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FICOFI in Paris: Louis Roederer, E Guigal & Louis Jadot

December 11, 2017
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Photo: Ryan Chen

On a weekend that Paris mourned the passing of their pop icon Johnny Hallyday where even the Eiffel Tower was shrouded in darkness, the Palais des Grands Crus convention organised by FICOFI still went ahead, an annual event to sign off the year with a blast. Preceding that, though, was a promenade generously hosted by Louis Roederer, E Guigal and Louis Jadot at the Hotel de Crillon on 09 December 2017 that was well attended by about 300 members and their guests who have specially flown in from all corners of the globe. Both Mr and Mrs Marcel Guigal (the second generation owner after his father Etienne) were in attendance, both absolutely down-to-earth folks without any pretensions who liked nothing better than to share their wines with those who appreciate. It was also good to meet up, once again, with M. Thibault Gagey, son of Pierre-Henry of Louis Jadot. As the evening wore on, the chatter grew louder and, every now and then, one would hear the splintering crash of glasses accidentally smashing onto the expensive parquet, always a good sign of a successful party. In the space of two hours, I think I have managed to cover everything except for the 2013 trio of Guigal’s La La’s. There is only so much one’s palate and senses can absorb on a bitterly cold Paris winter night.

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Philippe Capdouze flanked by M. Thibault Gagey and Marcel Guigal

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2008 Louis Roederer. Traditional champagne blend, predominantly pinot noir. Clean, crisp and dry, displaying great concentration of fruit with biting intensity.

2010 Louis Roederer Blanc de Blancs. Great presence  and intensity of white citrus, lime and pomelo supported by understated minerals, displaying great acidity and mouthfeel. Cool and inviting, not too dry. Good finish.

20171209_210154.jpg2012 Louis Roederer Rose. Excellent presence with notes of grapefruit and complex tangerines, quite full and rounded, displaying great sparkle, brilliance and balance, finishing well. Superb.

2009 Louis Roederer Cristal. Lifted notes of delicate lime and clear citrus. Tight with smoky tones, very fresh with plenty of vibrant intensity and tension, just slightly stern, finishing with traces of pomelo and ferrous elements.

2014 Domaine Louis Jadot Puligny-Montrachet Les Pucelles 1er. Poured from double magnum. Closed, showing just traces of gentle tropical fruits and banana peel but absolutely wonderful in mouthfeel where it is dry and supple with the distilled essence of delicate crème and white floral fragrance, displaying lovely intensity and acidity, finishing with superb length and lasting mouthfeel. Outstanding.

2013 Domaine Louis Jadot Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru. Gentle bouquet of tropical fruits and white flowers with overtones of paraffin, displaying characteristic Batard tone on the palate with its placid quiet elegance, understated acidity and minerals. Needed some coaxing but it’s all there.

2014 Domaine Louis Jadot Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru. Lifted delicate tones of white pepper, slightly tangy with racy character. Very even and seamless on the palate, displaying lovely lift with understated acidity and quiet intensity from the superb depth and concentration of glorious fruit. Richly elegant. Outstanding.

2010 Domaine Louis Jadot Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru. More racy and more developed than the 2014, quite open and lifted, leaning towards a more minerally character with good acidity and structure though not the best in depth nor detail.

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1969 Domaine Louis Jadot Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru. Dusty red, showing dark cherries and ripe strawberries with plenty of great acidity and lift, not drying out. Ageing gracefully and still holding up very well.

2011 Domaine Louis Jadot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru. Smoky tones, sweet incense, ripe cherries and camphor dominate on the nose, though more minerally with earthy tones on the palate, showing good concentration and acidity but somewhat lean and austere, finishing with a spicy feel.

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2013 Domaine Louis Jadot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru. Forward balance of cherries and raspberries, slightly angular from the dominant acidity, lacking in layering.

2014 Domaine Louis Jadot Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru. Generous in delicate red fruits. Highly supple, showing good presence and acidity, soft and feminine in character..

2013 Domaine Louis Jadot Beaune Clos des Ursules 1er, poured from double magnum. Clear ruby. Lively with excellent fullness and delicacy, exuding ripe red cherries, camphor and strawberries with a dash of earth. Open and accessible, finishing with excellent linearity and structure. A revelation.

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2014 Domaine Louis Jadot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru. Lifted tones of red fruits and cherries supported by earthy minerals. Ripe, supple and richly detailed. Well structured with good intensity and concentration. Excellent.

2006 Domaine Louis Jadot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru. Lifted aromas of rose petals, cherries, dark ash and earthy minerals. Well structured but unsmiling, finishing with stern spicy tones.

2009 Domaine Louis Jadot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru. Cherries and red fruits dominate with good lift, displaying the classic structured tone of this plot with good definition. Very clean and lean, finishing with a spicy trace.

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Yours truly with Mr & Mrs Marcel Guigal

1999 E Guigal Cote Rotie La Landonne. This wine has developed very well over time, exuding smoke, earth and complex red fruits with a tangerine core, displaying great balance and presence, finishing well. Yet to peak. Excellent.

1999 E Guigal Cote Rotie La Turque. Wonderful earthy pungency with lifted plummy tones, displaying great concentration and depth with excellent definition and focus, finishing with a dash of spice amidst smoky overtones, its melted tannins imparting a distinct feminine tone. Excellent.

1999 E Guigal Cote Rotie La Mouline. Dark red. Lifted aromas of red fruits and dark cherries with an abundance of black pepper and red currants on the palate, showing good tannin structure and intensity though not much in layering, finishing with spicy tones.

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20171209_204727.jpg2013 E Guigal Cote Rotie Chateau d’Ampuis. Darkly intense with a generous tone of ripe warm fruit, displaying a marked alcoholic trace, somewhat austere and unsettled at this stage, yet to unfurl its true colours.

2016 E Guigal La Doriane Condrieu. Dominant tones of grassy elements and morning dew, strewn with white pepper and oriental herbal elements, showing good concentration but awkward now. Needs time.

1990 E Guigal Cote Rotie Hommage a Etienne Guigal, poured from double magnum. Marked by savoury tones of smoked meat amidst dark currants and earthy minerals, showing good definition but somewhat stern. Still remarkably youthful.

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