Extra-celestial reds from Côte de Nuits hero Guillaume of Jean Tardy
There’s been a fair bit of excitement surrounding CellarHand’s suite of 2018 whites from Burgundy. That’s understandable because they’re lovely. But let’s rewind and change tack a second, to look at some stellar 2017 reds.
It would be an exaggeration to call it plain sailing, but Guillaume Tardy found the harvest of ‘17 pretty easy to handle following a far trickier ’16. Aside from an April frost scare, things progressed smoothly – so much so that Guillaume found himself dropping fruit across all sites, and still ending up with healthy yields between 40 and 45 hl/ha.
Always one to pick earlier and fresher than his peers, he pulled the trigger on 7th September. The fruit he brought in was beautifully ripe and clean. “The style of the wines is really one of pleasure rather than one for long aging,” he told Allen Meadows of Burghound.
So if pleasure’s something you enjoy, then why wait?
50% Pinot Noir and 50% Gamay from Flagey-Echézeaux, the first vineyard Jean bought in 1982. Plush, silky, pleasurable purple fruit with genuine tannin structure.
The 2017 Fixin La Place has a pretty bouquet of blueberry and black cherry aromas, quite floral in style, with commendable purity. The medium-bodied palate offers sappy black fruit, a slightly chalky texture and a brisk, nicely focused finish that is just very “Fixin” in terms of that tail of blue fruit.88-90 points. Neal Martin, Vinous Media January 2019
One third 80-year-old vines, two thirds 45 year old. Rich full purple. There is a fractional reduction on the nose, too much density of fruit here to be floral, in the dark raspberry register, with excellent balancing acidity and a richness of texture too. Persistent finish. Tasted: November 2018.89-90 points. Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
Dense core of purple. This is heady yet still restrained, and very typical of Vosne on the nose, clean, pure, fresh and intense. Just on the red side, with cherry/raspberry notes, plenty of energy, rather impressive. Tasted: November 2018.90-91 points. Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
80-year-old vines. Deep central core of purple and an engaging deep nose, some Nuits plums, some Vosne headiness, this vineyard sits clearly on the border between the two. Excellent weight sitting at the back of the palate, follows though very well, the tannins are indeed silky enough, and the oak regime works well too. Tasted: November 2018.90-92 points. Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
The 2017 Gevrey-Chambertin Champs Perrières Vieilles Vignes comes from 65-year-old vines. It has one of the best aromatics from the domaine this year, featuring billowing, seductive black cherry, fig and raspberry confit aromas. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, good balance and a keen thread of acidity that drives through the concentrated black fruit on the finish. Maybe one for the long haul?90-92 points. Neal Martin, Vinous Media January 2019
Medium deep purple, some of the village wines were denser in colour. Red plum fruit on the nose. Quite fresh on the palate with a little firmness behind, a middle weight Nuits but the persistence at the finish does indeed show 1er Cru quality. Tasted: November 2018.90-93 points. Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
80-year-old vines sharecropped in Les Treux, a site which can make an Echézeaux for the long term. Rich full deep purple with a sumptuous nose, not the lacy style of Echézeaux, but this does have an exceptional density. It does not want to show its detail yet but it comes with a dark red fruit style, some suggestion of rich flowers, then a little blacker fruit behind, certainly some tannins too, a wine which is not at all advanced in its barrel maturation. Tasted: November 2018.92-96 points. Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy