Our 2012 visit to Beaune for grands jours de bourgogne

Admittedly, its been a year since we visited, but we left with many good memories, and i recently came across our tasting notes, which I thought that I’d share. Opinions … everyone has one, so here are mine.

Schedule was as follows;
Monday 19 / 03
• 1 - Les Portes d’Or de la Bourgogne / BIVB Chablis Grand Auxerrois Le petit Pontigny - 1 rue de Chichée 89800 CHABLIS
Tuesday 20 / 03
• 2 - Joyaux en Côte de Nuits / Maison de Marsannay Route des Grands Crus 21160 MARSANNAY-LA-CÔTE
• 4 - De Chambolle à Morey / Grange de Saulx 21640 GILLY-LÈS-CÎTEAUX
• 5 - Nuits d’Antan / Halles de Nuits 21700 NUITS-ST-GEORGES
Wednesday 21 / 03
• 6 à 9 - Symphonie Mâconnaise - L’Autre Bourgogne - Quinté “Sens” - Beaune Couleurs Vins / Palais des Congrès 19 avenue Charles de Gaulle 21200 BEAUNE
Thursday 22 / 03
• 10 - Au Coeur de la Bourgogne / Tonnellerie de Mercurey Rue de la Rolline 71640 MERCUREY
Friday 23 / 03
• 11 - Terroirs de Corton / Salle Municipale LADOIX-SERRIGNY
• 12 - Salon des Jeunes Talents / Comédie du Vin 12 boulevard Jules Ferry 21200 BEAUNE
• 13 - Pommard rime avec Art / Château de Pommard 15 rue Marey Monge POMMARD 21630
• 14 - Trio inédit en Côte de Beaune / Tonnellerie Damy Chemin Champs Lin 21190 MEURSAULT
• 15 - Des Maranges au Montrachet par Santenay et Saint-Aubin / Château de Chassagne-Montrachet 5 rue du Château 21190 CHASSAGNE-MONTRACHET Château de Santenay 1 rue du Château 21590 SANTENAY

So on the monday, we did 10-12h30 at Chablis which is 1h30 drive from Beaune.

We liked a lot and they are here in the US. Chablis Grand Cru Le Clos 2009 and Chablis Grand Cru Blanchot 2009 were superb and much better than 1er Cru, Chablis, and Petit-Chablis. Grand Cru were longer on palate, fatter, big aroma/perfumed nose, had legs with nice hints of flora. 1er Cru Mont de Milieu was quite good as it tasted of honey and was quite smooth. Base 2010 Chablis was acidic, still rich and fumey and worth purchasing. They also had a wonderful Sauvignon Blanc.

2.Domaine de Pisse-Loup - Very nice owner who also does a Cahors, but we did not take him up on his offer to visit his winery to taste.
They presented Chablis and Petit-Chablis with one of the Chablis hand picked while rest of the wines were machine picked grapes. Quite high acidity but plenty of flavour and we liked the wines. No current US importer.
3.Domaine de la Tour - Was delicate, light, fruity, but we did not love.
4. Domaine Elise Villiers - Bourgogne Vezelay was Jurassic, fruit forward, lively and we liked a lot. She gave us prices (€5.10 to €5.40 a bottle). One of few female vignerons presenting, and very good value. Her Bourgogne Vezelay Le Clos Chardonnay was quite oaky, fruity, complex. US importer is Vintage 59.
5. Domaine Barat Earl - Wines were dull, had acidity but dropped off a cliff. Nothing special noted.
6. Domaine Long-Depaquit - Several 1er Cru and Grand Cru. Liked all but one. 1er Cru Les Vaillons was big, acrid (hard acidy) long legs, round. Potential to age nicely. Grand Cru La Moutonne 2009 was oaky very smooth fruity and we would give it a B+. Bayfield Importing is contact in US.

After lunch on way home we stopped at Ladoix-Serrigny to visit Gaston et Pierre Ravaut as we had been to a cave in Puligny-Montrachet on Sunday and had bought his 2009 Aloxe Corton Vieille Vignes for €25 and loved it. Pierre (son, aged 40-ish) gave us 1h30 of his time and we tasted 14 of his wines and loved them. They sell mostly to Europe (Belgians mostly) with a lot of customers purchasing directly from them. His top white Charlemagne Grand Cru (€50) was exceptional with almonds, fruity, very round/fat and big and delish (A++) . His Aloxe Corton (both VV €20 and 1er Cru €25) are excellent with food, accessible now, with earthy dark fruits yet elegant and strong. Corton Grand Cru reds €40 or €45, are both exceptional with raspberry and earthy and very smooth (A++). Loved wines and owner. He ships some to Oregon and SFO.

In Bissoh, (superb japanese restaurant in Beaune) we had 2006 Francois Raveneau 1er Cru Le Foret, €67, and it was wonderful with nice fruit, smooth, hints of honey and a nice rounded fatness. Did not see him at show but place was packed. His house was beside the event space, and I believe that I just saw him enter his house, when we were leaving, after lunch.

Following days were centered around Beaune, with minibuses departing from town to all of the villages, complete with crazy minivan driver lady with patent Doc Marten boots puffing like a chimney while narrowly avoiding crashes :slight_smile:

Nuits St.Georges
Domaine Jean-Pierre Bony - Daughter took over vineyard when father died. He never believed she would succeed him, so he never bought a 1er Cru plot when he had chance years ago. As a result she makes a 1er Cru but has to buy the grapes, and with land prices, she will never get the opportunity again to buy, she believes. She makes really good wine especially her Nuit St Georges 1er Cru which is €13.

