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FICOFI : Maison Joseph Drouhin 2015, Domaine Prieure-Roch 2015

May 23, 2017

Some notes from a conjoint presentation of the wines of 2015 from Maison Joseph Drouhin and Domaine Prieure-Roch organised by FICOFI at The Four Seasons, Singapore, on 4th April 2017 where it was wonderful to catch up, once again, with M. Jean-Paul Dumond (Sales Director of Drouhin) and the youthful-looking M. Yannick Champ, winemaker and co-geriant of the latter, who naturally exudes magnetic charm amongst the female species. With almost constant regularity every year around this time at the start of the en primeur campaign, we keep hearing about vintners and merchants proclaiming the latest vintage to be the “best ever”. Global warming has certainly played its part in ensuring more days of constant warm temperatures during the ripening period, so much so that in Burgundy, the delicate pinot noir grapes are now harvested 2-3 weeks earlier than usual compared with, perhaps, just 3-4 years ago. Having tasted the wines, I can say with certainty that 2015 is truly magnificent for the reds, structured and richly layered with lovely fruit, gorgeous acidity and great definition, already drinking very well at this stage which is always a good indicator of longevity in bottle. Even the reds of Domaine Prieure-Roch, normally sullen and awkward in its infancy, were remarkably opulent, already accessible and singing. The whites are excellent too, though they do not surpass the efforts of 2014 which remain supreme, just missing the very last ounce of brio or effortlessness.

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2007 Delamotte Blancs de Blanc. Rich in crème, chalky minerals and vanilla, tight and closed on the palate for now although there is no doubting the fullness in concentration, firm tannins and excellent acidity.

2015 Joseph Drouhin Chassagne-Montrachet Morgeots 1er Marquis de Laguiche. Lifted aromas of grassy elements with whiffs of mint and white flowers, displaying great concentration, creamy richness and lovely acidity, very well integrated. Excellent.

2015 Joseph Drouhin Criots-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru. Absolutely gorgeous bouquet of white flowers and complex citrus, rich and fleshy with crème and dense minerals in equal measure, displaying great supporting acidity, linearity and balance. Always a pleasure to re-visit this rarity from Drouhin, limited to only 300 bottles annually.

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2015 Joseph Drouhin Chambolle-Musigny Les Amoureuses 1er. Glorious bouquet of dark berries, dark roses and dark cherries with a rather bright tone on the palate where there is excellent fullness, acidity and depth, almost masculine, subtly structured with fine tannins.

2015 Joseph Drouhin Grands Echezeaux Grand Cru. Gorgeous notes of rose petals and dark cherries emerge from a deep abyss of contrasting earthiness, fleshing out with great loveliness, acidity and elegance. Beautifully proportioned, quite full but still retaining good delicacy. Not at all overbearing. Excellent.

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2015 Domaine Prieure-Roch Nuit-Saint-Georges Clos des Corvees 1er. Don’t be fooled by the uninviting dusky redness, for this monopole is exceptionally full, recalling dark roses and cherries touched by high toned minerals and traces of salt that created some lovely tension across the palate. Rounded, fleshy and feminine, replete with a streak of complex minerals amidst a deeper vein of fruit, just a little short and missing in structure. Still very fine.

2015 Domaine Prieure-Roch Vosne-Romanee Les Suchots 1er. The bouquet here is exceptionally deep and alluring, ample in dark cherries and rose petals with lovely poise and wonderful purity of fruit, open with gorgeous acidity and superb definition, just a tad short now but will correct in bottle with time. Excellent.

2015 Domaine Prieure-Roch Clos Vougeot Grand Cru. Considerably darker with a forward balance of dark cherries and rose petals, this much maligned grand cru is most lovely on the nose but tight on the palate with crisp acidity where its remains unresolved, losing definition towards the finish.

2015 Domaine Prieure-Roch Chambertin-Clos des Beze Grand Cru. Under Yannick Champ, the very best of the Cote de Nuits is a wine of masculine proportion, ample in earth, dark berries, red fruits and dark cherries supported by fine supple tannins with subtle minerality and acidity, its quiet intensity and power controlled with absolute precision, already very open and accessible and superbly balanced, revealing a rich deeper vein of pure fruit as it sat in the glass. Glorious stuff.

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