TN Meursault @ Noize

Discussion in 'UK Wine Forum' started by Will Taylor, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. A dinner at Noize last night with a few forumites exploring some of the best that Meursault has to offer. I think all were last bottles from parcels purchased when prices were within reach and so unlikely to be repeated unfortunately.

    NV Jacques Selosse Champagne Initial (Disg. 2011) – This has previously struck me a as a fizz that would reward a bit of cellaring so was good to get to put that theory to the test with this 04,05,06 base Initial. Slightly more oxidative than I would have expected but still the vinously structured chardonnay core I remember with a bit of tertiary nuance and energetic mousse. Really rather good and the extra time in bottle has paid dividends though possibly not much more than this. ****

    2008 Arnaud Ente Meursault – Very Ente on the nose which for me is always a wonderful balance of reduction and richness, beautiful energy on the palate, I like the oak which is very well handled and this will benefit from more time I think and I’d be happy to leave it as 4 out of 6 so far have been pristine. ****
    2006 Domaine Roulot Meursault Les Narvaux – The colour is a bit worrying being a few shades darker than the 08 and 96 alongside but it feels like a natural progression rather than premature. An enticing nose and rich apply palate would have resulted in a very good evenings drinking had it been opened on its own at home but in the company it is very much overshadowed. **1/2
    1996 Coche-Dury Meursault – Wow how is this still so fresh, the nose could be a bit more giving, though it does open up over time, this however is all about the energy and lift on the palate. Deeply complex while being effortlessly balanced, so much going on you have to keep going back, starting to get now why people lament the loss of well aged white burgundy. *****

    2008 Arnau Ente Meursault La Seve du Clos – Again that signature Ente nose but this definitely draws you in a bit more and one can see why this parcel of old vines is treated as a separate cuvee, there is an added concentration over the straight village that makes this a big step up in quality. As it warms though it does possibly, if being uber critical, become a bit one dimensional and starts to feel a bit more ‘made’ next to the Coche but that is to take nothing away from this exceptional village Meursault. *****
    2007 Coche-Dury Meursault 1er Cru Caillerets – The nose again seems a little reticent next to the impressive richness of the Seve but the palate has that signature energy and midpalte lift that extends the wine in mouth, it never loses this as it warms unlike the Ente and is as enjoyable at the end of the dinner as when first poured. This is all about the balanced energetic structure that I find hard to express in words suffice to say it’s the benchmark against which all other white burg is compared for me. ******

    2000 Denis Mugneret Pere et Fils Echezeaux – Not the most attractive 2000 I’ve had but is a decent red and blue fruited distraction from the whites and flawed reds. The tannins are surprisingly firm for a 2000 which suggest that it may benefit from a bit more time in bottle, good to try a producer I had not come across before. ***
    1969 Domaine Clair-Dau Chambertin-Clos de Beze – Totally oxidised, failed cork NR
    1979 Jean-Claude Boisset Musigny – Touch of cork taint on the nose but the palate doesn’t seem as affected but not as it should be and not compared to previous bottles. NR

    2005 Domaine Gourt de Mautens (Jerome Bressy) Rasteau – Served blind with cheese I thought mourvedre as it had a nice rustic grip and warm spiced palate but no its turbo charged Grenache, bit of a surprise for the palate after the graceful burgundies, impressive rather than pleasurable, one glass is probably enough.**1/2

    2002 J.J Prum Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Eiswein – Not had a proper Mosel Eiswein before and this doesn’t disappoint. The fruit concentration is bewildering and kaleidoscopic almost too much to take in and married with the piercing acidity we could have polished off a Magnum. *****

    So Coche on this showing for me is still the benchmark, though there was some discussion over dinner that with the son taking over the style that marked out the 96 and 07 here may be changing and not for the better. Also on the flip side Ente has apparently been going from strength to strength with younger wines (from 2011) being steps ahead of the 08’s tasted here, if this is the case, not taken mine out of storage yet, then Ente may will be the new king of Meursault. It was a shame the older reds didn’t show well but that is the risk when picking up odd bottles at auction. Noize is an excellent venue for more relaxed informal dinners of this nature and the service from Mathieu is exemplary, think this will be my go to for wine dinners going forward. A privilege to try these wines and a dinner that will live long in the memory.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018
  2. A lovely selection. I’ve noticed that french stared restaurants are starting to price Ente at or above Coche at similar appellation levels, though obviously the senior Coche wines are pricier not having Ente equivalents.
  3. Tom Cannavan

    Tom Cannavan Administrator

    Lovely - mouth-watering :)
  4. Thanks to Will for organising a superb evening.

    I have to agree regarding Matthieu’s incredibly friendly approach to such events.

    The ageing potential of the cream of such growers is incredible, the 1996 Coche was my WOTN on that basis. Not sure the 2008 Ente villages would have such powers, yet still youthful in its own right.

