Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

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Michael S. Monie
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Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#1 Post by Michael S. Monie » October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm

Disclaimer: I have only limited experience with mature white Burgs. I opened a 2004 Fevre Domaine Bougros. The color was between a pale yellow and a light golden. The nose was dominated by a light sherry aroma that blew off rather quickly. On the palate, once again a mild Sherry flavor was present. The minerality and acid of Chablis that I love were greatly diminished. I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#2 Post by Josh Grossman » October 30th, 2019, 5:15 pm

I've really just stopped buying chard from anywhere but Oregon.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#3 Post by Anton D » October 30th, 2019, 5:21 pm

I shun white Burgundy now.

I apologize if that seems too iconoclastic.

Well, maybe at restaurants.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#4 Post by David Glasser » October 30th, 2019, 6:13 pm

No change in my appreciation of maturity for white Burgs or any other wines. I just don’t experience it in white Burgs any more since I buy very few and don’t age those I do buy.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#5 Post by Mike Reff » October 30th, 2019, 7:22 pm

I think that the people who make white burgundy have mostly changed their practices and such. I think you are fine with anything from 2010 forward. That being said, I have not really tasted much of older white Burgundy

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#6 Post by Dan Kravitz » October 30th, 2019, 7:31 pm

Yes.

I am really sad that I can't enjoy fine white Burgundy at 10 - 20 years of age. I substitute with Santa Cruz Mountain Chardonnays, Savennieres, Roussannes from the south of France, Alsace and Alto Adige Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris, but of course they are not the same. I love fresh white wine with bottle age and fully secondary character, it's just become so much harder to find.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#7 Post by crickey » October 30th, 2019, 7:38 pm

Fevre is apparently one of the worst in that era (they have switched to Diam, and seem to have much less premox in recent years). I opened a 2004 Fevre Falmur tonight and it was quite oxidized (sour sherry). A pity, because the 2004 Fevre I had last year was excellent and fresh.

That said, yes, the threat of premox had turned me off from collecting white Burgundy, which I consider a considerable personal loss as I really like white Burgundy. I wish I had the capital to shrug at the odds.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#8 Post by David Glasser » October 30th, 2019, 8:45 pm

Mike Reff wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 7:22 pm
I think that the people who make white burgundy have mostly changed their practices and such. I think you are fine with anything from 2010 forward. That being said, I have not really tasted much of older white Burgundy
That may well be. Yet as much as I love well-aged white Burgs, I’m not giving them another shot. Partly lack of confidence, partly my age.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#9 Post by Al Osterheld » October 30th, 2019, 8:54 pm

I definitely changed what I buy (and amount) and how long I keep it.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#10 Post by John Bashford » October 30th, 2019, 11:24 pm

I still have a significant cellar of white burgundy dating back to 1999 - the results remained mixed with some beauties eg 04 Fevre Vaudesir, 07 Sauzet Combettes, 01 Ramonet Morgeot and some disasters that's you 04 Sauzet Combettes, 05 DRC Montrachet, 05 Leflaive Pucelles etc. What I've never had is a premoxed Chardonnay under Stelvin or Diam suggesting that despite all the other concerns ( many with real validity when you speak to vignerons ) this a problem very much lessened by attention to the bottling process.

What is also clear to me is that there is 'premox' and there's 'advanced oxidation' and they look different, smell different, taste different and are different, probably from day 1. What you describe sounds like premox with the dreaded sherry and dead apple taste. Advanced wines still show their origin unless completely gone and can give some pleasure but premox is premox.

Yes, I still buy and age white burg but only under Diam, Stelvin or ( with less enthusiasm ) wax seal. I avoid Boillot, Sauzet ( sadly ) and DRC Monty ( happy wife, happy life ) !

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#11 Post by Robert Grenley » October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am

Yes, you have experienced a premoxed WB, so no, this is not how a 15 year old Chablis in a good vintage should taste. Unfortunately, Fevre, whose wines have always received excellent reviews upon release, has for years been a poster child for premox. Only after they switched to DIAM corks has the incidence decreased...supposedly close to zero?? But then again, some producers such as Leflaive and Jadot, I believe, switched to DIAM in 2014, so premox would only be setting in about now and over the next couple of years, and thus the verdict may still be out. I think Fevre switched all or most by 2010, so unless anyone out there has had premoxed Fevre’s after that, then perhaps the DIAM’s may have “solved”(or at least masked) the problem. i think most (but not all) people think the problem is multifactorial, but it seems like the most reasonable explanation for the variability from bottle to bottle within a case would point to cork variability...perhaps exposing an underlying more vulnerable wine to premox.

In any event, many of us have given up aging WB’s, and if you have not experienced the heights that an aged (but still fresh) WB can reach, you may not fully appreciate how depressing this situation has been for almost 20 years, and how resentful WB fans feel as they pour expensive dead and dying bottles down the drain. One approach is to only buy producers who have switched to DIAM and hope for the best. Some have switched to other varietals, but at least for me there is no good substitute that even comes close. And in my case I just buy lesser WB’s and drink them early...which is a real compromise...but I am considering going the DIAM route.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#12 Post by john stimson » October 31st, 2019, 12:44 pm

Right, Michael. That's not what a non-premoxed 15 year old GC Chablis tastes like. Some would claim that you had an appropriately oxed Chablis at that age, and not pre-moxed, but that's baloney.

If you haven't had experience with aged white burg from before 95, I'm not sure how many folks know what a healthy mature white burg should taste like. Perhaps that's being a little too extreme, as now and then a pristine bottle of 96 or 99 will slip through. But one thing for sure--an appropriately mature bottle of WB, even at 20-30 years of age, does not include sherry or baked browned apple notes.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#13 Post by Rauno E (NZ) » October 31st, 2019, 2:44 pm

Absolutely, though I admit I'm not sure exactly what your question is trying to get at ;)!

Firstly, that Fevre should not yet have had sherry notes. There will be sound bottles of that wine which do not, though to an extent I think '04s are weaker as a vintage than some thought originally. A 1994 tasted in 2009 might have been equally tired - possibly in a different way - and people might not bat an eyelid at that.

Secondly, I appreciate correctly mature WBs that I come across even more now (that they are so rare) than I used to. For example, a lovely '01 Dauvissat Forets recently - not a grand wine, but showing that unique level of development (just moving to tertiary) that only comes after 15-20 years. Because it is so rare, and such a specific taste / flavour / complexity expression I value this very highly.

Thirdly, I keep most wines less long. Funnily enough, I tend to drink my GCs earlier in the main ('04s-'08s recently, some even younger) because I'm more reluctant to take the risk on such rare and pricey bottles. Many 1ers and Village I'm happier taking the risk, with great results from '01s and '02s recently but also the odd dud. In theory, of course, the GCs should age longer than the humble 1ers and Villages but I have absolutely not found this to be the case - with a failure (advanced / oxidising) rate in GCs at least as high as the "lesser" wines. Naturally, every now and again I will have a great bottle of GC that "could have gone another decade" (Carillon '05 BBM the other week) but instead of leaving my last hoping for that perfect maturity I will probably drink it in the next 12 months.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#14 Post by John Danza » October 31st, 2019, 2:51 pm

john stimson wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 12:44 pm
Right, Michael. That's not what a non-premoxed 15 year old GC Chablis tastes like. Some would claim that you had an appropriately oxed Chablis at that age, and not pre-moxed, but that's baloney.

If you haven't had experience with aged white burg from before 95, I'm not sure how many folks know what a healthy mature white burg should taste like. Perhaps that's being a little too extreme, as now and then a pristine bottle of 96 or 99 will slip through. But one thing for sure--an appropriately mature bottle of WB, even at 20-30 years of age, does not include sherry or baked browned apple notes.
I agree with John. I've had properly aged white burgundy from prior to 1995 and it's a great experience. It hardly ever happens these days.

