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Robert Ampeau, JC Ramonet, JM Pillot, Bertagna, Seguin-Manuel, Georges Lignier, Arnoux-Lachaux, Arlaud, de L’Arlot…

January 8, 2020

20191124_142600.jpgDomaine Wines organised a day-long Burgundy seminar on 24 November 2019 at Jade Palace, Singapore, that lasted from 1030h to 1800h tutored by arguably the doyen of Burgundy wines Monsieur Jean-Pierre Renard. The line-up was meant to explore the range of soils, unusual styles (whites of Côte-de-Nuits, Chassagne reds), mature wines and the extra dimension that comes from old vines, traversing village to premier cru to grand cru. I must say every bottle was drinking really well, proving that value exists at all price points, while the mature stuff from Robert Ampeau was truly outstanding.

2016 Domaine Thibert Pouilly-Fuissé Les Cras. From vines grown on limestone soils where 2016 was an excellent but low-yielding vintage due to stormy weather, mildew and frost. Showing a lovely luminosity, this wine opens with an effusive bouquet of green apples, melons and aromatic tropical fruit, rather impressive in its rich chromatic tone, excellent presence and concentration. Structured with crisp acidity, displaying very clean precision, clarity and transparency, a tad more minerally at its glowing expansive finish. Pouilly-Fuissé, probably the best known commune of the Mâconnais, will soon have 22 premier crus in its inaugural classification that is likely to begin with the 2019 vintage. That means prices will skyrocket very soon. Buy now.

2017 Domaine Jean-Claude Ramonet Pernand-Vergelesses Les Belles Filles Blanc. Grown on limestone soils near Corton-Charlemagne. From an outstanding vintage where early budding inspired early harvest, this wine opens with a smooth gentle reductive nose, just a tad forward as it hinted at papaya and tropical fruits. The palate is considerably deeper with darker shades amid signs of early complexity, displaying great freshness with a distinctive well-defined dry chalkiness that shone with an almost chiselled quality, very well integrated with fine linearity as it finished with a lovely white floral glow. Excellent.

2017 Domaine Jean-Claude Ramonet Puligny-Montrachet Les Enseignères. From a site just beneath Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet, dominated by limestone soils without much clay that offer good drainage. Pale yellow greenish hue. Closed on the nose, proffering just faint glimpses of morning dew and traces of green elements. Equally restrained on the palate in spite of its fullish tone, dominated by white characters that impart understated dry chalkiness with excellent subtle acidity, superbly balanced and harmonious, finishing with a refined elegance that lingered with great persistence. Superb.

2013 Domaine Jean-Marc Pillot Chassagne-Montrachet Morgeot Blanc 1er. Beautiful luminosity. Its bouquet is somewhat elusive, slightly buttery with a hint of creme. Good presence, dominated by white fruits and chalk with a slim sleek profile, showing very fine acidity and structure with overtones of nutmeg though the finish could do with better resolution.

2013 Domaine Jean-Marc Pillot Chassagne-Montrachet Morgeot Rouge 1er. Coming from the same kind of soil as Gevrey, this pinot of Chassagne displays a slightly darker shade of red, boasting a fresh generous bouquet of rose petals and dark cherries with a delicious lift, matched by sleek refined acidity with a vegetal hint amid raw darkish undertones, structured with understated tannins at its dryish finish.

CÔTE DE NUITS BLANC

2013 Domaine Bertagna Vougeot Les Cras 1er. Lovely luminosity. Restrained gentle bouquet of yellow citrus and chalk, slightly warm, featuring dense white fruits on the palate with excellent fullness, structured with fine acidity and subtle minerals that yielded good detail. Very well balanced with refined intensity, finishing with clean white tones.

2011 Domaine De L’Arlot Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos de L’Arlot Blanc 1er. This monopole is laced with a tiny bit of pinot gris, showing deep luminosity with an unique nutty bouquet underscored with pineapples and jackfruit, forward with an attractive delicious lift. Softly rounded on the palate with highly subtle white fruits that reveal open delicate intensity, distinctly feminine as it finished with a certain restrain and excellent refinement.

