Vinopolpick Thursday – Quite Intriguing

August 7, 2014
Intriguing Wines
Whether you’re looking for something off the beaten path or trailblazers in their regions, look no further than these six outstanding producers.
Casa Ronsil, Clos Cibonne, Josef Leitz, Cadence Winery, Ramey Wine Cellars and Henri Boillot
Casa Ronsil – Val de Susa, Piedmont

In the historic Piedmont tradition, the indigenous variety, Avana was given the nickname ‘L’Enfant Terrible”, translating to ‘the terrible children” due to it being notoriously difficult to grow on mainly steep, rocky hillsides.  Well, suffice to say there is absolutely nothing terrible about this wine.

The ancient Avana grape shows up in texts dating back to 1606, generally thought to have been brought to Italy from France, when the Duchy of Savoy was at its peak in this region of Europe.   Just west of Turin and near the French border,  Avana flourishes in the Valsusa DOC, lying within 19 tiny, rural communities.   With some altitudes as high as 1100 meters, cultivation by hand is the only feasible option, contributing to pristine fruit quality in this mountainous region.

With longstanding family tradition, the Casa Ronsil house has remained within the Ronsil family since 1250.  Viticulture has continued to be an ancestral tradition, confirmed by a found document from 1346 in which Petrus Roncilli (Latin version of the name) elaborated on his wines.

This is a great introduction to a Piedmont wine, with Barolo’s and Barbaresco’s having a tendency to be slightly shocking to the average palate.   This particular wine has a beautiful brightness to it, with bing cherries and floral notes of violets and roses.  White pepper and dried herbs approach the mid palate, with a real lively acidity balanced by soft, lush tannins.  When tasting this wine for the first time, I could only think of pizza.  This is the ultimate pizza wine.  Your couch, a large pepperoni pizza with extra cheese and a bottle of L’Enfant Terrible, and your night will be far from terrible.

Casa Ronsil “L’Enfant Terrible,” Val De Susa 2011 ($17.95) $14 special, 3+ cases available
From a half hectare 100% Avana from the Valsusa DOC. The name translates as “Terrible children” as Avana was a notriously difficult to pick grape, mainly grown along steep, rocky hillsides. Typically a blending partner of classic Piedmont grapes, this varietal is known for its bright acidity and light peppery notes.

Clos Cibonne – Provence, France

Clos Cibonne’s 2012 Tibouren Rose (90% Tibouren, 10% Grenache) is unlike any other Provencal rose you have ever tried, and certainly one of the most unique.   For starters, Tibouren is the predominant variety used, as opposed to most rose’s from Provence coming from either Mourvèdre, Grenache , Syrah or Cinsault.  Tibouren is very aromatic, contributing a delicate, yet rich bouquet.    Clos Cibonne has added an interesting twist to their rose, steering away from the strictly stainless steel technique used by many.  Yes, the grapes are fermented in stainless steel,  but then the wine takes an unusual turn and is aged for one year in 100-year-old, 5,000 liter foudres.  These giant wooden vats are blanketed with ‘flor’, the yeast that has been traditionally used for the production of Sherry.    This yeast is used as a protective veil to prevent the wine from becoming oxidized.  This technique truly creates a one of a kind rose, with multiple layers of complexity.   This is a must for fans of Sherry and Jura and an excitingly different addition for the rose lovers.

Clos Cibonne Cotes de Provence Cuvee Tradition Rose 2012 ($27.95) $24 special, 24 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92 points
“Pale orange. Fresh cherry, potpourri and blood orange on the deeply scented nose. Supple and expansive on the palate, offering pliant red fruit preserve and succulent herb flavors brightened by chalky minerality. Becomes more tangy and floral with air and finishes with excellent clarity and sappy persistence. This rose has the power of a lighter red wine.”

Clos Cibonne Cotes de Provence Tibouren Cuvee Speciale des Vignettes Rose 2012 ($31.95) $28 special, 8 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 93 points
 “Light, bright orange. A complex, highly perfumed bouquet evokes dried red fruits, orange pith, smoky minerals and toasted nuts, with a spicy nuance building with air. Fleshy and dry on the palate, offering intense cherry and bitter rhubarb flavors and a touch of lavender pastille. Finishes with outstanding energy and mineral-driven persistence, the floral note repeating strongly.”

