1998 Domaine Dujac Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru "Combottes"

SKU #1329204 92 points John Gilman

 The strong soil signature that is prevalent in so many of the 1998s made this wine really stunning early on, as one was able to revel in the supple beauty of the youthful fruit and still get a very serious dollop of terroir at the same time- a dangerous combination if one has aspirations of allowing this wine to evolve with bottle age! Fortunately, one of my favorite restaurants in all of Burgundy, La Cabotte in Nuits St. Georges, had a goodly supply of half bottles of the ’98 Combottes in their cellar, so I have been able to drink this wine with some frequency over the last few years while dining at this excellent restaurant. The most recent note hails from a half consumed at La Cabotte a year or so ago, and accurately reflects the style of the full bottle we had at the domaine as well during our vertical tasting. The 1998 Combottes is developing beautifully and is a poised and classic example of the vintage. The bouquet offers up a complex and blossoming mélange of sappy plums, cherries, milk chocolate, complex soil tones, violets and a deft framing of vanillin oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very refined on the palate, with lovely focus and grip, modest tannins and a very long, tangy and quite classic finish. Just a beautiful bottle of Combottes that is just about ready for primetime drinking. (Drink between 2010-2030) 92+ points  (8/2014)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated medium red. Aromas of cherry, milk chocolate and spicy, smoky oak. Juicy, subtle and firmly built; not especially fleshy but quite classy. Firmly structured. Finishes long and subtle, with fine tannins. This has turned out very well. (ST)  (3/2001)

Jancis Robinson

 Pale to mid ruby with some rust notes. Very earthy, complex and satisfying. Not desperately intense but beautifully balanced. Very appetising. No 1998 awkwardness. Fresh and lively with great delicacy - not the richest Gevrey but lovely Burgundy tightrope stuff. Bravo! Great length. 18/20 points. Drink 2012-2020. (JR)  (9/2010)

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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.