CÔTE DE BEAUNE ROUGE

2015 Domaine Seguin-Manuel Beaune Champimonts 1er. Dark fruits, wild berries and dark cherries dominate with quite a delicious glow. Structured with very good concentration and refined supple tannins that reveal soft inner detail, possessing good acidity and balance without any burliness sometimes associated with Cote de Beaune, just a tad short.

2013 Domaine Pavelot Savigny-les-Beaune Aux Guettes 1er. Very good colour. Rich delicious bouquet of dark cherries, quite effusive, along with other darkish vegetal undertones while the palate is marked by understated red fruits and bright minerals, rounded with good concentration at just the right acidity. Not much depth here but still very fine on the whole, finishing well.

2014 Domaine Nicolas Rossignol Pommard Chaponnieres 1er. Darkish colour. Exudes a very warm earthy pungency that is undoubtedly attractive. Rounded, fleshy and open. Imbued with excellent presence and fullness, displaying sleek acidity with some fleeting intensity though it was never the opulent sort. Drinking well.

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CÔTE DE NUITS 1er

2011 Domaine de L’Arlot Nuits-Saint-Georges Clos des Forets 1er. Monopole. Good colour. Not much coming through on the nose though the palate shows lovely suppleness and acidity, structured with subdued tannins. Open with an attractive mild intensity that goes well with its easy relaxed feel, finishing very gently, maintaining great balance throughout but just a tad short.

2011 Domaine Bertagna Vougeot Clos de la Perriere 1er. Good colour. Restrained. Gently perfumed. Structured with plummy dark fruit with some bright spots. Exudes very fine presence and understated acidity, highly supple, opening up with mild intensity towards its finish.

2014 Domaine Arlaud Morey-Saint-Denis Les Ruchots 1er. Good colour. Richly endowed with red fruits, dark currants and cherries that imparted excellent fullness and depth. Open with very fine detail, precision and suppleness. Very delicate balance. Plenty of finesse. Superb.

2013 Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux Vosne-Romanee Les Maizieres 1er. Deep crimson. Reticent, proffering just glimpses of rose petals and cherries. The palate, though, is open and highly supple with good presence and very fine gentle intensity, imparting a highly attractive delicate quality but there isn’t much layering here. Finished with understated well-managed fine biting tannins, just a bit short.

2015 Domaine Seguin-Manuel Chambolle-Musigny Les Charmes 1er. Lovely crimson hue, exuding bright red fruits with a superb delicate presence. Very fleshy and supple, beautifully open with elegant understated tannins. Great refinement and integration. Excellent.

2016 Domaine Georges Lignier Gevrey-Chambertin Les Combottes 1er. Classic pinot tint, proffering attractive aromas of red fruits. Still a little tight and narrow on the palate with undertones of stern ferrous minerals though there is excellent fullness and intensity. Needs time to unravel and flesh out.

GRAND CRU

2014 Domaine Georges Lignier Clos Saint-Denis Grand Cru. Classic pinot tint. Ripe red fruits, recessed oak with some cherries and peaches dominate with delicious lift. Highly refined. Structured with svelte tannins that yielded great definition and detail. Very well balanced, just a tad short.

2013 Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux Echezeaux Grand Cru. Darker shade of pinot. Sharper on the nose though the fruit is surprisingly restrained. Gloriously ripe on the palate, open with very good balance and smooth intensity. Good refinement.

2013 Domaine Seguin-Manuel Clos Vougeot Grand Cru. Deep purple, proffering sweet dark berries that appear somewhat restrained. Rather full and supple, structured with very fine acidity. Vivacious with plenty of zest, seemingly a bit too eager to please but drinking well.

2012 Domaine Bertagna Corton Les Grandes Lolieres Grand Cru. Deep garnet red, exuding a restrained warmth with characters of ripe plums and haw. Open and fleshy, displaying great suppleness on a backdrop of very subtle dry understated tannins. Superbly integrated with a lovely feminine presence. Excellent.

