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Red Burgundy

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CSV
Region Producer Vintage Name Qty Unit Case Size Format Price Note Rating
Red Burgundy Bouchard Pere 2010 Bonnes Mares 1 Case 6 75cl £950
  • Maison Bouchard Père & Fils
    2010
    Bonnes Mares
    Grand Cru Red 750 ml
    Score: 95
    Tasted: Apr 01, 2012
    Drink: 2025+
    Issue: 46
    Don't miss!
    Note: from a .24 ha mix of terres rouges and terres blanches but with a bit more of the former
    Producer note: Philippe Prost, Bouchard's winemaker, noted that 2010 was "an up and down growing season with a difficult flowering that resulted in a very small crop with a very high percentage of shot berries, especially in the Côte de Beaune. We began picking on the 20th of September and picked through the 1st of October. The harvest conditions were very cool so the super clean fruit arrived at the cuverie at much more reduced temperatures than is typical. This allowed for longer and entirely natural cool macerations. The harvest itself though was less stressful than usual for the simple reason that various parcels were ready at different times due to the highly heterogeneous flowering and thus we could methodically organize our harvest regimen. Moreover, thanks to the tiny crop and cool harvest weather we had absolutely no rot pressure so again, we could pick when we chose. By contrast 2009 and 2011 saw everything basically ready at the same time so it was much more difficult to optimize the harvest for each parcel. I did our normal vinification with one exception which is that I opted to use a higher percentage of whole clusters than usual though not for all wines. In fact, particularly in the Côte de Beaune it tended to be a lot or a little but not much in between. We also elected to reduce the percentages of new wood and a rough estimate would be 15 to 30% for the villages wines, 35 to 45% for the minor 1ers, 35 to 55% for the major 1ers and between 55 to 75% for the grands crus. We used one-year old wood for the remainder. As to the wines, they have lots of energy and really speak of their underlying terroirs. They're classic burgundies if you will. As to relative performance, every commune in the Côte de Nuits was excellent though if I had to choose just one, then I would anoint Gevrey as the star. In the Côte de Beaune it wasn't quite so homogenous. The best village in my view was Pommard though Volnay was only just behind. Savigny and Beaune were also both quite good if not exactly at the same level." Proust noted that the reds were bottled in December, 2011 and January, 2012 and most wines were not filtered and none were fined. (Henriot, Inc., www.henriotinc.com, NY, NY; John E. Fells and Sons, www.fells.co.uk, UK).
    Tasting note: Soft wood influence does not materially diminish the lightly spiced and beautifully fresh nose that is composed of red berry fruit, stone hints and earth nuances. The remarkably rich, round and concentrated flavors exude a focused power while coating the palate with impressive reserves of dry extract that also buffer the very firm tannins. This should be excellent in time as there is outstanding intensity yet impeccable balance and length.
     

Tasting Notes
95
Red Burgundy Comte Liger-Belair 2010 La Romanee 1 Bottle 75cl £4,800
  • Domaine du Comte Liger-Belair
    2010
    La Romanée
    Grand Cru Red 750 ml
    Score: 97
    Tasted: Jan 14, 2013
    Drink: 2025+
    Issue: 49
    Producer note: Louis-Michel Liger-Belair told me that 2011 was an "exceptionally precocious vintage that not only started early but ended early. I chose to begin picking on the 3rd of September and brought in super clean fruit though there was some sorting work required for under ripe berries, which cost us around 5%. Quantities were down again and I would estimate that they were off between 15 and 20% relative to a normal vintage. One of the really impressive aspects of this vintage is just how ripe the underlying phenolics are even though the potential alcohols were only slightly above average at between 12 and 13%. It was warm during the harvest and the fruit was obviously warm as well when it arrived at the cuverie. As such the fermentations started relatively rapidly. I elected to push the length of the cuvaisons significantly, which is to say that they normally last about 20 days but in 2011 the average was 25. The malos were varied with some finishing early and some late but the post-malo pHs were pretty much textbook at between 3.5 and 3.6. Overall, 2011 is not a great vintage but I like the wines a lot as they have good aging potential plus they will offer a lot of pleasure young." In other news Liger-Belair told me that he acquired the Nuits 1er monopole of La Grande Vigne (it's actually in Prémeaux) which measures 2.21 ha. He will also have some white next year as a .5 ha portion of La Grande Vigne is planted to chardonnay. As the scores and comments suggest, the now in-bottle '10s have also turned out extremely well and a number of them are really quite stunning, in particular the Reignots. (A Becky Wasserman Selection/Le Serbet, www.leserbet.com, Beaune, France; additional distributors include Veritas Imports, www.veritaswine.com, CA/NV/AZ/NM, Grand Cru Selections, LLC, nedbenedict@gmail.com, NY/NJ, Wines Unlimited, www.winesunlimited.com, New Orleans, LA, Classified Wine & Spirits, LLC, www.classifiedwine.net, Austin, TX, C'est Vin, LLC, 703/243-3559, Arlington, VA, and USA Wine Imports, www.usawineimports.com, NY, NY for "Selection Pas Mal", New York, NY; Justerini & Brooks, www.justerinis.com, UK and Richards Walford & Co., Ltd., www.r-w.co.uk, UK).
    Tasting note: This is discreet and reserved with a gorgeously complex nose that offers up notes of violets, cassis, black berry, clove, sandalwood and anise hints. There is a palpable sense of energy to the brilliantly well-delineated, cool and restrained flavors that possess outstanding mid-palate concentration with focused power and a strong mineral component that culminate in a driving and explosive finish. What is interesting here though is that the power is delivered with no apparent weight and the supporting tannins are wonderfully sophisticated. While there is some of the trademark youthful austerity it seems less pronounced in 2010 than in some other recent vintages. A magnificent and perfectly balanced effort of pure silk that should age accordingly and this is undoubtedly one of the best wines in a great vintage.
     

