my experience with Pierre Morey, while definitely limited since 2002, has been sadly consistent. Because of my bad prior experiences, I do not include any Pierre Morey wines on the "eligible list" of wines for the vintage assessment dinners (just as I don't include Pierre Amiot, Blain-Gagnard, Fontaine-Gagnard, Matrot, Mikulksi, Le Moine and, until 2011, Jadot). But periodically one of the attendees lobbies me to allow them to bring a Pierre Morey MP or Batard because they don't own any other bottles from the eligible list. I particularly remember the 2004 Pierre Morey MP. On the 2004 vintage it was damn hard to produce premoxed wine. There was so much sulfur trapped between the grapes from the oidium treatments that almost everybody produced reductive wines -- even Henri Boillot. One of the attendees wanted to bring 2004 Pierre Morey MP to the dinner despite the fact that it wasn't on the eligible list. I insisted the only way we could do that would be to open a bottle together in advance to check it. We did, and sure enough it was oxidized. For the 2007 night one dinner, one of the attendees wanted to bring a 2007 Pierre Morey MP, which again wasn't on the eligible list. I said no. He ended up bringing the bottle to the dinner anyway and offered it as a "backup" or additional wine. We didn't drink it (we had 30 wines that night) and, at the end of the evening, he gave me the bottle to take home and try. About four months later I opened it side by side with a PYCM MP. The PYCM was off the charts great, but the Pierre Morey version was highly advanced and got poured down the drain.

The 2011 Pierre Morey Batard wasn't on the eligible list in 2019 either. It got included in the dinner only because we had one slot left to fill in the Batard flight, and that was the only 2011 Batard the attendee owned. I didn't own any more 2011 Batards myself and I already had one ringer in the Batard flight, so I reluctantly agreed to include the Pierre Morey Batard. We ended up with three advanced or oxidized bottles in that flight -- Boillot Batard, Pernot Batard, and Pierre Morey Batard. I wasn't the least bit surprised by any of them. So, until I see some published evidence about significant changes in Pierre Morey's winemaking, there won't be any more of his wines included in these dinners.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#25 Post by Don Cornwell » February 16th, 2020, 5:33 am

Joshua Kates wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 4:42 am
Btw, Don, curious why PYCM does not make it on to your list of those in the Morey family you buy?
I do buy Colin-Morey wines for sure, but since he is Marc Colin's son, I always consider him part of the Colin family. blush His real name is Pierre-Yves Colin, but now people refer to him as PYCM.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#26 Post by Joshua Kates » February 16th, 2020, 6:13 am

Don Cornwell wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 5:33 am
Joshua Kates wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 4:42 am
Btw, Don, curious why PYCM does not make it on to your list of those in the Morey family you buy?
I do buy Colin-Morey wines for sure, but since he is Marc Colin's son, I always consider him part of the Colin family. blush His real name is Pierre-Yves Colin, but now people refer to him as PYCM.
Gotcha, Don,
Forgot.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#27 Post by Howard Cooper » February 16th, 2020, 6:37 am

JasperMorris wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 11:30 pm
A note on the Bernard Moreau Chevalier-Montrachet (and other grands crus when made). These are only made in tiny quantities and are negociant cuvees rather than domaine wines. Ditto Francois Carillon Chevalier for that matter.
Might be worth slipping in a top Chassagne 1er cru from Moreau as a ringer one year?
+1
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#28 Post by Howard Cooper » February 16th, 2020, 6:40 am

Don Cornwell wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 5:20 am
Herwig Janssen wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 2:47 am
Hi Don , great report as usual . Good to hear from you .

Regarding Pierre Morey , I have had a few oxidised wines , the last one was a horrible Batard Montrachet 2005 . How bizarre , I must have tons less experience about Pierre Morey and still found a bottle that does not exist .
Hi Herwig

I miss seeing you. Hope we meet up again soon.