I don't know the basis of Mike Reff's assertion that some change has occurred since 2010, so perhaps he'll elaborate. That would mean that the Burgundians figured out what the problem was. Up until now, they've mostly just denied that a problem existed. If the Burgundians want us consumers back, they'll admit the problem and then tell us what they did to fix it. Otherwise, I'm done dumping expensive white burgundies down the drain.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#15 Post by Markus S » October 31st, 2019, 3:13 pm

Robert Grenley wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am
... One approach is to only buy producers who have switched to DIAM and hope for the best. Some have switched to other varietals, but at least for me there is no good substitute that even comes close.
Sooo how can one tell just by looking at the bottle?
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#16 Post by john stimson » October 31st, 2019, 3:24 pm

You would have to slip the capsule off, or check a website, or ask your retailer, I guess.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#17 Post by Chris Seiber » October 31st, 2019, 3:45 pm

Robert Grenley wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am
And in my case I just buy lesser WB’s and drink them early...which is a real compromise...but I am considering going the DIAM route.
This is what I do, too.

The good news is that White Burgundies drink quite well in their youth these days. I realize they don't develop the most haunting traits of very aged wines, but they're otherwise still complex and tasty. It's definitely not like the old days, when young White Burgs were searingly acidic in their youth.

I generally try to drink mine by about 5-6 years from the vintage date. You still get a few early premox bottles, but it's mostly safe in that time range.

Robert, what are some producers making reasonably priced White Burgs with DIAM these days?

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#18 Post by Chris Seiber » October 31st, 2019, 3:49 pm

Markus S wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:13 pm
Robert Grenley wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am
... One approach is to only buy producers who have switched to DIAM and hope for the best. Some have switched to other varietals, but at least for me there is no good substitute that even comes close.
Sooo how can one tell just by looking at the bottle?
Some people claim they can tell by looking at the bottles. I do agree that you can see a relative difference by comparing the color against a strong light -- I did this with some older white burgs I had a case of at one point, where you could hold two bottles of the same wine up and see that one was darker than the other, and indeed, that did turn out to be the premoxed one of the two.

But I couldn't tell in absolute terms (e.g. looking at a single bottle to see if its premoxed). And even with relative differences, it doesn't mean the lighter one isn't premoxed, it might just be less dark than the other bottle.

Maybe with a lot of trial and error and experience, someone could actually get good at that? I don't know.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#19 Post by john stimson » October 31st, 2019, 4:44 pm

Chris Seiber wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:49 pm
Markus S wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:13 pm
Robert Grenley wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am
... One approach is to only buy producers who have switched to DIAM and hope for the best. Some have switched to other varietals, but at least for me there is no good substitute that even comes close.
Sooo how can one tell just by looking at the bottle?
Some people claim they can tell by looking at the bottles. I do agree that you can see a relative difference by comparing the color against a strong light -- I did this with some older white burgs I had a case of at one point, where you could hold two bottles of the same wine up and see that one was darker than the other, and indeed, that did turn out to be the premoxed one of the two.

But I couldn't tell in absolute terms (e.g. looking at a single bottle to see if its premoxed). And even with relative differences, it doesn't mean the lighter one isn't premoxed, it might just be less dark than the other bottle.

Maybe with a lot of trial and error and experience, someone could actually get good at that? I don't know.
I had presumed that Markus was asking how you could tell the the bottle had a diam cork.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#20 Post by Chris Seiber » October 31st, 2019, 4:52 pm

john stimson wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 4:44 pm


I had presumed that Markus was asking how you could tell the the bottle had a diam cork.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#21 Post by Rauno E (NZ) » October 31st, 2019, 5:09 pm

Chris - I believe most of the Bouchard range is under DIAM. I thought I had heard the same re Jadot, but have not bought or seen them in my market for ages.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#22 Post by alan weinberg » October 31st, 2019, 6:03 pm

Don Cornwell deserves mention in this thread. On two fronts, he has helped tremendously with the issue. He started the oxidized burg wiki and his yearly white Burg dinners are very comprehensive and published on this site, affording much valuable information. He also works behind the scene with conversations and recommendations to many Burgundy winemakers. He has been instrumental in education on many fronts including Diam and other closures. The rest of us gripe; Don actually does something and we owe him a great debt. Chapeau!

