- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Corton Domaine Prince Florent de Merode
Strong tannins. Good alcohol. Bright with a bit of tart (almost like salt). Cherry core. A bit 1-dimensional (due to the front-and-center fruit) but very enjoyable. I would bring this to a big cab dinner as a good alternative; a more velvet hammer if you will.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Echezeaux
Not very giving on the nose, somewhat tight on the palate. Light-to-medium weight with good structure. Some heat on the finish - feeling more of the alcohol on this one.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Grands-Echezeaux
More luxurious and robust than the Echezeaux but not out of balance. Good control throughout the wine. Not a ton of alcohol or tannins but it is there underneath. This wine lands a lot of material well.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Richebourg
Next level from the first 4 (C, Ech, Gr Ech, RSV) and probably my favorite on the day of all 7. This is a gregarious wine. Explosive flavors, showing many levels of fruit and some spices which add to the dimensionality of the wine. While obviously shiny and new, it didn't feel immature. Great stuff.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée St. Vivant
This is a different level of complexity from the Corton, Ech, and GE. The RSV floral character is there with a bit more structure and a little spice. I found the mix led to a two-staged flavor crescendo that was quite pleasing. The increased power of this wine does lead me to want to put it in a different weight class which, in a way, detracts from the classic elegance this was has come to settle into over the past 10 or so years.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti La Tâche
For many in the room, this was there favorite of 2018 lineup, while for me I think the Richebourg was better on the day, though the La Tache hints at future greatness. The wine is at a perfect pitch: not out of balance, the fruit (while it will need time to integrate) feels like it well woven, and the layers of flavor feel streamlined. Great texture on the mouth: the power of the vintage does not interrupt the smoothness of the wine. Beautiful.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-Conti
In a word, I found this wine mystical. It left me pondering much longer than any of the other wines in the lineup; a spell of time only matched by the length of the finish. On the nose, I found it almost savory. It was like a bit of salted butter on top of a warm brioche. Unexpected. The flavors and texture were just sublime with a bit of everything floral and spice supported by nice tannins. A joyful and contemplative experience.
- 2018 Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Montrachet
The first thing that came to mind when I tasted this wine was Riesling: it has glycerin sensibility that is the hallmark of dry Rieslings without the heavy bout of acidity. This was as lot of fun and showed the rich opulence Montrachet is known for with an unexpected flavor profile. Fun.
Given the quality of the wines and the stage of their development, I am hesitant to "score" them. Also, if you know me, I think scoring is extremely hard to do well so I wouldn't take these numbers as very comparable to other wines (for example, I am sure I've rated a wine 96pts before that I thought wasn't as good as the Corton, for example). That said, here is my attempt (today / potential):
Corton (93 / 94-95)
Ech (92 / 94)
GE (94 / 95)
RSV (93 / 94)
Rich (97 / 97)
La Tache (95 / 98)
Romanee Conti (?? / 99?)
Montrachet (93 / ??)