WB Burgundy Appellation Weekly Tasting - Week 1: Marsannay, Couchey and Fixin

Welcome to the Wine Berzerkers Burgundy Appellation Weekly Tasting Week 1! The purpose of this weekly tasting is to provide an active discussion of the current appellations filled with vineyard information, tasting notes, producer details, and a welcoming of all questions as we are all hopefully still learning about these intriguing places and the people behind the wines. As we move through the weeks, we can of course add to these threads creating even more of a searchable active profile of each appellation and surrounding area.

Reds and whites are open to discussion. In fact, we have room for some of the many surprises which may turn up as well. To this point, if you have an obscure bottling which comes from a nearby region, it would be of interest to have information on the wine presented. Vintage is open as well.

Please, also feel free to post on wines from every cru level (Village, 1er Cru (Premier Cru) and Grand Cru). In some instances, we will be focusing on wines from a much more broad region, such as Bourgogne level, Hautes Côtes de Nuits and Hautes Côtes de Beaune, and more! There should be something for everyone.

We will start in the North, in the Côte de Nuits just past Gevrey-Chambertin and Brochon, working our way South toward the Côte de Beaune. Please, join in with your tasting notes, experiences, suggestions and of course questions.

Thank you again for your participation and enthusiasm!


Santé [cheers.gif]

Week 1: Marsannay & Fixin at the top of the Côte d’Or. Included in this segment is Couchey.

*Updated with links for Fixin:
Bill Nanson’s Burgundy Report Profile (I would have picked a few things of interest. However, this deserves to be linked as there is so much contained in Bill’s work) - http://www.burgundy-report.com/spring-2007/fixin-a-village-profile/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Wikipedia - Fixin wine - Wikipedia" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

and Marsannay:
Marsannay wine - Wikipedia" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
next up…

Week 2: Gevrey-Chambertin (including Brochon) begins Sunday May 9th.

I’ve had four Fixins in the last few weeks-three examples from André Geoffroy who is cellarmaster at Bruno Clair in Marsannay where the wine from his small domaine-ie this one, La Croix Blanche. It’s a consistently fine and approachable village wine, very long lasting too. The 2004 from magnum was a delicious hit at a family party (where of course nobody was looking for the unpleasantly named ‘green meanies’, and therefore didn’t find them!) and the 98 and 95 are quite similar, fragrant and focused without the fierceness I sometimes associate with the appellation. A very good and well priced wine which is certainly not shamed by its Gevrey neighbours.
The fourth was a return to the 97 D. Laurent Fixin Les Hervelets, a wine that I drank a case of a few years ago. This was initially quite pinched and reduced and called out for a long decant that it didn’t get but it’s clearly fine stuff, though with some of the excessive warmth of the vintage, and I wish I had more.

The 2004 from magnum was a delicious hit at a family party (where of course nobody was looking for the unpleasantly named ‘green meanies’, and therefore didn’t find them!)

Now, I get it , Tom, if you don’t “look” for the 2004 plague, it isn’t there. [tease.gif] What have we all been missing. I guess it helps if the “family” wore nose plugs and was chewing minty gum when they were tasting their 2004s, too. [drinkers.gif] And, you’re right about this being “unpleasantly named”, so I say let’s change it to " wonderful tastes and aromas of rotting and decaying veggies and herbs, guaranteed to please anyone not looking for them." Does that sound better?

You are a lucky man that you love this vintage and its “character” so much…but, to imply that all you have to do is ignore it…is well, silly. If you are “lucky” and don’t detect such things…ok. But, to suggest that the “emperor” has a nice new set of clothes if you just look for them… [pillow-fight.gif]

Even when unaffected, this vintage isn’t good…at its best, IMO.

http://www.giftsforhimorher.com/i//34513.jpg" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Stuart, keep your hair on. I don’t deny that there is an issue with this vintage,it’s just that a lot of people have had a lot of pleasure from it, and that it is narrow minded of wine geeks to deny this. And yes, most people who aren’t looking for ‘it’ won’t find it-this is a very nice bottle. Nobody wants you to drink 04s if you don’t wan’t to, but don’t take the very existence of the vintage as a personal insult.