Weingut Josef Leitz – Rheingau 

Under the direction of Johannes Leitz, Weingut Josef Leitz has quickly earned a reputation as one of the top Rheingau producers.  Johannes took over the family estate (founded in 1744) in 1985 and has grown it from 2.6 hectares to over 40 in mostly Grand Cru sites on the steep Rüdesheimer Berg.  Once the home of the world’s most sought after and expensive wines, in the past 50 years the region has been dominated by mediocrity. Leitz’s estate vineyards lie entirely on the westernmost part of the Rheingau in the Rüdesheimer Berg – a steep, south-facing hillside of extremely old slate and quartzite planted entirely to Riesling.  The estate, established in 1744, was taken over by Johannes Leitz in 1985 after finishing his studies at acclaimed winemaking school Geisenheim.

Leitz carefully manages a strict collection of first growth Riesling vineyards in Rüdesheim, including Schlossberg, Rottland, and Roseneck.  Leitz trains his vines in a single-cane system, differing from the majority of Rheingau growers where the practice has long been a double-cane system. With the 2011 vintage, Leitz began to also designate the pre-1971 parcel names on select bottlings, highlighting his distinctive terroirs in parcels ‘Hinterhaus’ (Rottland), ‘Ehrenfels’ (Schlossberg), and ‘Katerloch’ (Roseneck).  The soils on this westernmost side of the Rheingau are composed of quartzite, very old gray slate, as well as some iron rich slate.  Johannes Leitz succeeds in producing wines that reflect the distinct terroir of his vineyards, wines of dense minerality that remain buoyant, fragrant, and texturally complex.

Leitz believes the most important steps in winemaking occur in the press house, choosing whole cluster to make the wines more opulent in leaner vintages. Because Leitz bottles his wines directly off of their gross lees from the casks in which they were fermented, it is most important to clarify the must as purely as possible before fermentation. “A lot of people talk about ‘yeast-contact’ but I think I’m the only one who actually does it.” Johannes Leitz chooses closures for each wine to reflect, and more appropriately serve, the cellar practices utilized for them in the cellar.  Stelvin closures are used for wines raised in stainless steel and fermented with inoculation, to preserve the freshness of their fruit and crisp nature; wines raised in cask and fermented spontaneously are bottled under cork to allow for more oxygen to develop each wine as it ages.  In 2011 Johannes was recognized by the esteemed Gault Millau as Winemaker of the Year.

The 2011 and 2012 vintages in Germany saw the production of excellent wines.  2011 saw a fair amount of unwanted botrytis which reduced the overall crop size.  In the Rheingau, most crops were reduced by 30%, both through poor and damp weather in the beginning of the season.  Warm weather at the end allowed winemakers to produce concentrated wines from the reduced yields.  2012 was a long, cool growing season with little unwanted botrytis.  Winemakers could choose how ripe and how much acidity they wanted in their wines based on when they picked as conditions were stable during harvest.

Weingut Josef Leitz Wines Available Now

Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Berg Kaisersteinfels Terrassen Riesling 2011 ($59.95) $39 special, 8 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 93 points
 “Wild aromas of white peach, cinnamon and lemon oil. Delicately sweet passion fruit flavor nicely supported by bracing saline minerality. A note of bacony spice animates the tangy finish. One of the finest off-dry rieslings of the vintage.”

Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Klosterlay Riesling Kabinett 2011 ($18.95) $14 special, 9 bottles available

Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Klosterlay Riesling Kabinett 2012 ($18.95) $14 special, 34 bottles available
Terry Theise: “The `12 richness and weight gives a lot of middle to a wine that’s sometimes almost constricted by its Altoid mintiness; this really is the best vintage ever, loads of lemon and eucalyptus but with a dense doughy mirabelle cream and saltiness. Vinous and rich.”

Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Berg Roseneck ‘Katerloch’ Riesling Trocken 2012 ($39.95) $33 special, 12 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91 points
 “($42) Discreet aromas of white peach, sage and smoked almond. Glossy, dense apricot pit fruit with sweet herbal inflections animate the palate. The sheer depth and spicy juiciness of this wine ensure an impressively long finish. Has poise and potential.”

Josef Leitz Rüdesheimer Berg Rottland “Hinterhaus” Riesling 2012 ($49.95) $39 special, 6 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92 points 
“($48) Rich herbal aromas of dried apricot, toasted hazelnut and bacon fat. Highly concentrated, unctuous yellow fruit flavors communicate an ideal balance of flesh and juiciness as well as noteworthy depth.  Finishes with impeccable balance and formidable length.”

Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Berg Schlossberg Riesling Trocken 2011 ($59.95) $49 special, 3 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91 points 
“Vibrant aromas of peach pit, almond and clove.  The ripe, crisp apricot fruit is well integrated into the wine’s salty, mineral frame.  The savory finish brings nut oils and a sophisticated finesse into play.  Still needs time.”

Cadence Winery – Washington State
Ben Smith and Gaye McNutt launched their winery, Cadence in 1998 after purchasing 10 acres on the now highly regarded Red Mountain vineyards.  In retrospect, being so new to agriculture and winemaking in general, Ben Smith says “that was the most fortuitous decision we made along the way.”  Ideally located in the rain shadow of the Cascade range and consisting of sandy loam soils, the Red Mountain AVA has developed a reputation for producing some of Washington’s best fruit, providing grapes for many of the state’s most sought-after cult wines.  Comprised of 4,040 acres as a result of the Ice-age Glacial lake Missoula floods,  Red Mountain is presently the smallest AVA in Washington state, acheiving status in 2001.   Well-established root systems are developed due to the soils containing high alkaline and calcium carbonate.  These roots allow the vines to reach deep, soaking up the necessary nutrients, minerals and appropriate moisture content.Inspired by the Old World and an affinity for well-structured wines in general, the couple decided to focus their winemaking production to Bordeaux style blends.   The Bel Canto is a blend of primarily Cabernet franc, with smaller percentages of Merlot and Petit Verdot grown on their Cara Mia vineyard that was established in 2004.   The Tapteil Vineyard comes from the oldest vines that Cadence works with, expressing a more mineral driven approach and truly showing Red Mountain’s highly acclaimed character.  The Tapteil blend consists of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc (Ben Smith’s favorite variety).  The Coda is Cadence’s second label, and is one of the greatest values coming out of Washington state.  With 34% merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 14% Petit Verdot, Coda shows a softer, fleshier approach with floral notes and dried red fruits shining through.Cadence Winery Wines Available Now

Cadence Bel Canto Red Mountain 2011 ($79.95) $55 special
Wine Advocate 94 points
 “More aromatic and complex, the 2011 Bel Canto (84% Cabernet Franc and 8% each of Merlot and Petit Verdot) has a juicy, lively feel with its exotic spices, dried flowers, smoke and assorted mulled blackberry and currant-styled fruit. Medium to full-bodied, nicely textured and already approachable and balanced, it will evolve nicely over the coming decade.”

Cadence Tapteil Red Mountain 2011 ($59.95) $47 special
Wine Advocate 94 points
 “More ripe, layered and textured, the 2011 Tapteil Vineyard is knockout stuff. Showing impressive black and blue fruits, wild herbs, underbrush and hints of flowers, it is full-bodied, concentrated and has plenty of sweet tannin and integrated acidity. Enjoy this beauty anytime over the coming decade or more.”

Cadence Coda Red Mountain 2011 ($29.95) $24 special
Stephen Tanzer 90 points 
“Medium red.  Aromas of redcurrant, blueberry, blackberry, pepper, bitter chocolate, menthol and nutty oak, accented by hints of violet and tea leaf.  Ripe and smooth yet cool, with an herbal lift and very good vinosity to the flavors of blackberry, blueberry and violet.  Juicy, elegant, youthful wine, finishing with smooth tannins and lingering flavors of red fruits, flowers and herbs.  Today this is very dominated by its cabernet content.”

Ramey Wine Cellars  – Napa Valley

After working through various positions in wineries as diverse as Lindeman’s in Australian and Chateau Petrus in Bordeaux, David Ramey decided to found his own winery where his education began: in the heart of California’s winemaking areas of Napa and Sonoma.  He contracted with grapegrowers in the Larry Hyde vineyard and produced a scant 260 cases a year for his first two harvests.  His reputation for high quality wine spread and so did the contracts: he added two blocks of old vine Wente Clone Chardonnay from the Rudd’s vineyards in Oakville.

