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2017 Arlaud Gev-Chambertin Combottes 1er, 2014 Duroche Gev-Chambertin Aux Etelois, 1989 Paul Jaboulet Hermitage La Chapelle

June 18, 2021

In case you haven’t noticed, a quantum leap in the pricing of burgundy has begun several months ago and is continuing unabated. Fueled by low yields of recent vintages and greed on the part of producers, retailers and consumers alike (the well-heeled unable to spend on travel thanks to Covid), what was already expensive is now even more outrageously priced. It is not uncommon nowadays to receive offers for village wines costing above SGD300. And people are still buying! The smart money would be to source those that do not cost an arm or leg coming from plots adjacent to grand crus. Surely these cannot really go wrong. A look at Gevrey-Chambertin reveals Aux Combottes 1er deliciously sandwiched between Latricières GC and Clos de la Roche GC in an unbroken stretch of grand cru running from north to south, while the village wine of Aux Etelois abuts Griotte-Chambertin GC and Chapelle-Chambertin GC to the west. Indeed, a side-by-side comparison, kindly hosted by Sir Bob on 15 June 2021, showed both Combottes 1er and Etelois punching well above their weight. In fact, a segment of Aux Combottes 1er actually lies within Latricières GC…..’nuff said.

2006 Champagne Louis Roederer Cristal, courtesy of Sir Bob. Nose of high-toned citrus and white incense tinged with grapefruit. Medium-full, imbued with excellent dry presence of pomelo and bitter lemon that exude sweet gentle intensity within a sheen of very fine soft bubbles. Excellent sophistication.

2012 Domaine Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet Les Pucelles 1er, courtesy of Vic. Mind-blowing bouquet of waxy, oily textures leading to a lovely fullness and detailed depth of nutmeg, pineapples and exotic white fruits that exert superb verve and intensity with fine transparency. Far more developed and extroverted than a bottle tasted last year. Excellent, but truly a waste to pop now.

2017 Domaine Arlaud Gevrey-Chambertin Aux Combottes 1er. Deep ruby. Exudes a lovely perfumed fragrance amid a sheen of paraffin. Full but silky smooth, displaying a lovely supple intensity of fresh dark cherries and red fruits with exemplary balance, yielding good detail and excellent purity. Highly refined and elegant.

2014 Domaine Duroche Gevrey-Chambertin Aux Etelois, courtesy of LF. Lovely pinot tint, proffering plummy tones on the nose with some early complexity whilst concentrated dark hues dominate on the palate with a rich supple presence of black fruits and currants that exert fine open intensity. Well extracted but not overdone. Excellent potential.

1989 Domaine Paul Jaboulet Aine Hermitage La Chapelle, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind but its Rhône character is unmistakable. Deep garnet red. Forward dark hues of fresh shoe polish on the nose. Equally bold on the palate where a delicious complex of black plums, licorice and cinnamon dominate with rounded intensity amid varnished hues, still quite amazingly fresh and youthful. Shows good linearity all through to its lingering minty finish.

1999 Domaine Louis Jadot Échezeaux Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Tasted blind. Deep garnet red. Forward nose red fruits though, curiously, they seem somewhat recessed on the medium-full palate, overshadowed by broad swathes of fine acidity and darker tones that sweep across with a bold sweetish density.

2007 Claude Dugat La Gibryotte Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru, courtesy of Kieron. Tasted blind. Deep crimson. Intense profusion of red cherries and currants on the nose. Wonderfully full and voluptuous, imbued with supple verve and intensity from its abundant depth, finishing with good length amid a trace of sweetness.

1998 Williams Selyem Hirsch Vineyard, courtesy of LF. Tasted blind. Rather dark. Its bouquet of fresh red fruits, cherries and haw is clearly pinot in character yet distinctly un-Burgundian. Quite markedly intense with forward darkish tones underscored by sublime acidity, displaying youthful verve and supple intensity. We were spot-on.

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