How to prep 96 Fourrier & Leroy

Has anyone had 96 Leroy Latricieres or 96 Fourrier Griotte? I am looking for decant advice.



Step 1. Invite me up to Baltimore.

There’s no need to decant the Fourrier, it should be ready to go-but just in case put the opening of the bottle to your ear after opening; if you hear a fizzing noise then replace the cork, give it a good shake and release any expelled CO2. I often listen to my wine these days.

That Leroy is really young. Id highly recommend a good deal of air

wouldn’t do that till I decanted it, as there may be a lot of sediment. I’ve got some 96 Fourrier Griotte–will try and remember to look at a bottle.

I think the best approach is to always take the guesswork out of the equation. About six hours (at least) before you plan to serve the wines, open them and take a very small taste. If the wine is ready to go then just put the cork back in. If it tastes tight and un-giving it is going to need some amount of air to open up.

My general philosophy at this point is to start with gentle aeration and then only escalate if the wine doesn’t seem to be moving fast enough. The reason is that the more forceful the aeration, the more of the aromatics that will be lost. To start off with just pout out a few ounces to increase to surface area of the wine to maybe a half dollar size. Check back in a few hours and if the wine seems to be opening up at a good pace you can just sit tight until its time to drink. If it isn’t really budging you may need to pour out some more and increase the wine surface area in the bottle. If it still isn’t moving or just seems so tight that half measures aren’t going to work, the next level of escalation is to gently pour half the bottle into a carafe-like decanter. That will speed things along. The last and most desperate action is to fully decant and maybe even give it a shake after getting rid of the sediment.

This may seem like a lot of work but to me the most interesting thing about burgundy are the wonderful aromas and its worth preserving them as much as possible. And anyway, the first stage of just pouring out a few ounces usually does the trick.

The interesting and of course as yet unanswered question with this new generation of undegassed wines is whether or not they actually need their sediment getting rid of.

I agree with Berry’s approach - I always prefer the slow-O routine unless the wine is so young or so big that it requires an inordinate amount of time, then the various options to speed things up are in order. A decant, for me, is the very last option. I find that slow-O-ed Burgs have much better vitality and complexity taste-wise! The older they get, the more all of this matters. '96s should still be rather youthful, partly because of the style of the vintage, so I think a full 6 hours of slow-O, or even more!, will be needed for best effect.

All, thanks.

Berry and Paul,

Thanks for the info. Your recommendation is my normal approach also. However, I am new to Burgundy and am not sure that I can predict how a red Burg will open up based on a taste.

I’m more excited than anyone else reading this thred. Now if my chauffeur would just show up…

You can simplify it: If they wine tastes tight and fruitless pour out and do a slow ox. Check back two hours later and if it hasn’t budged at all then up the aeration. The wine will tell you what it needs by how tight and fruitless it is.

I’d agree with Charlie. The 96 Leroy’s I’ve had over the past 6-8 months have all be pretty firm. Very VERY good, but firm.

Love it.

Sometimes, especially with something that is young (and not too special), I will use slow-O for some time and then if a small taste still seems undeveloped I will decant half into a small 375ml carafe I have. Then wait another hour or so, keeping both identically cool, and then taste back and forth, for educational purposes! :slight_smile:


I wouldn’t be that mean to anyone… I was visiting B’more for the weekend, and
Tom was picking me up to drink those wines. Although, reading that post not knowing that, it was kind of funny. [basic-smile.gif]


I thought you were being sarcastic. You Tucson guys are too nice. Must be all the sun. :slight_smile:

checked a b of 96 Fourrier Griotte and there is indeed a fair amount of sediment, some good chunks, too–I wouldn’t shake up an undecanted bottle. Might double decant if there is some fizz.

I thought JM Fourrier didnt start his trademark carbonated method of winemaking until after 97?

A 96 CSJ I had some weeks back was more or less pop and pour (I think I opened it 1 hour before heading to restaurant and put the cork back in)