Very Special Chianti for Special Occasions
Staff Pick: A Different Color of Red
Gatinois and the Glory of Äy.
Vissoux: Just Under the Radar Enough
Saint Cosme’s Best Value
Great, Back Vintage Grand Cru Vosne
Vinopolis will be closed Thanksgiving Day, November 22nd
We will return to our normally scheduled hours (10AM-6PM)
on Friday, November 23rd.
For Special Occasions
That’s why we’re very proud of this collection of library wines from the legendary Castell’in Villa, in the heart of Chianti Classico. They make resolutely old-school Chianti that begs to be aged and this set of wines, straight from the winery cellars, offers a glimpse into the haunting beauty that is possible. These are stunning wines with excellent provenance and would be a treat for any wine lover this holiday season.
If you’re unfamiliar with the estate, some quick background: When Principessa Coralia Pignatelli della Leonessa and her husband bought their 13th century farmhouse and estate in Tuscany in the late 60’s their intention was not to become one of the leading producers of traditionally-made Chianti Classico. Rather, the goal was simple—find a place to settle down and raise a family, and the vineyards were part of the mixed agriculture that was traditional in Tuscany at the time.
Over time, though, more and more of the property became planted to vineyards (the estate currently has about 40 producing hectares out of ~300 on the property) until in 1985, tragedy struck. A large freeze decimated the olive trees on the property (oil production is an important source of income) and her husband died later in the year. She seriously considered selling the estate and moving elsewhere but instead doubled down, committing to make the best wines in the region.
Stylistically, these are some of the most old-school and age-worthy wines coming out of Chianti today—wines that make you sit up and realize why the name at one point was synonymous with Italian wine. The Chianti and Riserva are both 100% Sangiovese, aged in large casks for three years before bottling and have that slightly faded glory quality that makes the wines special. Bright fruit, present tannin and a floral, slightly dried cherry quality are all here, with more earth and spice emerging with age.
The Principessa prides herself on how long the wines age for and the winery keeps (and releases) significant library wines. They’re significant both in age and also in importance—it’s very hard to find older Chianti in the secondary market (most collectors who buy Castell’in Villa are loathe to sell it). These are reference point wines, capable of lasting decades, and being utterly profound experiences. They’d make a perfect gift or a focal bottle for a festive meal.
In Stock Now:
Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 1993 750ML ($249.95) $219 special
Antonio Galloni 94 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 1993 Chianti Classico Riserva is another stunning wine. It boasts gorgeous depth and purity, not to mention fabulous overall balance. Sweet dark cherries, licorice, mint and spices are woven together in this fleshy, supple Riserva. The firm tannins are there, but the 1993 has more than enough fruit to stand up to the wine’s structural components. Today the 1993 comes across as slightly smaller scaled version of the 1990. This is a fabulous wine with at least another decade of fine drinking ahead of it.”
Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 1994 750ML ($249.95) $219 special
Antonio Galloni 94 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 1994 Chianti Classico Riserva is more immediate and juicy than the 1993. There is plenty of underlying structure, but it is buried by the wine’s generous fruit. Sweet dark cherries, plums, tobacco and incense meld together on the exotic, spiced finish. This is a relatively fleshy wine for Castell’in Villa. I have a slight preference for the 1993, but the truth is that all five wines from the 1990s are fabulous. I would be thrilled to own any of them.”
Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 1995 750ML ($279.95) $249 special
Antonio Galloni 95 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 1995 Chianti Classico Riserva is another marvelously complete wine. Waves of fruit saturate the palate in this intense, full-bodied Riserva. The 1995 is another wine endowed with massive fruit and equally imposing structure. It is the first wine in this tasting that is still not ready to offer maximum pleasure. Today it comes across as a young version of the 1990. This is another tremendous showing.”
Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2001 750ML ($149.95) $119 special
Antonio Galloni 94 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 2001 Chianti Classico Riserva is a big, layered wine bursting with energy. It possesses striking aromatic nuance and delineation from the very first taste. Today the fruit is quite vibrant and the tannins, while present, are not completely unapproachable.”
Antonio Galloni 93+ points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 2005 Chianti Classico Riserva is an impressive wine for the vintage. It boasts a serious core of fruit backed up by considerable structure. The sheer purity and delineation is fabulous. I won’t at all be surprised if the 2005 blossoms into an even better wine than this note suggests. There is no shortage of potential. Ideally the 2005 should be cellared for at least a few years.”
