2000 Leflaive Chevalier, 1999 Ponsot CdlR

Last night Alan Weinberg and I, along with our wives, met at Michael’s on Naples in Long Beach for dinner and conversation. As is always the case, we get to dig deeply into our cellars for great bottles and this night was no exception. I brought a pristine bottle of the 2000 Leflaive Chevalier. The fill on the bottle had the smallest air bubble and looked like it was just filled. On opening the color was light for a 15+ year old white burg, but showed some age. At the beginning the nose was tight with white flowers and toast, with a full bodied, long lasting finish. This went down far too easily because the last few sips I saved for a couple hours showed an even more expressive nose with some honey and caramel notes. It never seems like white burgundies show their best until after a couple hours so I guess a decant would have helped this a bit. But this was a top notch effort from Leflaive and Pierre Morey with several years to go.

Alan sent me a list of his red Burgundies to choose from and of all the greats he sent, I chose either the '99 Ponsot Clos de la Roche or the '93 Jean Gros Richebourg. Alan told me to decide which to open and I picked the Ponsot. As with most of the wines from the 1999 vintage, the color was dark and almost opaque with no browning at the rim. The nose was of ripe, dark fruits and earth. The wine was dense and showed great length with so much promise for the future, although it was an excellent bottle and my first from this vintage. This should become a beautiful aged Burgundy and last for many years. Thanks, Alan.

This was our third time at Michael’s and the food and ambience were perfect for a great night of food, wine, and conversation. We will be back again soon.

Drinking well Jerry and Alan! For Ponsot, how are his Clos St Denis compared to his Clos de la Roche? I’ve never had an example. Any experiences?


Love that 99 ponsot cdlroche. Definitely needs quite a bit of time though.

2000 is a splendid year for white Burg, glad your Leflaive showed well Jerry. That '99 Ponsot is brilliant.

Best Regards

Well done guys. Curious on the 99 Ponsot. I’ve got a few, and the only note I have is from 2012 and says: " So young it’s almost painful". Is it time yet, or best to wait?
As an aside Jerry, I’m listening to an old Joanne Brackeen CD and drinking 05 Bonneau Martray CC as I type. Did you ever come across her in your playing/travels? A great player.

Brad - the 99 Ponsot was young but certainly approachable. I think this bottle was from a fairly recent purchase of a case that we split. This bottle was in great shape and it was certainly worth opening to try it. One of the first 99 GC’s I’ve had - I’ve been trying to let them sleep as long as possible.

Joanne is a great player but unfortunately haven’t had a chance to work with her or hear her live.

I had the 1999 as part of a vertical late last year, and it was showing incredibly young, but clearly one of the best wines that night. Judging by the 1990 and 1989 both in the first stages of maturity, I would give it another ten years before opening a bottle.

Wow, good for Alan. Those are both killer.

Sounds lovely. Thanks for sharing.

it is always fun to go to dinner with Jerry and Cindy. She has a wry sense of humor that I love and Jerry is, well, Jerry, a great guy with a wealth of knowledge and a lot of fun. Jerry cooks better than most restaurants. Last night was a good meal and the wines really shined.

The Chevalier had a lovely nose and really tightened up after a few minutes, really showing an acidic spine but in a regal way–fruit was ripe and restrained, the wine a decade from maturity and able to hold a lot longer. Really a brilliant wine.

Ponsot was surprisingly open, layered and rich, a deep wine that was quite balanced and complex, but still very young. Ripe tannins were hidden behind the fruit, plums and black fruit. Wish I had a lot more, but there will be other wines.

Haven’t had the Clos St. Denis VV enough to comment.

I’ll echo the comments so far - it’s at least 5 years away and probably more like the decade Mark suggests. The '93 is drinking well, and the '95 just started to come around. We just had a '99 Ponsot Chapelle-Chambertin, which is typically faster maturing than the CdlR, and it was still at least a couple / three years away. Pretty easy to say the '99 (and probably '02) is destined for greatness though!