Chateau de Premeaux - Organic wines ranging from C+ (N st G villages) to A (N st G 2002) (our invented rating scale was rather broad, so anything below a B is poor, and sometimes I never noted a score … oops). Mostly sold in Europe and nothing in US to speak of.

Sylvan Loichet - His Nuit St Georges had long legs and nice finish … B and B+ because nice fumey peppery ,

Domaine Remoriquet - Nuit St Georges 1er Cru from 2009 & 2010 – various parcels. Excellent wines very elegant and smooth. Velvety, with some power. I think he is looking for us distributor. He dealt with a french guy, Patrice le sec or something like that. Fellow never sold his wines, was trying to represent all of burgundy. Now domaine is talking to CT couple to import (guy is French and his wife, American)

Morey-St.Denis / Chambolle-Musigny

Domaine Pierre Amiot - Superb 1er Cru and Clos de la Roche Grand Cru. Some were big fruit forward earthy, one 1er Cru Aux Charmes was light and feminine and tasty, not voluptuous but elegant. Grand Cru was robust, acrid and tight yet very complex. Delish!

Dom Ghislaine Barthod - ChMusigny and ChM 1er Cru. Very good while tight, a bit tinny but very complex.

Dom Michel Magnien - Morey St Denis 1er Cru, Clos de la Roche, Chambolle Muzigny 1er Cru, all very traditional and still tightly wound with structure but not yet accessible. Clos de la Roche had rich black berries, not so smooth but nice.

Dom Chantal Remy - C de la R 2009 has great perfume, strong dark berries and longer legs (A) while 2010 was full fruit, tannic and short lived (A-). Morey St.Denis was long lived w/ wonderful flavor (A-). 2007 was tannic big and a bit harsh (B)

Marsannay was next.

Dom Louis Boillot - Gevry-Chambertin all of which were ok except for an earthy voluptuous big 1er Cru Cherbaudes 2009 (B+)

Dom Olivier Guyot. Ok but nothing outstanding. A Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Les Champeaux 2009 was quite good with nice earthiness (B-)

Philippe Leclerc - Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru Combe aux Moines 2009 was excellent (A-) complex and fumey, big and wonderful. Had a 2005 at lunch and it was great.

Pierre Naigeon - Lots of 1er Cru Gevrey Chambertin which were excellent. We gave them B, B+ , and A. Mushroom and forest tastes. Dark dusky. Elegant. His wife was nice but he’s a bit of a dick. His card has his photo on it, pouting like Zoolander.

Clos Vougeot was last. And best. And most crowded.
Dom Confuron Cotetidot - Vosne Romanee 2010 = pepper forest mushroom complex wow ; Vosne Romanee 1er Cru les Suchots 2010 = big nose fruit plums dark cherries ; Echezeaux Grand Cru 2010 was minerally peppery and thin ; Echezeaux Grand Cru 1999 was superb. Wow. Excellent fatness and fruit and long finish.

Dom R Dubois - Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2010 was gorgeous with plum and undergrowth and truffles

Dom Fougeray De Beauclair - Vosne Romanee 2009 and 2010 … Young, dark fruit, hard to distinguish between two as they were tight and tannic.

Dom Gros Frere et Soeur - Fabulous. Superb. All wines excellent. Cousin of Anne Gros who was beside them but too crowded to taste. VosRom 2010 ; Echezeaux Grand Cru 2010 ; Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru Musigny 2010 ; Grand Echezeauz Grand Cru 2010 ; Richebourg Grand Cru 2010
Floral, fruity, strawberry, chocolate, accessible despite being so young, long finish. All were fab and were our favorites or co-favorites. Clos Vougeot was huge. Richebourg was A+++

Maison Jadot - Vosne Romanee 1er Cru 2010 had beautiful nose with lovely finish. Big everything. 2005 Vosne Romanee 1er Cru had skunk, celery, mushroom, tobacco.

Maison Louis Latour - Romanee Saint-Vivant Grand Cru Les Quattre Journaux 2008 pepper, not as strong as '09
2009 was buttery and wonderful ; 2010 was good but a bit thin

Dom Gerard Mugneret - Vosne Romanee 2010 had liquorice, jam, sweet but nice, v good ; Vosne Rom 1er Cru Suchots floral in nose but a bit overpowering and harsh ; VosRom 1er Cru Brulees was more subtle and smooth, not overly sweet w/ nice long finish ; Echezeauz Grand Cru 2010 was A+ w/ herbs, raspberry, verbena and lovely long finish

Dom Des Perdrix - Echezeaux Grand Cru 2008 had lavender but also woodsy. Big huge aroma and flavor. 2010 was similar with mixture taken from lot of barrels (to give fair average of what it will be like) as not yet bottled. Similar but more tightly wound.

Dom Cecile Tremblay - Wow. Co-favorite. Vosne Rom 1er Cru Beaumonts has orange and chocolate in addition to great legs. We didn’t love all her wines but orange flavor took us by surprise in a sea of red fruit.

Wednesday was once more into the breach. But then I seem to have mislaid the tasting notes.

We rented an apartment in Beaune, and it was a first cousin of the owner who was there to give us the key - François Jullien de Pommerol of Domaine Lejeune, a very nice fellow indeed.
The apartment was very nice and central — just right for my wife and I. All in all, for someone who knew little of Burgundy, it was an amazing experience, and I have to thank our local wine store for getting us the invite … Jung from Piermont Fine Wines in Piermont NY.
It certainly has given me more focus on what I would like to try, and ideas for return visits. Beaune is a wonderful town, and easy to manage.