    Prices of these wines won’t be coming down. A great shame 2 of the reds failed, but that’s the lottery of such bottles.
    Will Taylor likes this.
  5. Great notes on a lovely set of white wines. Impressive to capture such a range of experiences: I find it challenging with white Burg. Bad luck on the reds!
    Will Taylor likes this.
  6. Thanks for writing this up, great line up.

    Coche smashes it again.

    I have to say I feel a bit sorry for Raphael Coche though..... so many domaines where the new generation have the opportunity to change things in a positive way and he inherits something legendary - in the face of the challenges of global warming too.
    Raymond Tilney and Nigel PMartin like this.
  7. Looks fantastic. Great notes Will. Coche triumps again. Shame that most mortals will never get to taste one. Ho hum.
  8. The thing about Coche-Dury whites at least under the old regime is not so much that they are thrilling as that(when all is well as they remarkably often are) they are perfect, an aristocratically intellectual rather than sensual pleasure very much in the way of great claret rather than great red burgundy.
    The reds, on the whole not from the most auspicious vineyards, are at least as exquisite, it is just that they have rather more competition!
  9. Lovely reading Will, thanks for writing this up.

    So sorry to hear that the Clair-Dau was knackered - should have been the highlight of the evening ...
  10. They are pretty thrilling full stop.

    I think if someone offered me the choice of only Coche Aligote in place of all other white burgundy i wouldn't hesitate.
  11. I'm minded of RZ's magical J and B/Clair Dau Chambertin '47 - up there!
    Richard Zambuni likes this.
  12. Really? in spite of my great admiration for Coche I think it's quite far from the best Aligoté. Not in the same class at all as the Ente, for starters!
    Jasper Morris likes this.
  13. And far from the d’auvenay.
  14. Well I don't exactly have exhaustive experience (!) but i have tried every vintage '08-14 and done two Aligote taste offs - including Ente - and the Coche smashed all comers!

    So, for me, yeah!

    Never tried D'Auvenay feel free to open one and prove me wrong Thomas :)
  15. Each to their own, of course. Alex, and these things are always subject to one's mental image of a wine. For several years I got an annual case of the Coche from La Reserve, it was inexpensive and they seemed to have more than they could sell. I always liked it but always felt it a little heavy on its feet, and in the same way I have never found the Bourgogne(Blanc, the red is quite another matter) to be wildly better than other good ones. It is when we get to the village Meursaults that things really start to happen, and to my mind they are indeed better than most people's grand crus.
    I don't think D'Auvenay really counts!
    Alex Jagger likes this.
  16. Will thanks for organising a great evening. I don't have much to add to your excellent notes.

    I think all the whites performed as one would hope for: a very rare occurrence these days. The Coche 1996 was better than my most recent two encounters, and fresher than Perrieres 1996 tasted in the last year, so it was well above expectations. A great village wine still at its peak (from this bottle). The Caillerets was my bottle, and the last of nine bottles I bought some time ago. All the bottles drunk well and it was nice to finish the last bottle with the wine showing so well. But I have seen premox in Genevrieres and Perrieres 2007, including Genevrieres I bought from the same source as the Caillerets, and heard about bad premox in CC and Rougeots 2007, so caveat emptor for anyone searching out these wines today.

    Also based on experience and hearing from people who know the wines and estate a lot better than I am being very cautious with Coche-Dury from 2013 onwards ... I am going to Paris next month to a restaurant that will probably have the Perrieres 2013 listed at a "good" price, but I don't think I will be tempted at all. On the other hand if they still have the 2012 listed as last year ...

    And as excellent as the Ente wines were, I think more recent vintages show even more promise (especially 2011 for now and 2014 for the future).
    Will Taylor and Thom Blach like this.
  17. Paul, to what extent and disregarding extremes, do you think provenance is an issue that relates much to premox? my impression is that it is so hardly at all and that the very best cellarage offers no protection.
    Obviously I am not talking about old bottles that are more likely to be oxed than poxed.
  18. I agree, Tom. I know you think that because my cellar is in Yorkshire, it is a throwback to the last Ice Age, but it is in fact a classic Georgian Rectory cellar, with virtually perfect temperature and humidity. Nevertheless, with depressing regularity I open pristine bottles of white burgs (and much less often white bordeaux), all purchased en primeur and kept here since then, with immaculate capsules, corks and levels. Many bottles have corks that are tight as a drum, and others show moisture only a small way up the cork. Yet my rate of attrition through premox in wines after 1995 and before 2010 is running at 50% or so, and some 2010 wines are showing signs of following suit.