2010 Domaine Bouchard Pere at Fils Chambertin-Clos de Beze Grand Cru. Classic pinot tint with some crimson. Quite glorious on the nose with a suggestion of warm red fruits. Medium-full. Distinctly feminine in its rounded suppleness and excellent ripeness, seamlessly integrated with very smooth understated tannins. Great refinement and elegance. Excellent.

2008 Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé Musigny Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru. Deep crimson, showing some early complexity on the nose. Softly supple, laced with sublime acidity that imparted teasing fleeting intensity of dark cherries, currants and dark roses amid overtones of glycerine that betrayed its youth, underscored by subdued earthy details and ferrous minerals. Rounded with good integration. Dry finish. Excellent potential.

2010 Domaine Francois Lamarche La Grande Rue Grand Cru. Classic pinot tint. Glorious bouquet of ripe cherries, rose petals, dark berries and violets that evoke warm hues with delicious lift. Brightly lit and open with svelte velvety tannins, softly supple, superbly integrated with understated but exciting tannins. Lovely charm, finishing with regal elegance. Outstanding.

OLD WINES

1976 Domaine Robert Ampeau Volnay Santenots 1er. Dark brownish hue, proffering notes of ash, ember and plummy tones with a delicious trace that culminated in lovely complex aromas. Surprisingly fresh and full, imbued with ample volume of ripe dark fruits and currants that exude sweet intensity. Still holding up very well. Amazing!

1996 Domaine Robert Ampeau Volnay Santenots 1er. Dark brown, still deeply coloured. Delicious nose of glycerine and complex mature fruit, greatly lifted. Still rather full and remarkably fresh, carrying a deeper streak of dark fruit. Has tremendous verve and concentration. Highly seamless with a distinct feminine character. Feels like it’s yet to peak. Superb!

2015 Domaine Nicolas Rossignol Volnay Santenots 1er. Dark impenetrable crimson. Sweet savoury tones amidst ripe mulberries and raspberries on the nose. Deeply layered in rich dark fruits and refined minerals that carried plenty of energy and fine intensity, exuding great tone. Rounded with sophisticated tannins. Huge potential.

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1996 Domaine Robert Ampeau Meursault-Perrieres 1er. Lovely luminosity. Wonderful delicate lift of tangerines, yellow citrus and cool icing matched with a vibrant palate of chiselled chalky minerals, nutty almonds and aged olives. Still imbued with excellent fullness, youthful intensity and freshness. Finished well with a bit of glazed quality. Great sophistication. Superb.

1996 Domaine Robert Ampeau Meursault-Charmes 1er. Lovely luminosity. Fleeting delicate bouquet, quite seductive with some lovely complexity. The palate is still incredibly vibrant and youthful in spite of the presence of mature tangerines and citrus, displaying great sublime acidity and freshness, finishing with an expansive white floral tone. Truly fabulous.

1996 Domaine Robert Ampeau Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes 1er. Superb luminosity, proffering green capsicum on the nose while white and yellow citrus dominate with lovely gentle intensity, beautifully balanced with subtle open intensity. Excellent.

VIEILLES VIGNES

2015 Domaine Jean-Marc Pillot Chassagne-Montrachet Vergers 1er. Pale. Lovely nose of nutmeg and green fruits, excellent in density yet delicate with overtones of ash. Quite full and chalky with a burnished tone, carrying good energy with a lovely open intensity, displaying great balance and easy charm. Superb.

2015 Domaine Jean-Marc Pillot Chassagne-Montrachet Vergers 1er Clos Saint Marc. From 100 year-old vines. This special bottling opens with a wonderful depth of fruit that’s already glowing with some gentle complexity, beautifully open with superb unwavering concentration that possessed even greater depth and presence than the standard bottling above, exuding great delicacy and regal elegance. Wonderfully balanced and proportioned. Highly cerebral. Outstanding.

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