Tasting Notes
97
Red Burgundy Fourrier 2010 Griotte Chambertin 1 Bottle 75cl £925
  • Tasting note: A very densely fruited and overtly ripe nose offers up a variety of red berry fruit liqueur aromas that include cherry and raspberry as well as hints of earth, underbrush and a subtle note of wet stone. There is excellent intensity to the supple and extremely rich yet focused, balanced and beautifully well-detailed flavors that possess a caressing mouth feel. The structural elements are completely ripe and there is a really lovely underlying tension that runs the length of the wine and this embodies that most attractive of qualities, which is to say power without weight. This is brilliant and should age that way too. I would strongly advise decanting this as well.

Tasting Notes
95
Red Burgundy Liger-Belair, Thibault 2010 Corton 1er Cru Renardes 1 Case 6 75cl £480
  • Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair
    2010
    Corton-Renardes
    Grand Cru Red barrel
    Score: 91-93
    Tasted: Jan 10, 2012
    Drink: 2022+
    Issue: 45
    Producer note: Thibault Liger-Belair, who is a cousin of Louis-Michel Liger-Belair (see above), told me that 2010 "yielded a small crop but at the same time gave us excellent quality. I began picking on the 24th of September and while there was some sorting work required, it was relatively minor. The fruit had excellent phenolic maturity and good acidities with average pHs. Potential alcohols were strong at between 12.8 and 13.8% and there was basically no chaptalization of any consequence. There was a moderately high incidence of shot berries and in general the skins were quite thick. The berries didn't have a lot of juice in them and between those various factors, yields were definitely significantly lower than they were say in 2009. I did a comparatively soft vinification as there were only 3 total punch downs during the primary fermentation. I relied more on pump overs as the cuvaisons were quite long because as I like to joke that my yeasts were lazy. Because of the high proportion of shot berries there was quite a bit of sugar released during the pressing so there was a material amount of fermentation that occurred in barrel. The wines were pretty difficult to taste before the malos as they were quite strict but afterwards they have improved by the month. I really like my 2010s and believe that they are the best wines that I have ever made. They have everything that I look for in fine pinot noir as there is excellent typicity, elegance, freshness and vibrancy." Thibault Liger-Belair is clearly coming into his own as a winemaker and the wines reflect his growing confidence. This is a domaine to watch as the quality seems to only go from strength to strength. In this same vein, the Liger-Belair '09s have turned out extremely well. Readers should be aware that the Liger-Belair cellars are very deep and particularly cold and thus many of the wines are often strongly reduced. (Vineyard Brands, www.vineyardbrands.com, Birmingham, AL; Lay & Wheeler, www.laywheeler.com, UK, O.W. Loeb, www.owloeb.com, UK and Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, UK).
    Tasting note: Reduction. By contrast there is excellent verve to the exceptionally rich and impressively intense large-scaled flavors that possess excellent power on the overtly muscular, precise and driving finish. This is quite firmly structured but there is good buffering extract that should allow this well-balanced effort to age gracefully.
     

Tasting Notes
93
Red Burgundy Mommessin 2010 Clos de Tart 2 Case 6 75cl £2,200
  • Clos de Tart
    2010
    Clos de Tart
    Grand Cru Red 750 ml
    Score: 94
    Tasted: Jan 14, 2013
    Drink: 2025+
    Issue: 49
    Producer note: Sylvain Pitiot, régisseur (resident manager) of Clos de Tart, told me that 2011 is a "very pretty and while not a great vintage, it's certainly very good. We picked extremely late by the standards of a relatively precocious vintage, which is to say on the 25th of September. The crop was exceptionally clean and there was really almost no sorting required to speak of beyond a few bits of debris, insects and the like. The potential alcohol was very good at around 13.5% and at that level there is of course no need for chaptalization. Yields were what I would consider normal here at Clos de Tart at around 28 hl/ha. I used some stems in the vinification though because the definitive blend has not yet been made, I can't say with precision what the final percentage will be. As to the 2011 Clos de Tart, it is a relatively forward vintage for us though it shouldn't have any trouble improving over at least a decade." As usual, the vinification was divided into seven different cuvées that may or may not be included in the final blend but the review below is based on what Pitiot believes will be reasonably representative of the '10 Clos de Tart. Further, some of the cuvées were destemmed completely and some not at all. As Pitiot noted, he believes that the '11 will have some significant amount of whole clusters in it. While the 2011 Clos de Tart is certainly a fine effort by the standards of the vintage, it seems clear that the 2010 vintage is at another level. (Wilson & Daniels, www.wilsondaniels.com, St. Helena, CA; and Corney & Barrow, www.corneyandbarrow.com, UK Clarion Wines, www.clarionwines.co.uk, UK).
    Tasting note: A ripe but cool and highly complex nose of moderately wooded aromas of violets, cassis, black berry and anise hints. The superbly rich and velvety broad-shouldered flavors possess outstanding size, weight and mid-palate concentration that coats the palate with dry extract and enrobes the firm tannic spine to the point where it is more of a background element than usual. There is excellent energy and precision to the dusty, pure and driving finish. This well-balanced effort should require between 15 and 18 years of cellar time to be at its best.
     