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#23 Post by Chris Seiber » October 31st, 2019, 6:20 pm

alan weinberg wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 6:03 pm
Don Cornwell deserves mention in this thread. On two fronts, he has helped tremendously with the issue. He started the oxidized burg wiki and his yearly white Burg dinners are very comprehensive and published on this site, affording much valuable information. He also works behind the scene with conversations and recommendations to many Burgundy winemakers. He has been instrumental in education on many fronts including Diam and other closures. The rest of us gripe; Don actually does something and we owe him a great debt. Chapeau!
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#24 Post by Robert Grenley » November 1st, 2019, 12:09 am

Chris Seiber wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:45 pm
Robert Grenley wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 1:43 am
And in my case I just buy lesser WB’s and drink them early...which is a real compromise...but I am considering going the DIAM route.
This is what I do, too.

The good news is that White Burgundies drink quite well in their youth these days. I realize they don't develop the most haunting traits of very aged wines, but they're otherwise still complex and tasty. It's definitely not like the old days, when young White Burgs were searingly acidic in their youth.

I generally try to drink mine by about 5-6 years from the vintage date. You still get a few early premox bottles, but it's mostly safe in that time range.

Robert, what are some producers making reasonably priced White Burgs with DIAM these days?
My understanding is Bouchard and Jadot and Fevre (for somewhat reasonable) and Leflaive (for completely unreasonable) at this point.
I would be interested in which others, if anyone knows.
I have not checked Don Cornwell's site for a bit to see whether that up to date info is listed there...and I have to look up the latest website address since it changed, unless someone has it at hand.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#25 Post by Robert Grenley » November 1st, 2019, 12:19 am

Found this info on Don Cornwell's Oxidized Burgundy site, I think updated sometime in 2018:

"Domaine William Fevre began bottling a portion of its Chablis (the 1ers) with DIAM in 2007. Starting in 2009, all of the Fevre production except for the grand cru Chablis moved to Diam.

Beginning withe the 2009 vintage, additional producers begin using DIAM closures. Bouchard Pere et Fils (Bouchard and Fevre have common ownership) moved all of their whites to DIAM beginning with the 2009 vintage. Domaine Montille, Deux Montille, and Domaine de Chateau de Puligny Montrachet (all related brands), along with Javillier and Roger Belland have bottled all of their white wines under DIAM starting with the 2009 vintage.

F&L Pillot joined the DiAM parade with the 2010 vintage and Fevre began bottling all of their grand cru Chablis with DIAM corks.

Jadot, Domaine de Bellene (and Roche de Bellene) and Droin (in Chablis) began using DIAM for all of their white wines in the 2011 vintage.

Starting with the 2012 vintage, Olivier Leflaive and Jean-Marc Brocard in Chablis began bottling all of their whites under DIAM closures.

Starting with the 2013 vintage, Lafon, Prieur and Chanson began using DIAM for all of their whites (except, in Lafon's case, the entry level Macon that is sold in Australia, which is bottled under screw cap). Lafon is using DIAM 30 (intended to be used for wines intended for 30 or more years of bottle age). Prieur is using DIAM 10 for the village and premier cru wines and DIAM 30 for the grand crus. Chanson began using the new DIAM 30 on all of Chanson's top wines. Bouchard Pere also immediately started using the new DIAM 30 for all of its whites when they became availble.

Starting with the 2014 vintage, Domaine Leflaive is bottling all of their wines with the new DIAM 30 corks. Daniel Dampt is bottling 90% of their production under DIAM. According to Dampt, the remainder are being bottled either under screwcap or natural cork, depending on the importer's preference.

Starting with the 2016 vintage, Marc Colin and Maison Harbour are bottling their whites under DIAM 30.

Starting with the 2017 vintage, Pernot is bottling its wines under DIAM.

Both Sauzet and Roulot use DIAM closures on their Bourgogne Blanc wines. Raveneau bottled the 2013 Chablis AOC under DIAM."

Great resource...thank you,Don!
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#26 Post by John Morris » November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am

Michael S. Monie wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm
I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#27 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » November 1st, 2019, 3:35 am

Robert Grenley wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 12:19 am
Found this info on Don Cornwell's Oxidized Burgundy site, I think updated sometime in 2018:

"Domaine William Fevre began bottling a portion of its Chablis (the 1ers) with DIAM in 2007. Starting in 2009, all of the Fevre production except for the grand cru Chablis moved to Diam.