Ian D’Agata–Vinous 92+ points “Good bright red. Nose began closed and brooding, but showed vibrant notes of redcurrant, mint and dried flowers with aeration, complicated by a strong mineral quality. Sweet and nicely lush in the mouth, with suave flavors of redcurrant, herbs and tobacco joined on the back end by a very strong element of gunflint. The long finish features a firm acid spine and youthfully chewy but noble tannins.” ID
Castell’in Villa Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2009 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Antonio Galloni 92 points “Rich, enveloping and beautifully layered, the 2009 Chianti Classico Riserva is a rare Riserva that will drink nicely with minimal cellaring. Sweet tobacco, licorice, leather, cedar and underbrush meld together as this radiant, supple Riserva opens up in the glass. More classic elements of structure emerge on the finish.” AG
Castell’in Villa ‘Poggio delle Rose’, Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG 1996 750ML ($159.95) $128 special
Antonio Galloni 94 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 1996 Chianti Classico Riserva Poggio delle Rose emerges from the glass with generous fruit, which is given additional volume and richness from the French oak. The 1996 is a big, big wine, especially within the context of the vintage. Because 1996 is the debut vintage, the percentage of new barrels is higher than in subsequent years, and the wine remains marked by the oak. Smoke, licorice and tar wrap around a muscular finish supported by firm, insistent tannins.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 2006 Chianti Classico Riserva Poggio delle Rose brings together all of the best elements of this site and house style. Firm tannins frame a core of deeply expressive, opulent fruit in this full-throttle, huge Chianti Classico. Threads of sweet perfumed fruit run through the 2006 as it shows off its class and personality. Mint, flowers and sweet red berries punctuate the explosive finish. This is a dazzling showing from Castell’in Villa.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “[Reviewed Jun 2012] The 2004 Santacroce is silky, layered and impeccably balanced. Sweet red roses, red berries and spices are all woven together beautifully in this refined, expressive wine. This is a lovely showing. The 2004 captures the essence of the 2004 vintage in a relatively soft, supple style built for near and mid-term enjoyment.”
Antonio Galloni 93+ points “Castell’in Villa’s 2009 Chianti Classico Riserva Poggio delle Rose captures the generosity of the vintage while retaining a gorgeous sense of freshness and energy. Red stone fruit, tobacco, menthol, sage and leather nuances are bright and nicely focused, but with the additional breadth provided by the warm vintage. A long, silky finish rounds things out in style.” AG
The next best price is $116.66
Pelaverga is a grape that yields wines somewhere darker than rosé, but not by a whole lot. It’s a grape of charm and elegance—woodwinds more than electric guitar. I will admit that this is not the dominant ideology when it comes to red wine these days (which is very much ripeness and power über alles), but Peleverga (and a handful of wines like it) is a grape that I find myself using with increasing frequency at the dinner table.
Perhaps that’s just how I eat—there’s not a lot of meals at home that are just steak/potatoes/etc. and so the number of nights that Cabernet seems called for is limited. By contrast, Pelaverga’s lilting, rose and white pepper accented aromatics and red-fruited flavors provide a welcome pairing to everything from fish to pastas and all manner of roasted veggies, especially if they have a touch of spice to them. It’s an obscure grape (grown in Piemonte) but we could apply this sort of asesthetic to a number of other delicious wines in the store. To start with, though, try one of these two and see if a different color of red might be useful to you.
Castello di Verduno Basadone Pelaverga, Piedmont 2016 750ML ($26.95) $21.90 special
Winery Note “Soft, though bright ruby red. Intense fragrant nose, showing clear spicy overtones of black pepper and nutmeg, as well as fruity sensations reminiscent of cherries in spirit and strawberries. Nicely-balanced, lingering dry flavour.”
The Glory of Äy
Of the producers in Äy, Gatinois might be the most undervalued. The family farms some of the best land in the town and works with a very high proportion of a massale selection of Pinot Noir called “Petite Pinot d’Äy” that has extremely small berries. These small berries ensure an exceptionally flavorful base wine that translate into the finished product—Gatinois’ wines are rich, textured and powerful. We’re excited to carry them and they arrive at the end of the month, in plenty of time for celebratory fall drinking.
This gives Bollinger a run for the money at a lot less $$.
