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Domaine du Clos de Tart 2012, 2014 & 2016

March 29, 2022

I had the distinct honour and pleasure of hosting Monsieur Jacques Devauges, the current winemaker of Domaine des Lambrays since 2019, at a private dinner at Imperial Treasure Great World, Singapore, on 26 March 2022. Jacques still recalls our visit to his cellar at Domaine du Clos de Tart four years ago (he had been winemaker there from 2015-18) where he had demonstrated his parcellaire approach to winemaking that involved splitting the entire monopole into eight subplots based on each unique micro-terroir, vinifying each separately before combining the cuvées together again to form the Grand Cru. IMG-20220329-WA0019.jpgBased on the mini-vertical that we’d assembled that evening, it is clear that Jacques’ method works, for the 2016 (made by Jacques and which we had tasted from barrel during our visit in 2017 [https://winebyric.com/2017/11/24/understanding-domaine-du-clos-de-tart/] clearly has a certain freshness and articulation that isn’t quite present in the 2012 and 2014. Jacques is so knowledgeable and passionate about his work that one cannot help but feel that Clos de Tart’s loss is Domaine des Lambrays’ immeasurable gain – he even managed to explain how and why biodynamic viticulture works in just five minutes. Thank you once again for honouring us with your presence, Jacques. This dinner will not be forgotten.

2010 Champagne Dom Pérignon. Great open presence of fig and green fruits. Softly contoured, layered with abundant clear citrus that yielded good lift with supple intensity. Superbly proportioned, culminating in a long sweet delicate glow. Highly successful.

2012 Domaine du Clos de Tart Clos de Tart Grand Cru, courtesy of Dr Ngoi. Darker tinge of red. Fairly generous in red fruits and dark cherries on the nose. Medium-full. Still rather tightly-knit on the palate with more than a hint of austere ferrous minerals, though it softened considerably after two hours, becoming more streamlined and feminine with an emerging dash of violets within a frame of sweet structured tannins.

2014 Domaine du Clos de Tart Clos de Tart Grand Cru. Dull red. Quite resolutely shut and austere on the medium-full palate. Distinctly sullen. Took a long time to open up with more inner detail tinged with a hint of spice, developing more soil and earthy tones as it became more subtly vibrant. Fleshed out eventually with bright pebbly tones, well-integrated and rounded with restrained purity.

2016 Domaine du Clos de Tart Clos de Tart Grand Cru, courtesy of Vic. Restrained at first with a stern minerally presence before developing a rounded supple freshness that wasn’t so apparent in the 2012 and 2014. Quite seamlessly proportioned and integrated with a gentle teasing intensity from its abundant layers of red fruits that evoke rose petals, subtly structured with lovely purity. A shy elegant beauty set to blossom with age.

2001 Domaine Leflaive Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru, courtesy of Sir Bob. Dull golden. Gentle tones of mature grapefruit, apricot and citrus on the medium-bodied palate that shone with excellent clarity, imbued with superb subtle intensity and laidback secondary characters.

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