Monday, April 9, 2012

Bourgogne Odds and Ends

An ugly label, an attractive wine

Tomer Gal came out with the Burgundy Wine Collection 2012 catalog a couple of months ago. The following wines from said catalog each represent some sort of new experience for me.

My first Cremant de Bourgogne.

Vitteaut-Alberti, Crémant de Bourgogne, Blanc de Blancs Brut, n..v (actually all 2009 fruit)

This is a blend of 80% Chardonnay and 20% Aligote. It's the first wine listed in the winery's site, so presumably it's the entry level. This is a nice wine, delicious (the bottle was gone within ninety minutes) not profound nor complex nor especially long, and the mousse is coarse and unattractive, but at its price, it's a very attractive alternative to  the Cavas imported locally. It has a mineral tinge to it, and is also suitably yeasty, but all that's backed up by solid fruit, some of which has a tropical characters, which I think is contributed by the vintage - although I've also come across it in some Aligote based wines, so who knows. (Mar. 2, 2012)

90 NIS.

My first l'Arlot.

Domaine de l'Arlot, Côte de Nuits Villages, Clos du Chapeau, 2009

The domaine is one of the new additions to Tomer Gal's catalog this year and this wine is basically the domaine's entry-level, one step up from Bourgogne. It shows earthy, slightly vegetal Pinot fruit, with a healthy pinch of exotic spices and a lightly meaty pungency. The fruit is very red, and despite the ripeness of the vintages, it is on the light-bodied side of the Pinot Noir spectrum, with soft tannins that hint at savoriness and a welcome (to my tastes) astringency. Air brings out a very rustic vivacity and the final glass, after three hours, is really something else. (Mar. 3, 2012)

160 NIS.

Yowsah! Another winner!

I've had Beaune reds, of course, but never this simple AOC. Of course, Vougeraie always make good value entry level wines (e.g. Terres de Famille) wines, but it's an extra thrill and interest to have one from a relatively specific locale.

Domaine De La Vougeraie, Cote de Beaune, Les Pierres Blanches, 2009

This here is just what I would like to get from all young Burgundy reds. Specifically, I get aromas of suave red fruit with a mineral streak, reminiscent of gunpowder, a funky overlay as well, and, finally, a just-so slightly roasted character in keeping with the warm vintage, And a tasty, savory fruit and soft tannin combo on the palate, where there's a lightly green herbal streak, albeit the crunchy fruit complements it quite well, and the saline finish is especially delicious. Will it age? Probably, but this is so good right now - so much exactly what I like, right now - that I might not bother to find out. (Mar. 14, 2012)

150 NIS.

Heritiers du Comte Lafon, Vire-Clesse, 2010

I'm a fan of Lafon's Macon project and this year Tomer has added a new village bottling to the catalog, the Vire-Clesse, which is the first Macon village to be awarded its own AOC without the Macon prefix. Technically, legally, I'm not sure it's a huge difference, but supposedly it's due to the higher level of quality in the Macon-Vire and Macon-Clesse villages, of which the new AOC was comprised. Since the level of wine-making at Heritiers du Comte Lafon is very high, the difference between the many Macon labels is usually that of terroir rather than quality, so this doesn't feel like a leap upwards, compared to the wines I've drunk in the past, but it's quite lively and lovely, with aromas of fossil, clay, dried grass and citrus fruit, which reverberate on the palate. Like other Burgundy whites south of the Cote, it's rounder and somewhat sweeter than its more prestigious brethren (but the tasty acidity restrains the fruit nicely), but with less oak and earlier approachability, there's almost no risk of heartbreak - just buy and pop. If you've been reading this blog because you share my tastes, you'll love it. (Mar. 16, 2012)

150 NIS.

Roulot is hardly a recent addition to the portfolio and I've tasted the domaine's wares in the past, but never this favorite among the local cognescenti.

Domaine Guy Roulot, Bourgogne Blanc, 2009

This is the kind of cerebral wine that gives white Burgundies their great name. And best of all, you don't need to tempt pre-mox fate by aging it. I get the Meursault terroir, what with the roasted cashews on the nose, but there's plenty of flint and clay and citrus as well, no pears, and the palate is an elegant and light specimen for the warm vintage. Very tasty, with a saline, chalky finish, and an acid backbone that grows bolder with air and warmth. Should keep for a couple of years. (Mar 19, 2012)

140 NIS.

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