I wasn't intending to digress about this, but my experience with Pierre Morey, while definitely limited since 2002, has been sadly consistent. Because of my bad prior experiences, I do not include any Pierre Morey wines on the "eligible list" of wines for the vintage assessment dinners (just as I don't include Pierre Amiot, Blain-Gagnard, Fontaine-Gagnard, Matrot, Mikulksi, Le Moine and, until 2011, Jadot). But periodically one of the attendees lobbies me to allow them to bring a Pierre Morey MP or Batard because they don't own any other bottles from the eligible list. I particularly remember the 2004 Pierre Morey MP. On the 2004 vintage it was damn hard to produce premoxed wine. There was so much sulfur trapped between the grapes from the oidium treatments that almost everybody produced reductive wines -- even Henri Boillot. One of the attendees wanted to bring 2004 Pierre Morey MP to the dinner despite the fact that it wasn't on the eligible list. I insisted the only way we could do that would be to open a bottle together in advance to check it. We did, and sure enough it was oxidized. For the 2007 night one dinner, one of the attendees wanted to bring a 2007 Pierre Morey MP, which again wasn't on the eligible list. I said no. He ended up bringing the bottle to the dinner anyway and offered it as a "backup" or additional wine. We didn't drink it (we had 30 wines that night) and, at the end of the evening, he gave me the bottle to take home and try. About four months later I opened it side by side with a PYCM MP. The PYCM was off the charts great, but the Pierre Morey version was highly advanced and got poured down the drain.

The 2011 Pierre Morey Batard wasn't on the eligible list in 2019 either. It got included in the dinner only because we had one slot left to fill in the Batard flight, and that was the only 2011 Batard the attendee owned. I didn't own any more 2011 Batards myself and I already had one ringer in the Batard flight, so I reluctantly agreed to include the Pierre Morey Batard. We ended up with three advanced or oxidized bottles in that flight -- Boillot Batard, Pernot Batard, and Pierre Morey Batard. I wasn't the least bit surprised by any of them. So, until I see some published evidence about significant changes in Pierre Morey's winemaking, there won't be any more of his wines included in these dinners.
What producers are on your eligible list?
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#29 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 7:06 am

Seems that Pierre-Yves Collin Morey is on the eligible list judging by the huge number of his wines present at the diner. I would call this statistically representative of PYCM production at least !


Congrats also for having cracked the mysteries of premox: DIAM closure is the solution.... until it is proven the contrary.
Super bold statements as always.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#30 Post by Robert Grenley » February 16th, 2020, 7:51 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 7:06 am
Seems that Pierre-Yves Collin Morey is on the eligible list judging by the huge number of his wines present at the diner. I would call this statistically representative of PYCM production at least !


Congrats also for having cracked the mysteries of premox: DIAM closure is the solution.... until it is proven the contrary.
Super bold statements as always.
These tastings provide valuable information, and DC simply summarizes his experience with various producers going back through many years of these assessment dinners as well as from his personal tastings. Apparently your experience has been different. However, you are the one who is drawing bizarre conclusions. You are really annoying.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#31 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 8:06 am

Robert Grenley wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 7:51 am
Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 7:06 am
Seems that Pierre-Yves Collin Morey is on the eligible list judging by the huge number of his wines present at the diner. I would call this statistically representative of PYCM production at least !


Congrats also for having cracked the mysteries of premox: DIAM closure is the solution.... until it is proven the contrary.
Super bold statements as always.
These tastings provide valuable information, and DC simply summarizes his experience with various producers going back through many years of these assessment dinners as well as from his personal tastings. Apparently your experience has been different. However, you are the one who is drawing bizarre conclusions. You are really annoying.
Dude: I am the only one saying that my personal experience does not prove the wines of a particular producer can be considered as highly risky across the board from what you guys call "a premox perspective" (note that I also diasgree with your words).
A tasting is a tasting: wines were flawed. So be it. Let's not judge too rapidly a domaine, a man, a family and decades of hard work simply because a bunch of guys popped the wines and find them shitty. Otherwise the door is opened for anything (including personal agenda and urban legends)

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#32 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » February 16th, 2020, 8:29 am