Darn, I have nothing from this region. I’ve been drinking wine for twenty years and have more Burgundy in my cellar than anything else, but I bet I’ve had less than ten bottles from this region. The only data point I have is a Bruno Clair Marsannay Grasses Tetes 1996 that I drank a couple of months back. I bought it at release and it was stored perfectly ever since. The wine was cut grass in a plastic bag and really dried out, and overall yucky. I feel that I should have opened the wine 5 to 10 years earlier. I read that 1996, sometimes-not for me-, can have acid and drying problems, still, maybe this will add to the discussion about how long to age some of the wines from these appellations, or at least how some years are.

Ah Stuart, it almost feels like home.

WB duly baptized with Stuart showing some love for 2004! [wow.gif] Now, we’re talking! It does feel like home…

This is a great thread idea, Ray. I just scanned CT and to my dismay, no Fixin or Marsannay right now. Will have to wait for the next episode.

LOL +1

Thanks for this thread, Ray, it’s a great idea and I look forward to following it.

Don’t have much Burg in my cellar, period, but my wine habits are definitely evolving in that direction. Over the years I’ve had some good stuff, even great stuff, but have been avoiding the region since it’s so complicated. This will be a very interesting way to learn more.

Not my home…everyone agrees with me there. grouphug

I make sure of that. [berserker.gif]

Bruno Clair Marsannay Grasses Têtes, 2005 (rouge)*

Opened late last night to get a running start for the weekly appellation series.

Simple pop and pour. There was a pretty, deep ruby color upon opening. Shows fairly open straight away with red fruit aromas easy to notice a good distance from the glass. There is a gentleness to this wine that is quite approachable and enjoyable yet in no way complex. A wine to enjoy rather than break down and intellectualize. Attempting to do just that, the fruit strikes the same pleasant tone throughout the life of the bottle, with a hint of wood tannin poking out disturbing the balance just a bit. Acid is slightly pronounced as is a slight streak of alcohol from tip to tail, though its never too overwhelming. The weight here is something that reminds me that I should eat more duck. The thrill ends quick here with a clipped finish, and a bottle all too easily consumed. Overall an appealing bottle and worth the $27.

*to make things easier on notes, I will note rouge or blanc

Stuart, you’ll be happy to hear that I just opened a bottle of Fourrier Clos Solon 04 that is undrinkably tainted. I’ve had fifteen or so previously that were completely clean, very hard to explain.

Oh, Marsannay. Welcome to my neighborhood in Burgundy.
Remember to lock your doors and not to leave anything visible in your cars when you park.
I’ve got two 2004 Rotys I need to try. One is Joseph Roty and one is a wine I thought was Joseph Roty.
I’ve also got a 2004 Roty Marsannay rose that hopefully is still good.

I’d like to make a suggestion… I’d encourage people to post notes in a separate thread to make it easier to search etc. (or maybe post duplicates?) Please set me straight if I’m wrong…

Hello Ed,
tasting notes and info on the specific region of the week (Marsannay, Fixin and Couchey) along with questions and suggestion are going in this thread. If someone wishes to duplicate, that should be fine too.

Bruno Clair is in Montreal and I’m attending a dinner with him tomorrow, where we will taste his 2007s:

Marsannay “Les Longeroies”
Morey-St-Denis “En la rue de Vergy”,
Vosne-Romanée “Les Champs-Perdrix”,
Savigny-les-Beaune 1er cru “La Dominode”,
Gevrey-Chambertin 1er cru “Cazetiers”,
Gevrey-Chambertin 1er cru “Clos St-Jacques”
Chambertin Clos de Bèze Grand cru
Bonnes Mares Grand Crus

This should be an interesting addition to this thread, if I’m not too trashed to remember and report what I will learn.

I’ve been unimpressed with Bruno Clair wines over the years and is one of only two producers on my “don’t buy, don’t taste” list (along with Gouges).

On another note, +1 Stuart, I thought I was the only one who took the existence of 2004 red Burgundy as a prank of the Devil, whose greatest crime is to convince people he doesn’t exist… [cheers.gif]

Got a 2002 Meo Fixin on tap for tonight…

Nick, I think you should try again with Clair, I’ve always liked them but there has been a massive and continuous improvement over the last ten years or so. Though the prices have not failed to keep pace.


I’ve only had 02 and later from B Clair but have been a fan of what I’ve had and have started seeking some of them out as a result.