So having left Bonneau du Martray
we headed south to meet up with Brice and the team at Domaine Leflaive
. We discussed the vintage and then straight into the tasting.
|Brice de La Morandiere
Brice drew some parallels to the 2010s and some elements of 2014 in so far as there was rapid maturity in June and July. As far as harvest goes it was their second earliest start (Friday 28th August) on record at the Domaine. You’d think that the earliest one was 2003, I did, but in fact it was 2011 with 2003 in the bronze medal spot.
Bourgogne Blanc 2015 – Some yellow gold, fresh, generous, not overly lean…nice easy to enjoy, good wine. A dash of spice in there…lots of fruit too, decent acidity giving a nice bit of precision. 16.5 – 17.5 out of 20
Puligny-Montrachet 2015 – A glint of green in the colour, nice sweet attack then a grip of acidity, quite bold. There is a richness and weight to this, a shade heavier than the Bourgogne Blanc. Some lemon sherbet, impressive. 17 – 17.5 out of 20
Meursault 1er Cru Sous le Dos d’Ane 2015 – More gold to the colour, more restrained on the nose. Lovely wine, saline in the mix. Yellow fruits but properly subdued, balanced. Lemon, good spice on the palate, a little prickle of energy. Moreish texture with almost a little tannin. The best Meursault yet from this site and I have loved many of them. 18 out of 20
Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Clavoillon 2015 – Hints of green again a little like the Puligny Villages. This is tasting the youngest of these, a month behind in evolution, a prickle of gas. A few good nuts and greener fruits, nice depth, spicier and serious. 17.5-18 out of 20
Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Folatieres 2015 – Less colour here. Steelier…reminds me of Grand Cru Chablis, very mineral. Good weight of sweeter fruit on the palate. Good wine this, long and moreish. 18-18+ out of 20
Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Combettes 2015 – Limes on the nose and more to show that Folatieres at first, Again good weight and volume, great acidity. Long and Grand Cru like on the palate, some green spice, nice nice wine this. Lovely precision. Rich but in no way clumsy. 18+ out of 20
Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Pucelles 2015 – Pure light colour, behind Combettes in maturity to my mind. Primary and very focused. Very tight and mineral, a little cheesecloth, fruit character is more lean, less generous. More serious, more for the longer term. Lovely acidity, lively but with real balance, fruit is more on the green/white spectrum than yellow/gold. Strict and very proper. 18-18.5 out of 20
Bienvenues-Batard-Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru 2015 – Pure, Islay nose of brine and saline, very very poised and intense. Delicious palate, there is lively acidity but a sweet fruited nose and delightful richness, all in check and perfectly proportioned. A tiny dash of reduction then a log texture finishes, delicious and serious…pretty special. 18.5 out of 20
Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2015 – An immediately broader nose, weightier palate. More sun, more gourmand, more flattering. Delicious palate very rich, broader shoulders. Good spice and to a degree more of the character I expected in 2015. This is easy to “get” and easy to like. 18 out of 20
Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru 2015 – There is, to me, a line from this to Pucelles straight away. Taut, poised. Delicious weight to the palate. There is an understated confidence to it, even a slight smugness. Some brine but a lovely sweetness on the palate. Waxy and very long. My note ends “splendid”. 19 out of 20
|Domaine Leflaive Holdings
My warmer vintage theory – this isn’t so much a theory as a series of observations from a few tastings. I have seen in more recent warm vintages, often the very same vintages that tend to get a better write-up for reds than whites (so 2003, 2005, 2009 and potentially 2015) that actually, by picking early, the great white Domaines can do just as well if not better than in the more classical years. This was born out to a degree in both of these tastings Roulot a good look and Burgundy pairs 2009 & 2010. I can hear the cynics saying… “well you would say that as a merchant about to sell exactly that sort of vintage” but I also happen to think it is true.
Back to Leflaive for a moment and before we headed into Beaune for a very speedy lunch we had a look at the developments in storage they are making and along the way we were shown the two barrels that are talked about in this story
. The two, slightly differently sized, barrels will be raised at Domaine Leflaive. What will happen to the wine is not yet decided.