2015 Domaine Bruno Clair Chambertin-Clos de Bèze Grand Cru (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1301031 97 points Decanter

 Planted in part with 105 year old vines. A dense nose of cherries and a hint of black fruits, though brooding and inexpressive now. A dense attack which has power as well as drive and finesse. Seamless tannins, and an urgent but not aggressive acidity. Long finish, with superb ageing potential.Drinking Window 2020 - 2040. (SB)  (2/2017)

96 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 (two-thirds of the .98 ha parcel of vines was planted in 1912 and the remainder in 1973). This too is cool, elegant, spicy and even more complex with its range of airy red berries, underbrush, earth, sandalwood and anise nuances. There is excellent richness, power and mid-palate density to the big-bodied but not massive flavors that exhibit a subtle minerality on the mouth coating and hugely long finish. This is certainly an imposing wine yet the mouthfeel is one of class and grace and interestingly for such a young Bèze, there is virtually no austerity. Wow. 2035+  (1/2018)

93-96 points Vinous

 (these vines were picked on September 9): Healthy medium red. Pungently floral aromas and flavors of raspberry, crushed stone, underbrush and rose petal. Delivers a superb combination of thickness and lift, with its captivating sweetness perfectly buffered by underlying smoky mineral tension. Conveys an almost chocolatey impression but the alcohol here is a moderate 12.9%. Most impressive today on the very long, rising finish, where the ripe tannins are perfectly integrated.  (1/2017)

92-94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2015 Chambertin Clos-de-Beze Grand Cru has another very well-defined bouquet with tightly wound red berry fruit, crushed rose petals and subtle sous-bois aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, quite understated in style after the Clos Saint-Jacques with slightly savory red fruit towards the grainy-textured finish. The persistence is impressive, although I cannot help feeling that the Clos Saint-Jacques has the sophistication, the breeding, the je ne sais quoi. Bruno Clair already has an impressive array of holdings in the Côtes de Nuits, from which he has been furnishing wine lovers with beautifully made, quite classically-styled wines for many years. Next year he will add another quite significant parcel of Bonnes-Mares from the cessation of a fermage with Domaine Fougeray de Beauclair, who own the monopole of vines on the Morey-Saint-Denis side of the border. That will surely make Bruno one of the most significant producers of this grand cru. I tasted through the 2015s with winemaker Philippe Brun and a young student who was studying oeno-tourism, assigned 2-weeks by her college at the domaine (I can think of worse work placements myself). "We had some millerandage during the growing season," Philippe told me. "We picked from 6 September and then over 10 days until 20 September. We picked the whites within two days."  (12/2016)

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.


- The province of eastern France, famous for its red wines produced from Pinot Noir and its whites produced from Chardonnay. (Small of amounts of Gamay and Aligoté are still grown, although these have to be labeled differently.) The most famous part of the region is known as the Côte d'Or (the Golden Slope). It is divided into the Côte de Beaune, south of the town of Beaune (famous principally for its whites), and the Côte de Nuits, North of Beaune (home of the most famous reds). In addition, the Côte Chalonnaise and the Mâconnais are important wine growing regions, although historically a clear level (or more) below the Côte d'Or. Also include by some are the regions of Chablis and Auxerrois, farther north.
Specific Appellation:

Gevrey Chambertin

- For many wine aficionados, Gevrey Chambertin is the northernmost end of the true Côte d'Or. The largest of all of the communes, it has 9 Grands Crus (Chambertin, Chambertin Clos de Bèze, Chapelle Chambertin, Charmes Chambertin, Griotte Chambertin, Latricieres Chambertin, Mazy Chambertin, Mazoyeres Chambertin and Ruchottes Chambertin). The best Premier Cru wines come form the vineyards nestled along a hill to the west of the village. The Grands Crus are planted in compacted limestone, while the soils in the rest of the village vary as to their clay content. If we are to characterize broadly, the wines are powerful, muscular and need time in the bottle to develop.