Gatinois Grand Cru Tradition Brut NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Importer note “Composed mainly of the 2014 vintage, with a small bit of reserve wine. Fermentation (100% malo) in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts. Estate-owned Pinot Noir (majority is Petit Pinot d’Ay) and Chardonnay grown in the Grand Cru village of Äy. Most of their Pinot holdings are comprised of massale selection Petite Pinot d’Ay: a small-yielding, tiny berried clone that is unique to this village. [The soil] has a good percentage of limestone found in subsoils. Technically located in Vallée de la Marne, but its terroir and exposition are more like Montagne de Reims.”
Winery note “Attractive yellow hue with honeyed reflections. The complex nose offers white flowers, yellow fruits and candied citrus. 3 years of ageing in our cellars allows the champagne to develop a rich, smooth texture on the palate, with notes of stewed fruit, brioche and honey complemented by the generosity of Pinot Noir.”
Gatinois Grand Cru Rose d’Ay Brut NV 750ML ($69.95) $49 special
Importer note “Estate-owned Pinot Noir (majority is Petit Pinot d’Ay) and Chardonnay grown in the Grand Cru village of Äy. Most of their Pinot holdings are comprised of massale selection Petite Pinot d’Ay: a small-yielding, tiny berried clone that is unique to this village. Assemblage-style rosé made mostly from the 2013 vintage, with a small bit of reserve wine. The still wine (Pinot Noir) was sourced from 60 year old vines. Fermented (100% malo) in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts. [The soil] has a good percentage of limestone found in subsoils. Technically located in Vallée de la Marne, but its terroir and exposition are more like Montagne de Reims.”
Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($39.95) $33 special
Case-12 Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut, Champagne NV 750ML($419.95) $359 special (that’s only $29.92/bottle!)
Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut, Champagne NV 3L ($319.95) $269 special
Importer note “Initially showing a very fresh bouquet of high toned fruits with hints of hazelnuts and yeasty aromas, the Grande Réserve cuvée displays highly structured red fruit notes on the palate for which the area is so famous. Long lees aging, low dosage and Grand Cru Pinot Noir fruit combine for an opulent yet balanced Champagne.”
Andre Clouet Silver Grand Cru Blanc de Noirs Brut Nature, Champagne NV 750ML ($39.95) $33 special
Case-12 Andre Clouet Silver Grand Cru Blanc de Noirs Brut Nature, Champagne NV 750ML ($419.95) $359 special (that’s only $29.92/bottle!)
Andre Clouet Silver Grand Cru Blanc de Noirs Brut Nature, Champagne NV 3L ($319.95) $289 special
Grapelive 93 points “This is some sensationally great bubbly! Jean-François Clouet, who was born and raised in Bouzy, still lives in the 18th century village house built by his ancestors. He takes his lineage seriously and respects his family’s traditions and that of the region, [Bouzy, where he] is a renowned grower producer. Clouet makes a full range of intense and stylish Champagnes, all of which come [from] family plots mostly comprised of 100% Pinot Noir from Clouet’s lieux-dits in the Bouzy zone. The André Clouet “Silver” Grand Cru Brut Nature is a non-vintage, zero dosage Champagne of exceptional class and delicacy. It’s a severe and high-toned 100% Pinot bubbly from mid-slopes around the village of Bouzy set on the chalky limestone and clay. It went through full malo and was aged on its lees in neutral French oak barrel. [This adds] to the surprise of its crisp detail, considering its malo/wood winemaking fashion, though like a great Burgundy it changes and gains with time in the glass adding richness to the tight form it initially shows. If ever there was a Champagne that fits all my wants and desires, then this Clouet, fits the bill. I adore Extra Bruts and Non Dosage styles absolutely best of all and this Andre Clouet Silver kills it for the price! Lemony briskness leads the way with hints of hazelnut, brioche and wet river stones adding a touch of white cherry, unripe apple and cool green melon, all lifted by the pure tight beading of its electric mousse. The Pinot Noir gives a bite of extract which makes this a fantastic food Champagne. It is perfect for oysters, sushi and mussels in spicy broth. It’s not for everyone, but damn it’s good. It’s without question a thinker’s sparkler not a crowd pleaser, which just makes it that much more special.”
Mousse Fils L’Or d’Eugene Blanc de Noirs Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Wine Spectator 91 points “[Reviewed 2017] Firm acidity structures this vibrant Champagne, softened by the creamy mousse, which carries a subtle mesh of ripe blackberry, toast, preserved lemon and fleur de sel notes. Fresh and floral, lingering finish. Drink now through 2020. 75 cases imported.”