Tasting Notes
94
Red Burgundy Mugnier JF 2010 Musigny 1 Bottle 75cl £2,500
  • Tasting note: Here the broad ranging nose is actually similar to that of the Amoureuses but it's both cooler and even more restrained. The penetratingly mineral-driven large-scaled flavors are an exercise in refinement with tremendous depth of material that pushes the very firm tannic spine to the background on the palate staining, linear and stunning intense finish. This magnificent effort is regal and aloof at this point and is conceding little in terms of accessibility yet it's irreproachably well-balanced which should permit this magnificent effort to develop slowly but surely over the next 15 plus years. The 2010 Musigny is yet another in a long line of great vintages of this wine from Mugnier.

Tasting Notes
97
Red Burgundy Rousseau 2010 Clos de Beze 1 Bottle 75cl £3,250
  • Domaine Armand Rousseau Père et Fils
    2010
    Chambertin-Clos de Bèze
    Grand Cru Red 750 ml
    Score: 97
    Tasted: Jan 14, 2013
    Drink: 2025+
    Issue: 49
    Producer note: Eric Rousseau's take on the 2011 vintage was that "we had almost the same metrological conditions as in 2007. It was not quite as hot but otherwise similar, particularly in that the spring was very dry. The summer weather was not great either and it required a lot of work in the vineyards to ensure good aeration to avoid undue problems with rot. We began picking on the 31st of August and there was a fair amount of sorting necessary though not so much that I was worried about how clean my lees would be. Potential alcohols were in the 12 to 13.2% range, which is perfectly acceptable if not truly excellent. Yields however were down considerable and while they were a bit higher than 2010, the total was still off 25 to 30%. I did our normal vinification where I lowered the temperature to between 13 and 16° C (55 and 61° F) and then allowed the musts to climb when and as they wanted. The malos were all over the place with some of them ending early and others terminating much later. As to the wines, there is more underlying material than we had in 2007, and to my taste, the quality is definitely higher as well. I think that the 2011s should age well, not because they are necessarily all that firmly structured so much as that they are very well-balanced." 2011 is a vintage chez Rousseau where the big boys definitely shined and while the lower level wines are more than respectable, they don't necessarily transcend the vintage. That said, the Chambertin, Bèze, Ruchottes, Clos St. Jacques and Clos de la Roche are all very impressive. Regarding the now in-bottle 2010s, they are absolutely stunning and any and all should be on your shopping lists, but in particular, absolutely do not miss either the Chambertin or the Clos de Bèze as they are utterly brilliant. (Frederick Wildman, www.frederickwildman.com, NY, NY; Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, The Wine Society, www.thewinesociety.com, House of Townend, www.houseoftownend.com, Tanners Wine, www.tanners-wines.co.uk, Laytons, www.laytons.co.uk, O.W. Loeb, www.owloeb.com, The Rare & Fine Wine Company Limited, www.therareandfinewinecompany.com, and Justerini & Brooks, www.justerini.com, all UK).
    Tasting note: Very deeply colored, indeed this is the mostly deeply tinted of the Rousseau '10s. A gentle touch of wood offsets the highly complex and ultra-fresh nose that interweaves a superb range of floral, spice and distinctly ripe fruit elements. The seductively textured, detailed, pure and vibrant broad-shouldered flavors display a subtle minerality before terminating in an explosive, powerful and tautly muscled finish that delivers massive length. This is a relatively powerful Rousseau Bèze yet it remains quite refined as the underlying tannins are almost inexplicably fine-grained and like the Clos St. Jacques, it should age effortlessly for years. In sum, this is simply phenomenal.
     

Tasting Notes
97
Red Burgundy Rousseau 2010 Clos Saint Jacques 1 Case 6 75cl £6,250
  • Tasting note: Discreet but not invisible wood spice adds breadth to the otherwise perfumed, elegant and ultra-pure stone-infused red berry fruit nose that is also quite fresh within the context of the vintage. The detailed and strikingly intense medium-bodied flavors exude dry extract that effectively pushes the firm tannic spine to the background on the palate staining and massively long finish. This powerful effort is a potentially a great Clos St. Jacques that rivals its 2005 counterpart at the same stage of its development.

Tasting Notes
94
CSV