Beginning withe the 2009 vintage, additional producers begin using DIAM closures. Bouchard Pere et Fils (Bouchard and Fevre have common ownership) moved all of their whites to DIAM beginning with the 2009 vintage. Domaine Montille, Deux Montille, and Domaine de Chateau de Puligny Montrachet (all related brands), along with Javillier and Roger Belland have bottled all of their white wines under DIAM starting with the 2009 vintage.

F&L Pillot joined the DiAM parade with the 2010 vintage and Fevre began bottling all of their grand cru Chablis with DIAM corks.

Jadot, Domaine de Bellene (and Roche de Bellene) and Droin (in Chablis) began using DIAM for all of their white wines in the 2011 vintage.

Starting with the 2012 vintage, Olivier Leflaive and Jean-Marc Brocard in Chablis began bottling all of their whites under DIAM closures.

Starting with the 2013 vintage, Lafon, Prieur and Chanson began using DIAM for all of their whites (except, in Lafon's case, the entry level Macon that is sold in Australia, which is bottled under screw cap). Lafon is using DIAM 30 (intended to be used for wines intended for 30 or more years of bottle age). Prieur is using DIAM 10 for the village and premier cru wines and DIAM 30 for the grand crus. Chanson began using the new DIAM 30 on all of Chanson's top wines. Bouchard Pere also immediately started using the new DIAM 30 for all of its whites when they became availble.

Starting with the 2014 vintage, Domaine Leflaive is bottling all of their wines with the new DIAM 30 corks. Daniel Dampt is bottling 90% of their production under DIAM. According to Dampt, the remainder are being bottled either under screwcap or natural cork, depending on the importer's preference.

Starting with the 2016 vintage, Marc Colin and Maison Harbour are bottling their whites under DIAM 30.

Starting with the 2017 vintage, Pernot is bottling its wines under DIAM.

Both Sauzet and Roulot use DIAM closures on their Bourgogne Blanc wines. Raveneau bottled the 2013 Chablis AOC under DIAM."

Great resource...thank you,Don!
And FWIW, I have had two bottles of 2010 Fevre Bougros over the last couple of months. Both were pristine.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#28 Post by Mark Golodetz » November 1st, 2019, 4:17 am

I too gave up WB some years ago. Plenty of alternatives.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#29 Post by Jayson Cohen » November 1st, 2019, 6:37 am

Appreciation has not changed though buying habits did. Price was also a factor.

I have also back-bought WB at auction for certain wines where I did not experience premox 15+ years after vintage. There are some buys out there for the patient.

Respectfully disagree with Mark that there are real alternatives to WB. There are certainly different and profound and complex white wines that age remarkably well; they are just not WB.

And I’m nearly certain I have a bunch of premoxed 2004 Fevres that I’ve been ignoring.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#30 Post by Markus S » November 1st, 2019, 6:47 am

john stimson wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 4:44 pm
Chris Seiber wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:49 pm
Markus S wrote:
October 31st, 2019, 3:13 pm


Sooo how can one tell just by looking at the bottle?
Some people claim they can tell by looking at the bottles. I do agree that you can see a relative difference by comparing the color against a strong light -- I did this with some older white burgs I had a case of at one point, where you could hold two bottles of the same wine up and see that one was darker than the other, and indeed, that did turn out to be the premoxed one of the two.

But I couldn't tell in absolute terms (e.g. looking at a single bottle to see if its premoxed). And even with relative differences, it doesn't mean the lighter one isn't premoxed, it might just be less dark than the other bottle.