There has been an issue for years. Just because you don’t like it does not invalidate the year over year results.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#33 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 8:45 am

I dont invalidate the results of a tasting my dear. Please allow me to find presumptuous the high level conclusions drawn from the tasting.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#34 Post by R. Frankel » February 16th, 2020, 8:56 am

20+% failure rate on 61 bottles is significant. One can’t say this is just bad luck or user error. Gather up all of Don’s data going back a decade+ and the steady problematic error rates become far more than credible. I’m sure there’s a statistician on this board who could give us error bars around these samples, but no reasonable person could say there’s no problem. Result: I don’t buy GC White Burg (yea, it’s stupidly expensive, too) and don’t try to store any for decades. Happily I enjoy (lesser) white burgs young. I really appreciate Don’s effort.

The ad hominem attacks are, as usual, standard fare for online discussions. I just try to ignore them.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#35 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » February 16th, 2020, 8:59 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 8:45 am
I dont invalidate the results of a tasting my dear. Please allow me to find presumptuous the high level conclusions drawn from the tasting.
Condescend much?
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#36 Post by Greg K » February 16th, 2020, 10:02 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 8:06 am
Robert Grenley wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 7:51 am
Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 7:06 am
Seems that Pierre-Yves Collin Morey is on the eligible list judging by the huge number of his wines present at the diner. I would call this statistically representative of PYCM production at least !


Congrats also for having cracked the mysteries of premox: DIAM closure is the solution.... until it is proven the contrary.
Super bold statements as always.
These tastings provide valuable information, and DC simply summarizes his experience with various producers going back through many years of these assessment dinners as well as from his personal tastings. Apparently your experience has been different. However, you are the one who is drawing bizarre conclusions. You are really annoying.
Dude: I am the only one saying that my personal experience does not prove the wines of a particular producer can be considered as highly risky across the board from what you guys call "a premox perspective" (note that I also diasgree with your words).
A tasting is a tasting: wines were flawed. So be it. Let's not judge too rapidly a domaine, a man, a family and decades of hard work simply because a bunch of guys popped the wines and find them shitty. Otherwise the door is opened for anything (including personal agenda and urban legends)
No one is impugning Pierre Morey or any other producer. However, I have a limited amount of money to spend on wine, especially given the price of white burgundy. In my experience, and in the experience of others, Pierre Morey wines suffer from premox. If your experience differs, that’s great for you, and you should keep buying and enjoying these wines. But I find your argument quixotic; you would like us all to invalidate significant personal experiences (some of them on a blind basis) because YOUR personal experiences have been different. That’s not how this works.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#37 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 10:18 am

Sorry to develop quixotic thesis. Apparently affirming that 2011 vintage has a 20pct premox rate on the basis of 60 wines tasted only one time does not call questions.
Well noted. Thanks

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#38 Post by john stimson » February 16th, 2020, 10:26 am

Not that I agree with Emmanuel, but before we totally blow him out of the water with nuclear weapons, realize that a tasting of these wines in LA may yield totally different results than a tasting of the same wines in France. the wines that made it to LA have very likely been exposed to more oxidative stress than those in france, particularly those that have come straight from a domain's cellars. I don't know where Emmanuel lives, but this could be a factor in his experience. Of course this still doesn't mean that certain wines are still far more susceptible to premox than other wines.

One illustration of this is in the 2018 Dauvissat thread currently on this board. I gave up on WB many years ago, but still have accumulated Dauvissat wines. My hand begins to shake when I choose a bottle from the 2008-2011 range because of a very high premox rate. And yet in that thread William Kelly, whose opinion I trust, has stated that he has never had a premoxed bottle of Dauvissat of any age in France. so for those in France, talk of a high premox rate amongst Dauvissat, and perhaps many other producers, may sound like crazy-talk.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#39 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 10:36 am