The Le Vissoux wines are a great value; the quality is uncompromised and the wine is joyful and vibrant. From their simplest bottlings through their top crus, the wine expresses Beaujolais terroir in spades. The fruit is deep and pure, but it doesn’t go beyond perfectly ripe. The top wines age beautifully over a 5-15 year period but always seem to drink well on release. We’ve never managed to avoid drinking the less expensive bottles to find out how they age. The wines are quite simply a near perfect reflection of what Beaujolais should be. Chermette killed it in 2017 and these wines are as good as have ever been produced by the estate.
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux ‘Origine’ Vieilles Vignes, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($19.95) $16 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 91 points “A superb wine, the 2017 Beaujolais-Villages Origine unfurls in the glass with a classy bouquet of smoky cassis, plums and subtle notions of loamy soil. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, juicy and ample, with supple tannins, succulent acids and impressive concentration, concluding with a mouthwatering, flavorful finish”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Coeur de Vendanges, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($24.95) $19 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “A wine that would embarrass many more expensive bottlings from Moulin-à-Vent or Fleurie, Chermette’s 2017 Beaujolais-Villages Coeur de Vendanges bursts with aromas of crushed cassis, raspberries, potpourri and rich soil tones. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, layered and concentrated, with melting tannins, a generous core of sappy fruit and a long, beautifully delineated finish. Intensely flavorful but refreshing, accessible but substantive, this is a fabulous wine that exemplifies the appeal of Beaujolais. Given its unabashed deliciousness and decidedly modest tariff, this wine must be one of French wine’s greatest values.”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90+ points “Notes of crushed cassis, ripe plums and dried flowers introduce the 2017 Brouilly Pierreux, a crunchy, medium to full-bodied wine with good depth at the core, juicy balancing acids and a somewhat rustic chassis of structuring tannin. I’d be inclined to forget it in the cellar for a year or two and drink it over the following five.”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie les Garants, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($31.95) $27 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2017 Fleurie Garants is a warmer, southwest-facing site, and its bouquet is correspondingly richer and more sun-kissed than that of Chermette’s Poncié, exhibiting notes of ripe, plummy fruit, rich spices and subtle hints of loamy soil. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, ample and expansive, with a generous core of fruit, framed by fine tannins.”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie Poncie, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($31.95) $27 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2017 Fleurie Poncié hails from a southeast-facing, higher-altitude site that’s typically quite cool, and that’s reflected in its bright, perfumed bouquet of raspberries, rose petals and Griotte cherries, with suggestions of darker fruits emerging with air. On the palate, the wine is medium to full-bodied, pure and nicely concentrated, with fine tannins, a bright line of acidity and good length on the finish.”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Trois Roches, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($34.95) $29 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2017 Moulin-à-Vent Les Trois Roches is superb—and likely the king of the cellar chez Chermette this year—wafting from the glass with a beautiful bouquet of raspberries, potpourri, orange rind and rose petal. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, layered and supple, with the most depth and amplitude of any wine in the portfolio and the most held in reserve, too. This is a fantastic expression of Moulin-à-Vent from one of Beaujolais’s greatest winemakers, and it comes warmly recommended.”
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Saint Amour, Beaujolais 2017 750ML ($27.95) $24 pre-arrival special
Nick Stock-Jamessuckling.com 93 points “Rich aromas of poached strawberries and pastries, as well as pomegranate and blood oranges. Really fresh. The palate has a very plush and lively strawberry core. Raspberries, too. Juicy, sapid appeal. Drink now or hold.”
Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Les Deux Albion, Rhone2016 750ML ($24.95) $19 pre-arrival special
Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Les Deux Albion, Rhone2016 1.5L ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Grapelive 93 points “Louis Barruol uniquely with the Chateau version of Cotes du Rhone, Les Deux Albions, uses multiple vineyard sites to gain complexity, but still co-ferments all the grapes (together) which includes mainly Syrah, but with a good dose of Grenache, Carignan, Mourvèdre and Clairette. This 2016 is gripping stuff, deep and earthy highlighting its 100% whole cluster fermentation and Syrah-based power, especially in such a vintage. This is very serious stuff. This is not your grandpa’s Cotes du Rhone. In fact it would be hard not to think of this as a full blown Chateauneuf or Crozes-Hermitage. This wine comes from parcels of vines that are set on hardened clay hillsides of ancient alluvium, along with limestone marl and rocky pebbles with southern exposures mostly, but with enough elevation and the Mistral that gives acidity, so this inky dark wine has fantastic structure and solid tannins. The Les Deux Albions is raised in a combination of unique wooden vats with a truncated cone shape and concrete tanks. This serves this wine well allowing the terroir and old school character to excel. It’s a brilliant Rhone and a killer value. Dark meaty and leathery notes lead the way along with a bouquet of melted salty black licorice, crushed violets that leads to a bold palate of boysenberry, black plums, peppercorns, dried aromatic herbs, lavender oil, cedar and lingering blueberry all of which unfold in lively and vigorous layers. It’s a full bodied red that just gets better and better with each and every sip.”
