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Burgundy 2009 en primeur – top wines – Côte Chalonnaise & Mâconnais

The best advice I can give to any buyer of Burgundy this vintage is 'first choose your wine merchant' (writes Margaret Rand). Some merchants have sourced wines brilliantly and chosen with great perspicacity (i.e. I like their wines). Others have more mixed offerings. Of those I have tasted so far, Goedhuis, Berry Bros & Rudd and, from the third day’s tastings, Flint are good hunting grounds. Bordeaux Index was also good but had no Mâconnais or Côte Chalonnaise. Flint are new arrivals and have a mixture of established names and new growers of great verve and talent. They say that they favour classic balance in Burgundy: acidity and minerality rather than opulence and oak. That’s my preference too. The very creamy, cushiony whites that some producers have made this year (it’s mostly about picking dates) are not, to my mind, the point of BurgundyCôte Chalonnaise & Mâconnais. There are some good reds at Corney & Barrow and Lay & Wheeler. Good but seldom compelling: the majority are pretty, charming, seductive, but not great. Some are quite lightweight: it was a large vintage, as Bruno Pepin of Louis Latour pointed out. Some growers, said Etienne Grivot of Domaine Jean Grivot, ‘confused over-maturity with density': the result could be wines with 14%-plus alcohol. Not chez Grivot, however: '‘I want precision, minerality, feminity and about 13% alcohol'.


Written by Decanter

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