I'm living in Paris. My wines are cellared in a very cool and damp cellar in the outskirts of paris. All wines are shipped from the domaines where I have allocations to the cellar. Pierre Morey is releasing every year old vintages from his cellar, kept in pristine conditions. Never had an issue since I hzve started buying in 2010.
It does not mean there are absolutely no issues with the wines but even vintages called problematic like 2002 have proven immune (perrieres 2002 was superb).
I will do another tasting of batard in a few months (most likely 2007,2005), if there are some issues I will happy to report them to you folks.
Cheers

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#40 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 10:46 am

In my experience some wines are extremely fragile and some are not.
Sauternes is almost indestructible.
And for example a lot of Leroy bottles post 1999 (to talk about one glorious estate) are leaking and wines are extremely fragile. I had hard times to transport them in good conditions. I remember having bought a pack of genaivrieres 2009 which started to leak a few hours after I transported them.
So yes, the place where you taste wines matters and I agree it is a pitty from a "customer experience" perspective if you find high variations between wines drunk in LA and those drunk in Meursault

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#41 Post by Greg K » February 16th, 2020, 11:01 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:18 am
Sorry to develop quixotic thesis. Apparently affirming that 2011 vintage has a 20pct premox rate on the basis of 60 wines tasted only one time does not call questions.
Well noted. Thanks
Being obtuse on a message board is only a winning strategy if your goal is to be an *sshole.

1. Don’s argument is clearly that the wines they’ve tasted had a 20% premox rate. You are pretending that has been extrapolated to the vintage as a whole. That’s your bizarre strawman.
2. Too many of us have had premoxed wines from Pierre Morey to accept your demand that we stop taking about a premox issue because YOU haven’t. I have to make decisions about buying wines based on what I want to drink. The Pierre Morey wines I’ve had have a high premox rate. Should I keep buying them because you claim you haven’t had that problem? Not until you start paying me for the wines I pour down the drain.
3. Your argument is quixotic, not your thesis. You have no thesis.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#42 Post by Greg K » February 16th, 2020, 11:04 am

john stimson wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:26 am
Not that I agree with Emmanuel, but before we totally blow him out of the water with nuclear weapons, realize that a tasting of these wines in LA may yield totally different results than a tasting of the same wines in France. the wines that made it to LA have very likely been exposed to more oxidative stress than those in france, particularly those that have come straight from a domain's cellars. I don't know where Emmanuel lives, but this could be a factor in his experience. Of course this still doesn't mean that certain wines are still far more susceptible to premox than other wines.

One illustration of this is in the 2018 Dauvissat thread currently on this board. I gave up on WB many years ago, but still have accumulated Dauvissat wines. My hand begins to shake when I choose a bottle from the 2008-2011 range because of a very high premox rate. And yet in that thread William Kelly, whose opinion I trust, has stated that he has never had a premoxed bottle of Dauvissat of any age in France. so for those in France, talk of a high premox rate amongst Dauvissat, and perhaps many other producers, may sound like crazy-talk.
That’s an interesting point, but I live in the US. If Pierre Morey wines can’t handle importation, I’d say they’re still flawed. Even if he made the best wines in the world, if I couldn’t drink then anywhere other than France, what use are they to me?
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#43 Post by Fred C » February 16th, 2020, 11:06 am

Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:36 am
Pierre Morey is releasing every year old vintages from his cellar, kept in pristine conditions. Never had an issue since I hzve started buying in 2010.
Emmanuel, do you know if yours are reconditioned late releases or original bottlings? Some domaines (eg. Fabian Coche) release reconditioned old vintages with new cork and label and the old wines are topped off. In those instances the 1985 taste as fresh as if it were bottled last year because...they were.

I believe premox is like cancer. Not just in the figurative sense but in that it is probably a multi hit model. There is the genetics (the wine or winemaking) that determines a certain level of susceptibility. Then there is environmental/oxidative stress like shipping and storage. Corks and added sulfur may be considered modifiable risk factors to some extent or “antioxidants”. Just my personal hypothesis.

