Pommard and Volnay
Volnay is regarded among Burgundy experts to be the village that
produces the most fragrant and finest wines of the Côte de Beaune.
Their wines are not so rich and full - but a good, full bodied, successful
Pommard is a paragon of elegance and finesse similar to the wines
of Chambolle-Musigny in the Côte de Nuits that sometimes show perhaps
only a bit more complexity.
Michel Lafarge, Volnay
Michel Lafarge owns excellent climates in Volnay. We were able to taste
his 97s from the barrel. It was very pleasant that he took his time during
the degustation. The barrels with the different climates are stored in
the different sections in his impressive ramified cellar. In between lay
layers of bottels wrapped up in a coat of thick dust.
Meursault 1997 barrel sample
Colour light yellow, peach, mineral, good acidity, slightly sweet, light
tones of honey. Approximately mature in 2002-2005.
Bourgogne 1997 barrel sample
Clear tones of pepper, fruity, rich, aromatic.
Lafarge makes one of the best wines from the AOC Bourgogne. The vine grows
just beneath those climates that are counted to the Volnay-appellation
and show the same characteristics: Very elegant bouquet, stressing more
the finesse than the power. The 97 has turned out to be very good again.
Due to the light acidity it will probably be drinkable in two years' time,
but it matures definitely during some more years (Very good price, the
96 costs 42 FF). Consume 1999-2004.
Volnay 1997 barrel sample
Green pepper, full bodied, some truffle, well structured, plenty of tannin.
Becomes a good Volnay. Aproximately mature: 2002-2006.
Volnay 1er Cru 1997 barrel sample
A Cuvée of several small plots from Volnay 1er Cru climates. Fragrant
bouquet. Plums, violets, still green tones. Will become excellent. Lafarge's
most open 1er Cru. Approximately mature 2003-2008.
Volnay 1er Cru Clos-de-Chateaux-de-Ducs 1997 barrel sample
A monopol of Lafarge. A lieux-dics in the 1er Cru Lage Les Village. In
the bouquet elderberry jam. Vanilla, sweetness warm in the finish, very
elegant, very balanced. Approximately mature 2004-2009.
Volnay 1er Cru Clos-de-Chenes 1997 barrel sample
The richest of Lafarges Volnay wines from one of the best climates in
the village. Strawberries and raspberries in the bouquet. Intense, warm,
long finish. Complex wine. One of the best in Volnay. Mature about 2005-2010.
Very smooth bouquet. Richer than the 97, more acidity. Mahaleb, intense
tannins. Needs time. Mature 2002-2006.
Volnay 1er Cru Clos-de-Chenes 1996
Darker, more intense colour than the Village Volnay. Intense bouquet
with some cassia, truffle, green olives and elderberry. Within the taste
some tobacco, good strong tannins, long finish, vanilla. Rich and complex
wine. Mature about 2005-2010. (160 FF)
Domaine Hubert de Montille, Volnay
Another excellent domaine in Volnay with climates in Pommard and Volnay.
There are wines produced you can taste and judge easily, but during the
first year in the bottle they get rather harsh and inaccessible. After
a longer time of maturation they develop and become very full bodied -
fine Volnays and Pommards. Hubert de Montille doesn't like wines that
are too alcoholic, because the alcohol can cover the finesse of the wine.
His wines often have only 12% alcohol whereas similar wines of the same
appellation often have 13%. Nevertheless de Montille's wines often taste
richer, fuller and more intense.
Hubert de Montille let us try the 1997 Volnays and Pommards from the barrels.
Volnay 1er Cru Les Mitans 1997 barrel sample
Red colour, young, cherries and some raspberries in the bouquet. Relatively
much acidity (especially concerning the mostly low acidity 97s), oak.
Volnay 1er Cru Les Champans 1997 barrel sample
Darker in the colour than the Les Mitans. Blackberries, and violets in
the bouquet. Vanilla. Good structure.
Volnay 1er Cru Les Taillepieds 1997 barrel sample
Even of a much darker colour. Spicy, leather, game and woods in the fragrance.
Still clear vanilla tones, too. Very well balanced acidity and tannin
structure. Excellent Volnay.
Pommard 1er Cru Les Pézerolles1997 barrel sample
Colour a bit violet. In the bouquet not so flowery as the Volnays. More
full bodied in the mouth, but less acidity. Vanilla, much tannin, rather
Pommard 1er Cru Les Grands Epenots 1997 barrel sample
Slightly brighter than the Les Pézerolles. Violet. Vanilla tones.
Rather fine - not as intense as the Les Pézerolles, feminine, balanced,
but still rather closed. Elderberry.
Pommard 1er Cru Les Rugiens 1997 barrel sample
Dark violet. Intense spicy bouquet with cranberries and cooked blackberries.
Very good balance and structure. The most intense and complex Pommards
To win an impression how de Montille's wines mature, he opened the
following bottle for us:
Volnay 1er Cru 1990
A 1er Cru Cuvée from several smaller 1er Cru plots from different
climates. Dark colour, oppulent, intense brilliant fragrance with excellent
wafts of game, leather and dark berries. Very complex - in the taste still
a bit closed, plenty of tannin, long finish. Great wine! Approximately
De Montille's wines unfortunately were almost completely sold out.
He only had some 1er Crus from 1992 and 1994 (between 105 and 140 FF per
bottle) and Bourgogne 1995 (45 FF).
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