Today the winery is known for producing high quality Chardonnays, Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux styles blends and Syrahs.  For David, this begins with using some of the finest vineyard land in California.  He sources from vines near the winery in Healdsburg.  The Westside Farms (Chardonnay), Woolsey Road (Wente Clone Chardonnay) and Ritchie Vineyards (Wente Clone Chardonnay) are in the Russian River Valley.  The Platt (Chardonnay), Cole Creek and Rodgers Creek Vineyards are in the Sonoma Coast.  Rodgers Creek and the Cole Creek Vineyards are the source of the Syrah and 5% Viognier that are co-fermented.  Pedregal Vineyard is in Oakville; the vineyard is red soil with 85% basalt rock.  It was planted in 1990 mostly with Cabernet and a touch of Petit Verdot.  Hyde and Hudson vineyards are in Carneros and are planted with mostly Wente Chardonnay.

In the winery, he employs several methods to create balanced, rich wines with depth and complexity.  The wines undergo full malolactic fermentation, fine lees stirring and aging, minimal to no filtration and a balanced approach to oak aging: wines see new oak aging depending upon the wine and vintage.  He uses natural yeast fermentation and partial destemming.

Ramey Wines Available Now or Arriving Soon

Ramey Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2010 ($59.95) $51.90 special, 21 bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points 
“Ramey’s 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon is a spherical wine with all of its elements in place. Mocha, espresso, blackberries, incense and graphite all come together in a wine that impresses for its exceptional overall balance. White flowers, cloves and asphalt all develop later, lending an element of exoticism that is simply compelling. The 2010 is a blend of valley floor and hillside fruit. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2030….In my mind, Ramey is one of the top wineries in the United States. Readers who aren’t familiar with these wines owe it to themselves to check them out.”

Ramey Wine Cellars Claret, Napa Valley 2011 ($39.95) $33 special, 36 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 90 points
 “Bright purple. Fresh, clove-accented red berry and cherry aromas show an energetic, sharply focused personality. Youthful, deep redcurrant and cherry-vanilla flavors pick up sweetness with air. Quite open, with no rough edges. Finishes with good breadth and length, leaving a subtle smoky note behind”
Robert Parker 89-91 points “The 2011 Claret is round, fresh, fruity and soft. It is a competently made red to drink with a steak or stew over the next 3-4years. David Ramey has long had one of the most impressive resumes for any California winemaker. He worked at Chateau Petrus in Bordeaux and for Christian Moueix at Dominus. He also consulted and worked for a number of high end Napa Valley wineries….Ramey’s early experience was primarily with Bordeaux varietals, so it’s not surprising that he continues to do a stunning job with his assortment of Bordeaux-based wines. As one might expect, the 2011s are soft, easy-to-drink efforts that many consumers may find more appealing than the 2010s, which are much bigger, richer and more classic.” 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 12% Petit Verdot, 10$ Syrah, 2% Cabernet Franc.

Ramey Wine Cellars Pedregal Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, 

Oakville 2010 ($219.95) $199 special, 9 bottles available
Robert Parker 98 points “As usual, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Pedregal Vineyard is a fabulous effort. The debut vintage of this cuvee was 2004, which is still quite young (I recently rated it 95). From the Oakville appellation, it is aged in 100% new Taransaud barrels, but sadly, only about 260 cases are made. The 2010 boasts beautiful notes of fruitcake, espresso roast, chocolate and black currants in its complex, full-bodied, concentrated, multi-dimensional personality. There is a huge up-side to this beauty as the tannins have not yet fully resolved. Give it another few years of bottle age and drink it over the following two decades or more.”Ramey Wine Cellars Syrah, Sonoma Coast 2011 ($41.95) $36 special, 36 bottles available
Antonio Galloni 94+ points
 “Ramey’s 2011 Syrah is flat-out gorgeous. In this vintage, the Syrah includes the Rodgers Creek fruit, so it is more varietal than is typically the case. Savory herbs, dried flowers, black cherries and black pepper are some of the many notes that flow through to the finish. Quite simply, the 2011 is an extraordinary wine in its price range.”
Henri Boillot 
These wines showed vibrancy, excellent acidity, genuine vineyard character, and they tasted damn good too! …In every case, the Boillot wines served as excellent representatives of the fundamental character one has come to expect from these vineyards.” –The Wine AdvocateThe Boillot family has been farming in Burgundy since 1855, making Henri a 5th generation vigneron in the Cote d’Or. In 1984 he left his family’s property (Domaine Jean Boillot) to pursue his own negociant business.  Stylistically, he wanted to produce more powerful and concentrated Pinots and Chardonnays than that of his father and grandfather.  He soon received rave reviews from the press, and also impressing his grandfather, decided to rejoin the estate. In 2005 he bought out his brothers and sisters, quickly changed the name of the winery to Domaine Henri Boillot to eliminate confusion of his brothers estate, Domaine Jean-Marc Boillot.Today, Domaine Henri Boillot consists of 14 hectares evenly split between white (mainly Premier Crus in Meursault and Puligny where he holds a monopole in the four hectares of Clos de la Mouchere) and red (several Premier Crus in Savigny, Beaune, and Volnay). He, like most top producers, is a tireless and fanatical farmer. He avoids the use of herbicides and insecticides, and prefers sustainable farming methods to preserve the integrity of the soil. To ensure low yields, vines are pruned heavily and the fruit is harvested as late as possible to ensure maximum phenolic maturity.

