Tag Archives: Lucien le Moine

Burgundy Dinner with Friends

What better way to kickoff 2012 than with a Burgundy Wine Dinner with good friends. Make it pot luck, add a bottle of 2004 Pierre Peters and 1969 Moet & Chandon Champagne to start, and you have the makings of what should be a fun evening!

2010 was filled with a lot of great wine, and quite a few exceptional Burgundy. Some of the best ones that come to mind: 1969 Leroy Echezeaux, 1985 Joseph Voillot Volnay Champans, 1990 DRC Grands Echezeaux, 1990 Jean Gros Richebourg, 1991 Vogue Musigny Vieilles Vignes, 1998 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet, 2001 Coche Dury Meursault 1er Cru Les Perrieres and a 2004 Domaine Blain Gagnard Le Montrachet. With a little luck, 2012 will rival so many nice wines opened in 2011.

The Inaugural 2012 wine dinner turned out to be a lot of fun. With ten of us in attendance, unfortunately pours were relatively small and there was a limited opportunity to revisit the wines over time. That said, brief impressions follow, and sorted in order of personal preference by flight.

Champagne Starter – Both Champagnes were lovely. The Pierre Peters was sweet, a touch of saline, with a refreshing, refined smooth palate, a gorgeous wine. In contrast the Moet & Chandon was lively, fuller in style, and pleasant drinking. It was a bit oxidized, but well within expectations for a 40+ year old Champagne. This was the oldest Champagne I have ever tasted, and was pleasantly surprised.

2004 Pierre Peters Les Chetillons
1969 Moet & Chandon Brut Imperial

White Burgundy – The Corton Charlemagne flight was very good. The Boillot was the biggest most powerful wine of the group, with excellent balance, citrus, toast, and lightly reduced, a highly age worthy wine. Both the Bouchard and Bonneau Martray had much in common, mature, creamy wines, both enjoyable. Sadly, the Louis Latour sulfur was intense, so much so, it grossly took away from wine. Both the Colin Deleger Montrachet and Ramonet Batard Montrachet were oxidized and sadly not very enjoyable.

2005 H. Boillot Corton Charlemagne
2002 Bouchard Corton Charlemagne
2001 Bonneau du Martray Corton Charlemagne
2001 Louis Latour Corton Charlemagne
2001 Colin Deleger Montrachet
1995 Ramonet Batard Montrachet

Red Burgundy – Easily the wine of the flight, and wine of the night, the Ponnelle Musigy was beautiful. Mint, leather, youthful clean fruit, with tannin well in proportion to the wines other components. The Echezeaux flight was the best overall flight of the night. Mongeard Mugneret was peppermint, spice, blue fruits, Maniere Noirot youthful, tight, dark fruits, and both Jayer Gilles, vanilla, stemy and approachable. Thought the Drouhin Musigny should be aged longer, has not yet fully come together, it showed an interesting cognac quality on the palate.

1961 Ponnelle Musigny
1989 Maniere Noirot Echezeaux
1998 Mongeard Mugneret Echezeaux Vieille Vigne
1996 Drouhin Laroze Musigny
1998 Jayer Gilles Echezeaux
2001 Jayer Gilles Echezeaux

Mystery Wine -Immediately thought this was a California Pinot Noir. Bright clean fruit, surprising lack of tannin, was mature, round, full bodied, but in no way on the decline. It lacked a certain earth, mineral, spice, and tannic quality you might expect from a blind Burgundy knowingly about a decade old. It all became crystal clear once Bonnes Mares was correctly guessed, it was well in line with numerous other bottles tasted from the vineyard and producer. A very nice wine.

2001 Lucien le Moine Bonnes Mares

Barolo Flight – This was a disappointing flight, not so much from the perspective of the wines absolute quality, more so from personal preference. No notes were taken at the time, just did not find anything particularly appealing. The older wines were all decanted, and could not help but be struck by the appearance of the 1950. It looks like milky, muddy water. Have never seen a more unappealing wine, and the taste was equally disappointing. Projecting forward, a strong candidate for worst wine of the year!

1997 Virginia Ferrero Barolo
1982 Borgogno Barolo
1964 Borgogno Barolo
1971 Borgogno Barolo
1950 Franco Fiorina Barolo

Cheese Plate Wine – Second favorite wine of the night, this was a generous surprise bottle pulled from our hosts cellar. Had it been served blind, would have guessed it as something a few years old, not a wine over 40 years old! It was gorgeous, bone dry, tight, grapefruit, saline with firm acidity. An exceptional wine!