Wine Spectator 91 points “A solid, slightly gutsy version that sports dark cherry, plum and cassis flavors inlaid liberally with violet, pepper and bramble notes. Reveals a flash of licorice root on the finish. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Cinsault. Drink now through 2020. 4,000 cases made.”
From what we’ve seen across the country, the new releases of both Richebourg and RSV are going to push $700-800 (or more), which makes this offering of perfectly cellared wines a steal (in relative terms). These are wines that have a decade-plus head start in their journey to maturity and the cost for that time is practically nothing—a real opportunity.
We’ve secured additional stock on many of these wines—now totaling 42 bottlings, arriving at the end of the month, and are showing you a few highlights here. You can click here to view the entire set online and buy them now—like with most top Burgundies, quantities on each individual wine are extremely limited.
Arriving Late This Month:
Alain Hudelot-Noellat Richebourg Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2002 750ML ($999.95) $899 pre-arrival special, 1 bottle available
Burghound 93 points “[Tasted Sept 2018] Some lightening at the rim. There is evident secondary character to the spicy and beautifully layered nose that consists mostly of fresh red berries, Asian-style tea and discreet leather hints. I like the intensity of the delicious middle weight flavors that possess good if not better mid-palate concentraiton along with good minerality on the sneaky long finish. For my taste this has arrived at its peak though it should continue to drink well for at least another decade, perhaps even 15.”
Burghound 94 points “Initially this was somewhat like the 2006 RSV (see herein) as the nose was reduced though unlike the RSV the reduction rapidly blew off to reveal an intensely spicy and layered dark berry fruit nose that remains entirely primary and youthful. There is excellent intensity to the tautly muscular, cool and mineral-inflected big-boned flavors that are supported by a firm tannic spine on the powerfully long and driving finish. This highly promising effort is still very much on the way up and should age beautifully for years.”
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points “Deep red-ruby. Stubbornly closed nose hints at some high-toned dark berries and spices along with sweet oak. Fatter and riper than the RSV, showing more early power but less finesse. This is distinctly chewy and deep, with terrific density but less lift to its brooding flavors of black cherry, dark berries and minerals. As broad and powerful as this is, it comes across as less sweet today than the RSV.”
Stephen Tanzer 94+ points “Medium red. Pungent perfume of blood orange, licorice and herbs, lifted by a floral topnote. Tactile but backward, with terrific lift and perfume to the raspberry and crushed fruit flavors. The terrific rising finish displays great energy and a wonderfully light touch. Really stains the palate. With aeration, a deeper smoky, earthy tang and more adamant minerality emerged. A beauty, but lay it down for at least seven or eight years.”
The next best price is $842
Burghound 95 points “A very densely fruited nose is composed mostly from the black side of the fruit spectrum along with notes of menthol, spice and Asian tea nuances. There is excellent concentration to the intense and attractively well-detailed middle weight flavors that possess a suave and highly seductive mouth feel before terminating in a mouth coating, complex and hugely long finish. This is an unusually powerful RSV that is less elegant than usual yet one that is still very much on the way up, indeed I would suggest allowing it at least another 5 to 7 years of cellar time as it’s very much still a baby.”
Stephen Tanzer 94+ points “Good deep red. Knockout perfume of strawberry, violet and cocoa powder, complemented by sweet oak. Sappy, spicy and deep, with a compelling sweetness leavened by firm minerality. Wonderfully silky in texture and graceful. Highly complex flavors of raspberry, leather, smoke and mineral stain the back end with subtle perfume. This struck me as like a more pliant version of the Beaumonts but with the powerful mineral and tannic spine for a 20-year-evolution in bottle.”
Burghound 92-95 points “This is also surprisingly reserved and if not inexpressive, then reluctant though vigorous swirling coaxes a stunningly broad array of spice nuances as well as both blue and black fruit aromas that slide gracefully into rich, full, sweet and subtly mineral-infused flavors that are impressively powerful for the vintage and deliver simply huge length on the explosive and palate staining finish. This is not only classy but exceptionally stylish as well though note that it will need 12 to 15 years to reach its majority – it should be well worth the wait.”