Maybe with a lot of trial and error and experience, someone could actually get good at that? I don't know.
I had presumed that Markus was asking how you could tell the the bottle had a diam cork.
Yes, you're correct John. There are so many producers (and new ones all the time) that it is hard to keep up with what type of cork they use. I happen upon them by accident when opening them. There is no indication on the label or capsule that the cork is different, unlike the screw-caps or glass-locks. If DIAM is such a superior method of closure, you would think the company name would go somewhere on the bottle.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#31 Post by Markus S » November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am

John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am
Michael S. Monie wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm
I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#32 Post by Jayson Cohen » November 1st, 2019, 7:18 am

Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am
Michael S. Monie wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm
I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
No.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#33 Post by Markus S » November 1st, 2019, 8:12 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 7:18 am
Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am


Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
No.
Always willing to change my mind if you want to open some examples for me. [cheers.gif]
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#34 Post by Greg K » November 1st, 2019, 8:16 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:37 am
Appreciation has not changed though buying habits did. Price was also a factor.

I have also back-bought WB at auction for certain wines where I did not experience premox 15+ years after vintage. There are some buys out there for the patient.

Respectfully disagree with Mark that there are real alternatives to WB. There are certainly different and profound and complex white wines that age remarkably well; they are just not WB.

And I’m nearly certain I have a bunch of premoxed 2004 Fevres that I’ve been ignoring.
Same for me. I'm willing to backfill certain producers that did not experience significant premox issues and have been reasonably (though not entirely) successful.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#35 Post by Greg K » November 1st, 2019, 8:17 am

Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am
Michael S. Monie wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm
I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
I suspect Jayson is also thinking of Chenin (which I'm much less partial to), but my response would be to try some late 80s Leflaive.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#36 Post by Mike Evans » November 1st, 2019, 8:55 am

Jayson Cohen wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 7:18 am
Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am


Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
No.
A well-aged white Burgundy should show some degree of oxidized notes, if by oxidized notes one means honeyed color and honey, nuttiness, caramel, butterscotch, and similar flavors and aromas. I find that many people who started drinking during the premox era tend to mistake any sign of oxidation as premox and not as a natural and desirable part of a wine’s evolution. A key difference is that with a well-aged wine, there is freshness and vibrancy along with the caramel or nuttiness.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#37 Post by Markus S » November 1st, 2019, 10:05 am

Greg K wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 8:17 am
Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am


Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
I suspect Jayson is also thinking of Chenin (which I'm much less partial to), but my response would be to try some late 80s Leflaive.
I Did have some late-80's Lefaive (all 1ers) but drank them all by the mid-90s. [cry.gif]
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#38 Post by Mel Knox » November 1st, 2019, 10:31 am

I am drinking my Cote de Beaune whites much earlier now. The prices have risen so much I am buying fewer.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#39 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » November 1st, 2019, 2:12 pm

Having already committed to cellaring them, the premox phenonemon, if anything , has increased my appreciation of White Burgundy. Though I've had my share of premox (and not as much as I expected), it has helped me realize how great an aged (your criteria, but 15+ years) offers a great experience and wonderful payoff. The flawed bottles don't affect that "appreciation". They do piss me off, etc. But, I'm really glad to have a stock.

I am firmly convinced that the culprit is the cork: that they have been kilned irregularly and in many cases, way too much (too rigid) to hold a good seal at the bottle neck. Nothing more complicated. Which is why I find the diam issue of interest. But, in a way, that preserves them rather than allows them to age...a different process.

I stopped buying in 2007, at my wife's urging and with no regrets (other than I've also lost much of my interest and, certainly haven't kept current. Having a superb , aged WB (including Dauvissat Chablis)....only makes me realize how screwed most of us consumers have been. And, the cork industry seems to have avoided all roundups and left the artisanally structured WB industry holding the bag and blaming themselves.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#40 Post by John Morris » November 1st, 2019, 2:18 pm

Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:31 am
Michael S. Monie wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:01 pm
I'm really not sure if this is the way this 15 year old wine should taste or not. And if it is, I'm pretty sure my preference would be 5 years younger.
Sounds like a classic case of premox. [cry.gif]
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
In addition to a lot of Riesling (including top dry ones), Vouvray and Condrieu often can age more than 15 years. And, once upon a time, Chablis and White Burgundy.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#41 Post by Wes Barton » November 1st, 2019, 5:11 pm

John Morris wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 2:18 pm
Markus S wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 6:50 am
But isn't 15 years pushing it for a white wine that isn't labeled "riesling"? I sort of assume some whites I open over 10 years of age outside of certain categories will begin to slow down and fade a little, with some of that giving various degrees of oxidized notes.
In addition to a lot of Riesling (including top dry ones), Vouvray and Condrieu often can age more than 15 years. And, once upon a time, Chablis and White Burgundy.
Plenty of white varieties can age well. It's as much about the the winemaking and the site. Some less common grapes, like Fiano, Falanghina and Carricante are known for aging well.