1971 Clos de la Coulee de Serrant Savennieres

Dessert Wines – Found both dessert wines just ok. Have very much enjoyed 1995 stickies, and fondly remember a gorgeous 1995 d’Yquem. The two Ch Tirecul La Graviere Monbazillac were pleasant, sweet, full bodied, mouth coating, but somewhat one dimensional. Found them good, not great.

1995 Ch Tirecul La Graviere Monbazillac Cuvee Madame
1995 Ch Tirecul La Graviere Monbazillac

Cheers to a fun dinner with good friends!

Nick Wittman
Santa Rosa Fine Wine
http://www.santarosafinewine.com/

Small Burgundy Tasting

This past Friday, attended a small Burgundy Tasting in Sonoma. It does not happen often, but the White Burgundy out shined the red! The 2007 Blain Gagnard Batard Montrachets were both outstanding, and hopefully representative of what should prove to be an excellent vintage for White Burgundy.

As with other local Burgundy tastings in Sonoma, it is basically no format, bring what you would like to share, open and enjoy. Wines are rarely if ever decanted, and slowly enjoyed over a long evening. Sometimes curiosity wines are thrown into the mix. On this occasion, they were interesting, but none particularly inspiring. As with previous tastings, wines are sorted in order of personal preference by flight.

White Wine of the Night:
2007 Blain Gagnard Batard Montrachet

Red Wine of the Night:
2001 Denis Mugneret Clos de Vougeot

White Flight

2007 Blain Gagnard Batard Montrachet – Initially, noted acidity and hard to discern fruit in a very young wine. In time, the nose became more floral and yeasty and the body, creme brulee and full bodied with awesome balance and length. A precise wine that should show extremely well with a few years of bottle aging.

2007 Blain Gagnard Croits Batard Montrachet – The bottle was pulled from the refrigerator of our always generous host, after being opened two days. Showed more citrus, asian spice, and firm acidity in a well balanced, excellent drinking wine than the other Batard Montrachet.

2004 M. Chapoutier Chante Alouette – The Chapoutier started out showing promise with sweet, honey, lemon oil notes. Overall was a fat wine with a predominate butterscotch component and smooth texture. Over time, thought it quickly lost what originally made it interesting. Did not care for this wine.

Red Flight

2001 Denis Mugneret Clos de Vougeot – The best wine of the flight, thought the Clos Vougeot was interesting, blue fruits and game meats, in time, picked up a touch of forest floor and spice. It was a clean and pure drinking wine, very enjoyable. Held a glass over to the next day, and it showed even better!

1999 Lucien le Moine Clos St Denis – Interesting nose that was reminiscent of Brandy and fresh cut grass. The wine was rich, balanced and enjoyable. Thought it was just slightly under the 2001 Denis Mugneret Clos de Vougeot as wine of the fight. Went back and forth between this wine and the Clos Vougeot as to personal preference.

1995 Georges Lignier Clos St Denis – Light, lean, some mineral and spice though thought the acidity was a little disjointed in relation to the rest of the wine. Had moments of being brighter and younger than the other wines, but out of balance overall. Not a great showing for the wine.

Curiosity Wines

1995 Beaucastel – Initially a light wine, noted wheat, and became more chewy and stewed rhubarb, barnyard, and other exotic components in time. Not sure anyone was particularly thrilled with the wine, an end of evening curiosity.

1963 Beaulieu Vineyard Beaumont Pinot Noir – A blind mystery wine, the group guessed it as 70’s / 80’s California, and one Burgundy. The wine was very light, and bricking in color. Initially mushroom, smokey, meaty, dry carmel, sherry and nice acidity. It very rapidly declined. Of note was one of the shortest corks I have seen in awhile, about an inch at best. A curiosity more than anything.

2001 Pride Cabernet – Normally, a big fan of Pride, this wine was one of the least favoriate showings I have had from the producer. Had boat loads of Vanilla that reminded me of a Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet. Not an exciting wine at all, and like the other two wines, opened at the end of the evening more as a curiosity.

Cheers to another interesting, however small tasting!

Nick Wittman
Santa Rosa Fine Wine
http://www.santarosafinewine.com/