I’ve also found that older Champagne from London or Europe usually tastes fresher than older champagne I purchase in the US.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#44 Post by Robert Grenley » February 16th, 2020, 11:13 am

john stimson wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:26 am
Not that I agree with Emmanuel, but before we totally blow him out of the water with nuclear weapons, realize that a tasting of these wines in LA may yield totally different results than a tasting of the same wines in France. the wines that made it to LA have very likely been exposed to more oxidative stress than those in france, particularly those that have come straight from a domain's cellars. I don't know where Emmanuel lives, but this could be a factor in his experience. Of course this still doesn't mean that certain wines are still far more susceptible to premox than other wines.

One illustration of this is in the 2018 Dauvissat thread currently on this board. I gave up on WB many years ago, but still have accumulated Dauvissat wines. My hand begins to shake when I choose a bottle from the 2008-2011 range because of a very high premox rate. And yet in that thread William Kelly, whose opinion I trust, has stated that he has never had a premoxed bottle of Dauvissat of any age in France. so for those in France, talk of a high premox rate amongst Dauvissat, and perhaps many other producers, may sound like crazy-talk.
..
While, interestingly, I believe he said he had experienced premoxed Dauvissat wines in The UK and the US...in case anyone missed that thread.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#45 Post by Glen Gold » February 16th, 2020, 11:24 am

Don, thanks for your notes. Beyond the reasons already stated, I find them valuable because it's helpful, as a novice, to see that even experienced folks like yourself run into bottle flaws that aren't easily categorized. When I open something that doesn't taste right and the flaw doesn't fit the profiles of premox, VA, TCA, brett or whatnot, I have felt like a dope for not being able to nail it better. "Chemically off" is a good descriptor.
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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#46 Post by Doug Schulman » February 16th, 2020, 12:58 pm

D@vid Bu3ker wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 4:22 pm
Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 15th, 2020, 2:02 pm
I completely disagree with the statements on Pierre Morey wines, and probably with all other generalizing statements you made on trends by domaine.
Having bought PM wines for a decade ex property, having cellared hundreds of his wines, and having sampled a few dozens in past years I never found any premox issue. Zero ! Nada !
I tasted 3 batard last summer: 2007,2011,2008. All were almost too young, the 2011 was a baby. Your bottle was likely off. You simply cant generalize with only one bottle of wine and make bold and somewhat ironic comments about how the man has run his business in a terrible manner. Sorry to say that, but I find key take-aways of this tasting utterly grotesque: calculating % oxydation by vintage, simply with one bottle or two bottles, what a really weird and unscientific protocole you have put in place....

And folks applauding and saying "I told you, they are oxydized !!!" / "good job for spotting the crooks"
this is foolish
Don has been tracking premox issues for well more than a decade. Your post is ill informed, and rude.
Let’s not forget illogical. Yes, those other things too.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#47 Post by Herwig Janssen » February 16th, 2020, 1:01 pm

My limited experience with Pierre Morey wines , tastings from the last couple of years ( tasting notes on vinotopia.be , my wine buddies club )
2005 Batard : oxydised
Perrieres 05 : 93/100 and 94/100
Charmes 07 : 93/100
Batard 04 : corked and second bottle oxidised
Perrieres 04 : 93/100

There is no doubt he ( actually , its a she now ) have issues . Maybe they were able to resolve them after 2010 , I would not know .
And I live in Belgium , same transportation as France ( direct , from the cellars , on release , temperature controlled cellars ) . To blame these issues on transportation is just not so .

John , I stopped buying Dauvissat here in Belgium because of premox . Transportation is NOT the issue . It's Dauvissat . William , who's opinion I also value greatly , may have been lucky but we have not .
Recent premoxed Dauvissat's : Clos 2008 , Preuses 08 , Preuses 05 , Clos 2000 , Clos 2006 . All bought on release . Dauvissat makes wonderful wines but his premox % is ( or was ) too high .