People have noted in this thread that the WB winemaking changed, as in to drinking well on release, but everyone is looking at the closure as the problem? It's more like the changes in winemaking made the high degree of variability of cork permeability an issue. Using DIAM and the like is a quality control measure that allows producers to continue making more vulnerable wines. I'll just say some producers have figured out how to continue their style without needing to switch closures to keep the wines safe.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#42 Post by Mel Knox » November 1st, 2019, 6:14 pm

Wes makes some good points. Technical corks May be part of the solution but corks weren’t the cause of the problem.

I still appreciate well matured white Burgundy but I am nervous about the whole situation
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#43 Post by Robert Grenley » November 1st, 2019, 11:22 pm

Mark Golodetz wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 4:17 am
I too gave up WB some years ago. Plenty of alternatives.
I haven't found any.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#44 Post by Robert Grenley » November 1st, 2019, 11:25 pm

D@vid Bu3ker wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 3:35 am
Robert Grenley wrote:
November 1st, 2019, 12:19 am
Found this info on Don Cornwell's Oxidized Burgundy site, I think updated sometime in 2018:

"Domaine William Fevre began bottling a portion of its Chablis (the 1ers) with DIAM in 2007. Starting in 2009, all of the Fevre production except for the grand cru Chablis moved to Diam.

Beginning withe the 2009 vintage, additional producers begin using DIAM closures. Bouchard Pere et Fils (Bouchard and Fevre have common ownership) moved all of their whites to DIAM beginning with the 2009 vintage. Domaine Montille, Deux Montille, and Domaine de Chateau de Puligny Montrachet (all related brands), along with Javillier and Roger Belland have bottled all of their white wines under DIAM starting with the 2009 vintage.

F&L Pillot joined the DiAM parade with the 2010 vintage and Fevre began bottling all of their grand cru Chablis with DIAM corks.

Jadot, Domaine de Bellene (and Roche de Bellene) and Droin (in Chablis) began using DIAM for all of their white wines in the 2011 vintage.

Starting with the 2012 vintage, Olivier Leflaive and Jean-Marc Brocard in Chablis began bottling all of their whites under DIAM closures.

Starting with the 2013 vintage, Lafon, Prieur and Chanson began using DIAM for all of their whites (except, in Lafon's case, the entry level Macon that is sold in Australia, which is bottled under screw cap). Lafon is using DIAM 30 (intended to be used for wines intended for 30 or more years of bottle age). Prieur is using DIAM 10 for the village and premier cru wines and DIAM 30 for the grand crus. Chanson began using the new DIAM 30 on all of Chanson's top wines. Bouchard Pere also immediately started using the new DIAM 30 for all of its whites when they became availble.

Starting with the 2014 vintage, Domaine Leflaive is bottling all of their wines with the new DIAM 30 corks. Daniel Dampt is bottling 90% of their production under DIAM. According to Dampt, the remainder are being bottled either under screwcap or natural cork, depending on the importer's preference.

Starting with the 2016 vintage, Marc Colin and Maison Harbour are bottling their whites under DIAM 30.

Starting with the 2017 vintage, Pernot is bottling its wines under DIAM.

Both Sauzet and Roulot use DIAM closures on their Bourgogne Blanc wines. Raveneau bottled the 2013 Chablis AOC under DIAM."