White grapes are gently crushed to avoid bitterness. Fermentation is done in large French barrique barrels to retain freshness and minerality. After malolactic fermentation is complete, the wines are bottled after 18 months in barrel. Red grapes are entirely hand harvested, and must pass through two rounds on the sorting table to ensure that only perfect berries make the cut. The Pinots are aged in barriques for 18 months and bottled unfined and unfiltered.

Stock List- Henri Boillot- All Available Now

Domaine Henri Boillot Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2011 ($349.95) $299 special, 4 bottles available
Burghound 95 points 
‘DON’T MISS!’ “There is just enough reduction present to suppress the nose though it seems reasonably clear that it is both ripe and clean. There is superb size, weight and mid-palate density to the mouth coating big-bodied flavors that ooze dry extract that does a fine job of buffering the firm acid spine on the very dry, even saline-infused finish. While I would call this a wine of finesse in the same vein as the Bienvenues, it is relatively fine in the context of the appellation. Either way, this delivers outstanding quality though be aware that it’s going to need plenty of cellar time.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Bienvenues-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2008 ($349.95) $299 special, 1 bottle available
94 points Burghound: 
“This is notably cooler and more elegant with an interesting mix of lime, honeysuckle, citrus peel and a trace of menthol that is followed by rich, generous and seductive middle weight flavors that are not nearly as big or powerful but there is a good deal more refinement present. The focused, intense and delicious finish is every bit as persistent and I very much like this understated effort.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Bienvenues-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2011 ($299.95) $249 special, 12 bottles available
94 points Burghound:
 “This is notably cooler and more elegant with an interesting mix of lime, honeysuckle, citrus peel and a trace of menthol that is followed by rich, generous and seductive middle weight flavors that are not nearly as big or powerful but there is a good deal more refinement present. The focused, intense and delicious finish is every bit as persistent and I very much like this understated effort.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Charmes, Meursault Premier Cru 2011 ($99.95) $79 special, 18 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points 
“Pale, bright yellow-green.  Subtle aromas of lemon, vanilla, white flowers and hawthorn.  Silky and creamy on the palate, with a fine-grained texture and a touch of salinity.  A delicate style of Charmes with an understated, slowly building finish.  All in finesse.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Chaumees, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($84.95) $69 special, 18 bottles available
Burghound 91 points
 ‘OUTSTANDING’ “This is aromatically quite different from the Embrazées with an exceptionally pure and cool nose that features extract of white orchard fruit, lemon zest, wet stone and subtle spice nuances. There is a sophisticated mouth feel to the generous yet refined middle weight flavors that possess a remarkably well-delineated, even chiseled finish that avoids any hint of austerity.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Clos de la Mouchere, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru 2010 ($179.95) $149 special, 4 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 95 (+?) points 
“Bright pale yellow.  Soil-driven aromas of grapefruit, fresh dill and flinty minerality.  Dense and brisk on entry, with outstanding grand cru intensity to the lemon and crushed stone flavors.  Conveys a strong impression of silex.  This boasts the sappiness of the best 2010s and finishes with outstanding stony, citric persistence.  Like a slap in the face today, this wine demands at least several years of bottle aging, at which point it may merit an even higher score.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Clos de la Mouchere, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($109.95) $99 special, 3 bottles available
Burghound 94 points 
‘DON’T MISS! OUTSTANDING’ “A very mild hint of reduction reduces the expressiveness of the otherwise cool and pure floral, citrus rind, stone and soft spice notes. There is plenty of volume to the rich, intense and mouth coating middle weight flavors that exude a fine minerality on the gorgeously complex, strikingly well-delineated and bone dry finish. This saline-infused and clearly built-to-age effort is spectacular.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Criots-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2010 ($249.95) $199 special, 4 bottles available
Burghound 93 points 
“Moderate wood frames ripe, dense and expressive yellow orchard fruit that also evidences discreet notes of exotic elements. The equally well-concentrated, powerful and imposingly scaled flavors possess an abundance of palate soaking dry extract, indeed so much so that this displays an almost chewy mouth feel on the massively persistent finish. This is not at present extraordinarily complex though there is so much material that my score offers the benefit of the doubt that it will develop in time as this will need at least a decade to arrive at its peak.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Criots-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2011 ($269.95) $219 special, 9 bottles available
