take your party of six and each sit at a different table! Score more trophies.
Have you tried “Le Grill de Nuits-Saint-Georges”?
Excellent (roasted) meat (but limited wine list).
It’s run by the former chef of L’Auberge du Coteau.
That method of dining was discussed Alan.
Haven’t been Khiem. I will put it on the list for next year.
Love reading your notes and trip notes Jeremy - keep 'em coming!!!
Louis-Michel Liger-Belair is a thoroughly engaging fellow, who just happens to make some of the greatest wines on the planet. It is always fun to taste with him and this year particularly so. There was a contingent from America and our group of Aussies, making for a kind of mini United Nations of wine. One of the ‘Septic Tanks’ was quite loud and funny, although I don’t think he was trying to be funny. He was asking Louis-Michel about a ‘bladder press’. Louis-Michel asked what that was. I was trying to be funny and said ‘its what happens when you need to take a petite pee pee’. The Aussies laughed, Americans didn’t laugh, and I don’t think Louis-Michel heard me.
We kicked off the tasting with a very fine white.
2014 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Clos des Grandes Vignes: Has delicious white peach fruit. There’s a lemon sherbet quality to the wine and it has excellent shape and length.
We then moved through a selection of outstanding 2016 reds. Louis-Michel recounted a quote that Henri Jayer once told him, ‘there is no sun in the cellar’. Meaning, get your fruit ripe on the vine. His ‘16’s are perfectly ripe.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Aux Cras: This vineyard was planted between 1921 and 1923. There are complex aromatics of sweet berry, menthol, sarsaparilla root and earth. It is full, deep and velvety, building through the palate and finishing quite savoury. Lovely balance.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Clos des Grandes Vignes: This vineyard was devastated by frost in ’16 and the yields were so small that there will not be a commercial release. It is super intense with dark cherry, floral spice and earthy aromas and flavours. Tannins are sweet and the long finishes is flecked with minerals.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Aux Reignots: It draws you in with its intoxicating perfume. I commented that there was plenty of Asian spice to the wine and Louis-Michel said he put it in there because he has a good market in Asia. I didn’t notice any Polish spice. There’s a suggestion of menthol and the dark cherry fruit has great intensity. The palate is silky and detailed, and it has concentration and phenomenal length without any heaviness.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Clos Vougeot, Grand Cru: Very much red fruited with some aniseed spice. It is tangy and rich with good underlying structure and plenty of muscle to the back-end.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Echezeaux, Grand Cru: Intoxicating nose of Chinese 5 spice powder and perfectly ripe red and black fruits. There was a grating of fresh ginger too. There’s great volume and intensity in the mouth with serious mid-palate sap and a super long finish tasting of salty plum.
2016 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair La Romanée, Grand Cru: Great complexity, finesse, depth and clarity. You get notes of pomegranate, aniseed, cherry and mineral. The palate has a creaminess to it but you feel every rocky bump of the wine. It is silky, voluminous and ethereal, with great mineral drive and a finish that really fans out. Brilliant!
Louis-Michel was keen to check in and see how his 2012’s are coming along. So were we.
2012 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Vosne-Romanée La Colombiere: As one of our American friends put it ‘this is ready to drive straight off the lot’. It is expressive with plenty of spice and earth and a very pretty scent of rose petals. Red berry fruits envelop the mouth and it is plump with mineral cut.
2012 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Aux Reignots: Quite compact, tight and intense. There’s a whiff of ginger, compost, red currant and rose petal. It is silky in the mouth with great line. It builds and is expansive on the finish. Fabulous wine but needs a few more years in the cellar.
2012 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair Echezeaux, Grand Cru: More open than the Reignots. Expressive nose of Asian spice, cherry, pomegranate and raspberry. It is rich and creamy but with plenty of mineral detail. The finish is super long.
2012 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair La Romanée, Grand Cru: This close to perfection. The nose draws you in with the perfume of rose petals, aniseed, black cherries and fresh lilies. It has a cool centre and is complex, layered and expansive. There’s latent power, exquisite balance and proportion a lacy, sensual texture and length to burn. Simply wonderful.
Louis-Michel was on a roll and decided we should finish the tasting with an ’08.
2008 Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair La Romanée, Grand Cru: There’s a hint of forest floor development sneaking in. It has plenty of berry, cherry and earth. The palate is super spicy, with a cool mineral centre. Fruits are deliciously crunchy and the finish is stony and long.
Sounds like a nice roll to be part of!
urologists would have laughed. Urine good company with us and pee jokes.
You should have been there Alan. I’m sure you would have laughed.
Nice to read you are just the middle man converting the La Romanee in to a pee.
Wine is only ever on loan Sanjay.
Alan could claim tax deduction for his bladder washouts
Yeah, you were with the wrong Americans.
I have yet to try a Ligier-Belair La Romanée, though luckily have been on hand for some stunning mature examples from other stewards.
bought a b of Bouchard 01 La Romanée recently and then read it sucked. Anybody w experience?
Given the phrase ‘sunshine in a bag’ is often used to describe the sugar used in chaptalization, I wonder if there’s some ludic humor at work here from Henri / Louis-Michel…
By far my favorite tasting of the whole trip!
Louis-Michel is a great bloke, very funny, but his wines are just out of this world, IMHO right up with the absolute very best wines for their level(s) made today (and yes, La Romanee is up there with La Tache and Romanee Conti, and maybe even better!)
The '16’s were superb, shame the amounts are so low. Across the range the Reignots stood out, this is one wine that really is serious GC quality, and the '16 was a cracker (as was the '12)! It was also interesting to see how approachable almost all of these were young, so silky and with such lovely poise and balance, yet more than enough stuffing to really age. Delicious wines!
The Echezeaux were likewise very, very good (easily amongst the very best Ech. made), whilst the '12 La Romanee was up there in my 5 all time great wines, this is a bottle that in 10-20 years will be simply magical - a truly stunning wine and easily my WOTY for 2018 so far!
Liger to me is probably the best red burgundy producer when considering the complete range of village to grand cru. No real misses. Probably cause the house style is so strong (and delicious).
I don’t know that wine, but the 97 sang beautifully 8-9 months ago…
Enjoying your posts Jeremy.
Le Soufflot looks great, do you need to book or are “walk-ins” a possibility?
LA ROMANÉE 2001 was the last vintage vinified by Regis FOREY and elevated (and bottled) by Bouchard P&F.
Louis-Michel Liger-Belair had nothing to do with it. It is however a good to very good LR, but in the usual (slightly) rustic style of Forey (+Bouchard).
LM Liger-Belair took over the La Romanée-vineyard with the 2002 vintage.
He worked the vineyard and vinified the wine from 2002 onwards.
However from 2002 to 2005 he still had to transfer 50% to Bouchard P&F - usually in their own new barrels with a slightly different toasting. So there are two different bottlings 2002-2005, but according to Louis-Michel the differences are not huge.
Since 2006 there is only ONE LR-bottling by Comte Liger-Belair.
BTW: the 1997 LR (Bouchard) is a fine effort for the vintage, fully mature and delicious, if slightly lacking the class of a better vintage (like 1999).
However all vintages from 2002 onwards are a step up …