Great resource...thank you,Don!
And FWIW, I have had two bottles of 2010 Fevre Bougros over the last couple of months. Both were pristine.
And I had a bottle of 2011 Fevre Bougros a couple of weeks ago that was also pristine. Making me rethink my moratorium...especially now that they are under DIAM.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#45 Post by Michael S. Monie » November 2nd, 2019, 4:22 pm

I opened a 2002 Domaine Michel Niellon Chassagne-Montrachet Les Champgains 1er this evening. What a beautiful wine. Some honeyed-nuttiness but plenty of citrus and a good vibrancy. Not a hint of sherry. I now have a clarity of what an aged WB should be like.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#46 Post by Kris Patten » November 2nd, 2019, 7:14 pm

Outside of trophy Red Burgs, aged whites deliver higher highs than aged reds for me, so I will continue a careful hunt for aged White Burg glory!
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#47 Post by Robert Grenley » November 2nd, 2019, 11:55 pm

Kris Patten wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 7:14 pm
Outside of trophy Red Burgs, aged whites deliver higher highs than aged reds for me, so I will continue a careful hunt for aged White Burg glory!
In which case are you:
1. Buying wines from 1993 and prior?
2. Buying wines and drinking them before they reach 5-6 years of age?
3. Buying wines and aging as you did in the “old days”, as in 10 years or more, and accepting that a certain percentage will be advanced or dead?
4. Buying wines (and overpaying) from producers you feel have a lower incidence (Raveneau, ?older Coche, pre-?2002 Leflaive, ?any others)?
5. Buying wines from producers bottling under DIAMs?

Not being sarcastic...just wondering what a careful hunt means for you, since I stopped buying years ago in frustration, and I miss it.
But I do not find there are even barely equivalent alternatives, nor do I think WB’s consumed before their 5th birthday are worth their hefty price tags, nor do I relish simply carrying on as if all was well and pouring a number of expensive wines down the drain.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#48 Post by Kris Patten » November 3rd, 2019, 7:54 am

Robert Grenley wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 11:55 pm
Kris Patten wrote:
November 2nd, 2019, 7:14 pm
Outside of trophy Red Burgs, aged whites deliver higher highs than aged reds for me, so I will continue a careful hunt for aged White Burg glory!
In which case are you:
1. Buying wines from 1993 and prior?
2. Buying wines and drinking them before they reach 5-6 years of age?
3. Buying wines and aging as you did in the “old days”, as in 10 years or more, and accepting that a certain percentage will be advanced or dead?
4. Buying wines (and overpaying) from producers you feel have a lower incidence (Raveneau, ?older Coche, pre-?2002 Leflaive, ?any others)?
5. Buying wines from producers bottling under DIAMs?

Not being sarcastic...just wondering what a careful hunt means for you, since I stopped buying years ago in frustration, and I miss it.
But I do not find there are even barely equivalent alternatives, nor do I think WB’s consumed before their 5th birthday are worth their hefty price tags, nor do I relish simply carrying on as if all was well and pouring a number of expensive wines down the drain.
A little bit of all above, and probably less risk averse than those that bought heavy in the mid-90s - 00s and really got hammered by POX. Don't get me wrong, I have poured Monty's, Chevy's, Ramonet's, Leflaive's and others down the drain, absolutely infuriating.

My strategy is vintage (so far 2008, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2017 in recent years), producer, closure, quality level mostly 1er), vineyard. Buy more 1er and GC Chablis than in the past too, but it doesn't hit highs that Puligny, Chassagne and Meursault do for my palate.

Then as I said, with the above, I am up for some risk at my age, but think I have limited what I can short of not buying at all. Raveneau, Coche and Leflaive all fall out of my price range for 99.9% of wines.

My biggest fear is will they age the same as they did in past and deliver same highs with new closures and techniques? Odd thought.
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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#49 Post by Subu Ramachandran » November 3rd, 2019, 12:36 pm

To answer the OP's question: yes. Premox, with combination of prices and a change in palate. WB purchase and planned purchase has diminished significantly. I now prefer dry rieslings and grower champs; for they age better, I love them much more and they are far cheaper.

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Re: Has Premox Affected Your Appreciation Of Maturity?

#50 Post by Ian Sutton » November 3rd, 2019, 1:53 pm

Anton D wrote:
October 30th, 2019, 5:21 pm
I shun white Burgundy now.
Ditto (just as I was about to start exploring). I still buy Macon wines, which seem to mature just as well as before, but barring the very occasional Chablis, I simply don't buy enough to have anything (white) mature in the rest of Burg.
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