Burghound 93 points 
“This is notably riper than the Caillerets with overtly exotic dried yellow fruit, spice and floral aromas. There is outstanding richness to the powerful and broad-shouldered flavors that possess a distinctly muscular mouth feel before culminating in an opulent, clean and very dry finish. This retains a fine sense of balance and while there is certainly fine complexity, it isn’t at the same level as displayed by the other grands crus in the range.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Embrazees, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru 2010 ($99.95) $79 special, 8 bottles available
Burghound 92 points 
“An elegant and attractively cool nose of stone, pear and citrus nuances gives way to well-delineated and energetic flavors that terminate in a cuts-like-a-knife and mineral-inflected finish. This is also very dry with fine complexity and almost Chablis-like salinity on the balanced backend.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Embrazees, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($79.95) $69 special, 13 bottles available
Burghound 90 points 
“A discreet application of oak surrounds the notably ripe aromas of several different yellow orchard fruit scents along with hints of the exotic. There is an appealing succulence to the broad-scaled flavors that manage to retain a fine sense of detail on the lightly mineral-driven, saline and vibrant finish. If this can add a bit more depth with time in the cellar my score may prove to be overly conservative.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Caillerets, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($149.95) $119 special, 3 bottles available
Wine Advocate 93-95 points
 “Another of the more intense wines here, the 2011 Puligny-Montrachet Les Caillerets stands out for its huge, extroverted personality. There is a pure drive and resonance in the aromas and flavors that is quite unusual for the vintage. Expressive yellow stone fruits, smoke and crushed rocks blossom on the large-scaled, muscular finish. Anticipated maturity: 2014+.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Puligny Montrachet Les Combettes, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($119.95) $99 special, 23 bottles available
Burghound 93 points 
‘SWEET SPOT OUTSTANDING’ “(the first vintage of this wine for Boillot, following his recent purchase of this parcel):  Pale green-tinged color.  Sexy aromas of lemon, lime, ripe stone fruits and hazelnut.  Lush and fine-grained, with silky flavors of stone fruits and hazelnut.  Can’t quite match the Folatieres for finesse, but this has more volume and power.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Perrieres, Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru 2011 ($109.95) $88 special, 7 bottles available
Burghound 93 points 
‘SWEET SPOT OUTSTANDING’ “A cool and pure nose features notes of citrus peel, pear, apple, wet stone and white peach. There is a lovely sense of refinement and underlying tension to the medium-bodied flavors that also coat the mouth with plenty of dry extract before culminating a saline mineral-driven finish. This is terrific.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Poruzots, Meursault Premier Cru 2011 ($99.95) $75 special, 13 bottles available
Burghound 91 points
 ‘OUTSTANDING “This is quite floral with additional aromas of white peach, yellow orchard fruit and resin. There is good volume and plenty of power to the sappy and mouth coating medium weight plus flavors that possess fine depth and excellent persistence. This is a big but balanced wine and very Poruzots in character.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Caillerets, Volnay Premier Cru 2009 ($169.95) $99 special, 10 bottles available
Burghound 93 points 
“Very mild reduction suppresses the red berry fruit somewhat but the notes of mocha, plum, stone and spice still shine through. The rich, minerally and impressively concentrated flavors brim with dry extract that buffers the solid tannic spine on the elegant, pure and balanced finish. Lovely.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Pommard 2010 ($59.95) $49 special, 3+ cases available
Antonio Galloni 90-92 points 
“The 2010 Pommard is pure sensuality. Sweet roses, dark red fruit and spices wrap around the palate in this supple, refined wine. The Pommard impresses for its elegance and richness. It is a beautiful and highly representative 2010. Sweet floral notes linger on the finish. The Pommard is made from vines in Clos Blanc, a 1er Cru vineyard. – Henri Boillot turned out a superb set of 2010 reds. Best of all, readers won’t have to shell out a fortune to enjoy them, as a number of the more modestly priced wines far exceed the quality of their respective appellations”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Rugiens, Pommard Premier Cru 2011 ($119.95) $99  special, 15 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92+ points
 “Good bright, deep red.  Redcurrant, pepper, iron and earth tones on the nose, lifted by a suggestion of dried flowers.  Reticent today but showing outstanding vinosity to its soil-driven flavors of redcurrant, spices, licorice, pepper and underbrush.  Best today on the very long, floral back end, where the firm tannins currently clamp down on the wine’s fruit.  This youthfully medicinal wine is tighter than the Volnay premier crus here and in need of a good seven or eight years of cellaring.  Incidentally, Sebastien Boillot describes the family’s 2011s as less charming than the ’10s and ’12s and believes that they will need long aging.