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#48 Post by john stimson » February 16th, 2020, 1:07 pm

Greg K wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 11:04 am
john stimson wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:26 am
Not that I agree with Emmanuel, but before we totally blow him out of the water with nuclear weapons, realize that a tasting of these wines in LA may yield totally different results than a tasting of the same wines in France. the wines that made it to LA have very likely been exposed to more oxidative stress than those in france, particularly those that have come straight from a domain's cellars. I don't know where Emmanuel lives, but this could be a factor in his experience. Of course this still doesn't mean that certain wines are still far more susceptible to premox than other wines.

One illustration of this is in the 2018 Dauvissat thread currently on this board. I gave up on WB many years ago, but still have accumulated Dauvissat wines. My hand begins to shake when I choose a bottle from the 2008-2011 range because of a very high premox rate. And yet in that thread William Kelly, whose opinion I trust, has stated that he has never had a premoxed bottle of Dauvissat of any age in France. so for those in France, talk of a high premox rate amongst Dauvissat, and perhaps many other producers, may sound like crazy-talk.
That’s an interesting point, but I live in the US. If Pierre Morey wines can’t handle importation, I’d say they’re still flawed. Even if he made the best wines in the world, if I couldn’t drink then anywhere other than France, what use are they to me?
I totally agree, But sometimes wildly different premox experiences between those whose wines go a long distance, and those whose wines have barely moved sometimes makes the discussion more complicated. I imagine that this also in part contributed to the glacial pace at which producers accepted that there was a problem.

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#49 Post by Emmanuel Menger » February 16th, 2020, 1:13 pm

Fred C wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 11:06 am
Emmanuel Menger wrote:
February 16th, 2020, 10:36 am
Pierre Morey is releasing every year old vintages from his cellar, kept in pristine conditions. Never had an issue since I hzve started buying in 2010.
Emmanuel, do you know if yours are reconditioned late releases or original bottlings? Some domaines (eg. Fabian Coche) release reconditioned old vintages with new cork and label and the old wines are topped off. In those instances the 1985 taste as fresh as if it were bottled last year because...they were.

I believe premox is like cancer. Not just in the figurative sense but in that it is probably a multi hit model. There is the genetics (the wine or winemaking) that determines a certain level of susceptibility. Then there is environmental/oxidative stress like shipping and storage. Corks and added sulfur may be considered modifiable risk factors to some extent or “antioxidants”. Just my personal hypothesis.

I’ve also found that older Champagne from London or Europe usually tastes fresher than older champagne I purchase in the US.
I cant say as I never asked the question to the domaine. I tend to believe this is original bottling. The domaine used to keep a bit in past years given low volumes. A way to smoothen the financial loss (if any)

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Re: 2011 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment Dinners – Night Two – March 14, 2019 at Drago Centro

#50 Post by John Bashford » February 16th, 2020, 3:28 pm

Thank you Don for providing the most rigorous and unbiased view of the quality issues that blight White Burgundy and for doing it year in, year out.
There is a clear message in your results that closures do matter despite the other many and varied influences on the resilience of wine to oxidation and other faults. Certainly the Diam 30 closures are much harder to extract than many of the corks I have seen in bottles both oxidised and pristine over the last 10-15 years suggesting a better and more resilient seal. I remain perplexed by the failure of good and justifiably respected reviewers like Meadows and Tanzer to simply state the proposed or actual closure of reviewed White Burgundy. Its like reviewing a car without a comment about mechanical reliability ! It would seem uncontroversial and allows the review of what is tasted as a young wine to stand on its own. It would create consumer pressure on recalcitrants like Boillot who really are betraying their terroir and their customers with their failure to acknowledge and change.
Thank you for also addressing the "BS" misinformation on Diam about taint etc that is put about. I would rather take a chance on a rare possible future event than tolerate the real and present danger of TCA and premox. As a Physician this is simple risk assessment and decision making !
Finally while travel across the world ( and in my case to OZ ) has its issues, premox certainly occurs in wines I've had in the UK and in France. A well known German winemaker confided that his regular cases of Leflaive transported in autumn in his car from Puligny to the Mosel were often showing signs of premox the following year at first taste. Keep calling it out and finally most of the makers will follow the lead of those switching to more effective closures.

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