Stephen Tanzer 92-95 points “Bright red-ruby. Ripe black raspberry, cocoa powder, spices and smoke on the nose. Lush and silky on entry, then wonderfully tangy and brisk in the middle, with vibrant acidity and firm minerality giving superb focus to the black cherry and violet flavors. Shows as much finesse today as the 2005 did a year ago. Finishes tightly wound, pure and very long, with terrific mineral spine.”
Alain Hudelot-Noellat Romanee-Saint-Vivant Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2008 750ML ($799.95) $699 pre-arrival special, 1 bottle available
Stephen Tanzer 93+ points “Medium red. Musky, soil-driven aromas of mocha, licorice, spices, soy sauce and flowers. Sweet, plush, rich and very ripe, but with plenty of energy to the cocoa powder, loam and spice flavors. The impressive, slowly building finish shows a distinctly saline character and a positive dryness. A fascinating wine of terroir, in need of patience.”
Burghound 92-95 points “The ’08 RSV displays a pure, highly spiced and expressive nose where the fruit runs more to the red side of the spectrum with hints of plum and violets that marry into refined, focused and precise medium full-bodied flavors that are utterly seductive as there is a beguiling succulence to the textured and gorgeously long finish that tightens up quickly as the ripe tannins make their presence felt. This will need time and it is a very impressive effort.”
Burghound 95 points “This also sports discreet wood influence on the intensely floral and kaleidoscopically spicy nose of blue berry and black cherry aromas that introduce rich, intense and naturally sweet middle weight flavors that are lacy, pure and almost delicate before culminating in a suave, explosive and magnificently long finish. This is just terrific and the balance is impeccable. Note however that like the 2010 version, the ultra-fine tannins are also quite dense and this will also require 15 years or so of cellar time before it will be ready for prime time.”
Stephen Tanzer 89-92 points “(20% of the juice is from vines in their fourth leaf) Deep, bright red. Sappy, pure aromas of dark berries and minerals. Fat and sweet but less expressive and less perfumed than the ineffable Suchots. This boasts lovely sweet red berry flavors but seems a bit stunted today on the back end, with the chewy tannins standing out.”
Burghound 89-91 points “The slightly higher-toned nose is even fresher and brighter with a similar nose of spicy black fruit trimmed in obvious minerality that introduces complex, delicious and somewhat more forward middle weight flavors that possess good detail and the same firm mineral streak suggested by the nose. This is classy juice with excellent length and while I like the greater finesse here versus the Suchots, the latter wine has better mid-palate fat and concentration.”
Antonio Galloni 92-94 points “The 2010 Vosne-Romanée Les Beaux Monts blossoms on the palate with tons of class and finesse. I especially like the restrained style, but at the same time there is no shortage of personality and depth in this totally sexy, voluptuous Beaux Monts. Persistent saline notes lend brightness to the well-articulated finish.”
Burghound 91-93 points “This had just been racked and not surprisingly was quite closed though aggressive swirling coaxed grudging aromas of spice, wet stone and cassis. The pure and intensely mineral-inflected flavors are shaped by exceptionally fine-grained tannins as well as excellent length on the pure, balanced and energetic finish. This is a wine of finesse and while it’s notably finer than the Suchots, it’s not as complex or at least not yet.”
Stephen Tanzer 92-95 points “Deep red. Blueberry, blackberry, flowers, spices and minerals on the slightly exotic nose, lifted by spicy oak. Round, lush and rich, with the weight and palate presence of a grand cru. Offers an uncanny combination of breadth and inner-mouth perfume, with the sweet oak serving to frame the fruit. Today this is the fleshiest and oakiest of the three premier crus from Vosne-Romanee, but the finish is wonderfully tangy and sappy, not to mention extremely long. A great showing-and very much in the typical style of this domain’s best wines from past vintages.”
Burghound 91-93 points “In a somewhat curious departure from all of the prior wines, the wood is borderline dominant and fights with the otherwise spicy and notably ripe black fruit nose that merges into rich, delicious and powerful flavors that possess plenty of punch and muscle on the exceptionally long finish. I asked for a second sample and it was much more balanced and more in keeping with the Hudelot style. I suspect with the impressive amount of dry extract present that once the final blend is made the oak will be successfully integrated and as such, my score awards the benefit of the doubt.”