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Lavieres, Savigny-les-Beaune Premier Cru 2010 ($59.95) $49 special, 11 bottles available
Wine Advocate 90-92 points
 “The 2010 Savigny-les-Beaune Les Lavieres boasts striking inner perfume and an expressive core of dark red fruit. This is another big wine within the context of its appellation, but the balance is first-rate. Layers of fruit continue to build to the powerful, textured finish. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2025.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Lavieres, Savigny-les-Beaune Premier Cru 2011 ($69.95) $49 special, 36 bottles available
Burghound 89 points
 “A pungently earthy nose of lightly spiced plum and various dark pinot fruit aromas leads to energetic and well-detailed flavors that exude a fine minerality on the delicious and solidly persistent finish. I like the mouth feel as it’s relatively fine and about the only nit is a bit of gas so I would suggest decanting this if you’re going to try a bottle young.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Volnay 2010 ($59.95) $49 special, 3+ cases available
Burghound 90 points
 ‘OUTSTANDING TOP VALUE’ “This is more aromatically reserved with an elegant nose of red and dark pinot fruit, earth and an interesting note of smoked tea. There is even more refinement to the mouth feel of the lightly mineral-infused medium-bodied flavors that possess a dusty and rather serious finish of impeccable balance and persistence. This may be labeled as a villages but it’s easily of 1er quality.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Chevrets, Volnay Premier Cru 2011 ($99.95) $77 special, 14 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points 
“Bright red-ruby.  Rather brooding aromas of cassis, blackberry, smoke and licorice are pure and discreet.  Surprisingly rich on entry, then lush and seamless in the middle, but with very good acidity framing and lifting the black fruit and game flavors.  The powerful, rising finish features building tannins and a distinct thick-skinned character.  The old vines in Boillot’s parcel were strongly affected by millerandage, which largely explains this wine’s extra measure of texture and concentration.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Les Fremiets, Volnay Premier Cru 2011 ($99.95) $77 special, 17 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points 
“Deep red-ruby.  Highly perfumed, musky aromas of black raspberry and smoky minerality.  Large-scaled, round and rich but not yet complex; less creamy and fine-grained than the Chevrets, showing a youthful toughness from the calcaire-rich soil.  Despite the fact that this was the first pinot parcel Boillot picked in 2011, this wine relies more on its big, ripe tannins than on its acids for balance.  Really saturates the palate on the aftertaste.”

Domaine Henri Boillot Santenots, Volnay Premier Cru 2011 ($119.95) $99 special, 18 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points 
“Deep red-ruby.  Black raspberry, dark chocolate, game and a wild hint of leather on the nose, with a floral element emerging with air.  Sweet, rich, broad and deep, boasting a velour-like, utterly mouthfilling texture that’s rare for the vintage.  Excellent acidity gives this firmly tannic, very long wine terrific energy and lift.  Very strong Santenots.”



Just a reminder about our current shipping specials during this season:We offer flat rate shipping on any size single / single shipment order
-to Oregon for $17,
-Washington & Idaho for $20,
-and California for $25For our friends east of the Rockies,
we are offering 3 day select shipping for the same price as ground.

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