    In my experience, the incidence of premox in vintages between 1996 and 2009 varies with the producer -- my worst offenders have been Fevre (over 70%), Marc Morey, Bonneau du Martray, Chateau de la Maltroie and Fontaine-Gagnard. Also Girardin, more recently. The better performers include Rollin, Marc Colin, PYCM, Jadot (yes, I know others take a different view), Bouchard, and Paul Pernot.

    Most striking of all is the fact that bottles from the 1995 vintage and earlier, provided they are in good condition, have exhibited very little oxidisation, as distinct from gentle ageing. Even 1982 village wines are still quite good:).

    Like many others, I suspect, I now buy quality white burgs almost entirely from the Cote Chalonnaise, and drink them before they are seven years old. Some of these are delicious, even though they can never resemble aged white burgs from the famous villages further north. I don't understand how the Cote de Beaune producers are still able to charge such high prices for white burgs which continue to be at risk of premox.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018
    Kevin Courtney and Alex Jagger like this.
  19. I’ll never forget Tom describing the d’auvenay as “absolutely disgraceful” with a huge smile on his face as he leaned in for a refill...! :p
    Alex Jagger and Simon Grant like this.
  20. Don Cornwell recently organised his annual white burgundy vintage check. This year was 2010. His group (all experienced tasters) tried 80 different wines from the good and great of Chablis and the côte de Beaune. The group consensus was that 6% of those (5 bottles) were either oxidised or advanced. Relating this to price, that would mean that good bottles are effectively 6% more expensive than the sticker price. It matches my own experience of the 2010-11 vintages.

    My personal theory is that, outside of controlled experiments like those of Don, there’s a bunch of cognitive biases that lead us to overestimate the true share of oxidised burgs​
  21. I’m running at between 5 and 16% on yearly consumption. A range of producers and ‘at risk’ vintages. 2018 up as a result of taking a punt on some risky bin ends.

    2018 9/56
    2017 4/73
    2016 4/57
    2015 4/76

    Vintages consumer mainly 2011 and older. Duds spread across a range of vintages 11 and older.
  22. Well, Thomas, I simply went back over my notes on CT over the last 8 years. Believe me, the results were as depressing as I wrote above.The incidence in Fevre and Fontaine-Gagnard wines, in particular, was spread over several vintages and crus.

    I'm not a regular follower of Don Cornwell, but I did read the results of his 2013 tastings of the white burgs of 2005, which I assume were similarly comprehensive of that vintage as was the more recent one on the 2010 vintage to which you refer. His broad conclusions then were that the 2005 Coche-Dury, Leflaive, Pernot & Colin-Morey wines were fine, but many others were not. The Bouchard Montrachet was fine, but other Bouchard wines, and the Jadot wines, were not. Overall, well over 25% of the wines tasted were premoxed or "advanced", and that was only eight years after the vintage.

    (You can find the Cornwell reports at 2005 Vintage Assessment and Premox Check Dinner No. 1-Feb 5, 2013 at Spago Beverly Hills - Wine Berserkers - international wine social media, online community, and forums
    2005 White Burgundy Vintage Assessment and Oxidation Check Dinner No 2 @ Valentino February 20, 2013 - Wine Berserkers - international wine social media, online community, and forums
    and 2005 Vintage Assessment and Oxidation Check Dinner No. 3 @ Melisse February 27, 2013 - Wine Berserkers - international wine social media, online community, and forums, if you would like to check the accuracy of my summary.)

    I find support for my own conclusions in those reports. Certainly there is no "cognitive bias" in my tasting notes:):p!
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018
    Thom Blach likes this.
  23. I have obviously been very lucky on this whole premox issue.

    From my limited experience , it’s a grower thing, Leflaive being the main Culprit.

    I probably drink 10 bottles of Meursault for every bottle of Puligny, have drunk she’d loads of Fichet, Javillier from 2005
    To date and can only think of the odd example. Never had it with Ente in probably 50 bottles from 2009. Indeed only one corked bottle of the latter, annoying a Seve du Clos.

    A running rate of 50 per cent is beyond scandalous as much vexing.

    N.b I don’t cellar my own wines
  24. Ever the contrarian!
  25. Thomas, the thing about Don Cornwell's dinners is that they focus not quite but almost exclusively on the top wines and for most of us that is not how we drink our white burgundy.
    I know what you mean about cognitive bias, but the fact remains that Mark's experience reflects mine and that of many others.
    Mark, Jadot appears to have been problematic only after 1999. I wouldn't even think of buying one now which is a shame as they have been an underrated source of some of the very greatest whites and I envy your luck so far. Those of us who don't drink white burgundies all that regularly however will have only our own necessarily random experiences on which to draw, which explains many different perceptions of the problem. The other explanation, more common than is often addressed, is that some like them when they are oxidised considering them a correct manifestation. I have witnessed this often and I am certainly not saying that it is not a matter of opinion.
    Simon Grant and Mark Crann like this.

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