The 2010 Burgundies in bottle are surpassing what they showed in barrel last fall! (At least the ones that are in bottle so far.) All of the rave critical reviews we’ve been seeing (Burghound, Wine Advocate, Tanzer) are from barrel tastings last October & November – that’s also when I tasted over 400 examples of the miraculously good 2010 vintage.
Now that some are in bottle, I am happy to report that they may have gotten even better along the way. This week we held our annual portfolio tastings for all of the trade buyers in Washington & Oregon, and the first round of in-bottle samples of the 2010s arrived about 2 weeks ago.
Tasting through some 80 different wines over the last two days, these things became abundantly clear – there is a crystalline purity to the fruit, the flavors are concentrated and intense, and the wines are uncommonly refreshing. They just delight the palate and compel you to take another sip.
As long as I’ve been following Burgundy, I’ve never seen a vintage like this – it is truly unique. Super low yields (down 30-50+%), a cold summer, a wet fall, a preponderance of millerandage grapes (tiny “shot berries” that never fully formed) – all conspired to create some of the most classically great Burgundies we may ever see.
Harvest in Burgundy, 2010 Photo Andrea Johnson
Already in bottle are the 2010s from Domaine Pavelot, Marc Roy, Hubert-Verdereau, Violot-Guillemard, Domaine de Nugues, Domaine Ninot, and some of the Benjamin Leroux line-up, as well as the whites from Buisson-Charles and part of the Domaine Thibert stable. All of the rest of our producers are bottling their ‘10s now and over the next couple of months – so we’ll be seeing everything arrive on these shores by October for the most part.
Early faves from my tastings this week – the Pavelot Narbantons & Dominodes, the Marc Roy Marsannay Blanc & Gevrey Clos Prieur, the Hubert-Verdereau Bourgogne Rouge & Volnay Robardelles, The Violot Guillemard Clos des Mouches & Pommard Rugiens (holy sh*t!), the Fleurie from Nugues, NInot’s Mercurey VV, and the Leroux Bourgogne Rouge and Savigny-lès-Beaune. Oh my…
On the white side – the ‘10s are simply the best wines they’ve ever made at Buisson-Charles, and that’s saying something. Ditto for Domaine Thibert. A veritable cornucopia of delights indeed.
I also had the opportunity to open a number of ‘08s and ‘09s at our trade tastings this week. I found the ‘09s to be exactly where I expected – rich, fruity, juicy, succulent, and flat-out wines of pleasure. The surprise was the development of the ‘08s – many of which have now evolved to start showing some lovely secondary aromas and have taken on weight while integrating the acidity nicely. Special knockouts were the ’08 Echezeaux from Jean-Marc Millot, the ’09 Volnay VS from Michel Lafarge, and the ’09 Millot Echezaux – full-on yum!
Harvest lunch 2010 with Huber-Verdereau Photo - Andrea Johnson
While qualitatively we have an abundance of riches, don’t forget that the tiny Burgundy crop in 2010 left us with very little wine to go around. Quantities are miniscule in many cases. Keep your eyes glued on your email for our upcoming pre-arrival offers, and act quickly if there are any wines you want to secure, because they simply will not be around for more than a few minutes in most cases.
The best news is the pricing. We have finally received final 2010 prices from our producers, and the vast majority are flat from last year, with a number of them actually going down a bit, and a few up just slightly. The relative strength of the dollar is also working in our favor, so even with the smaller volume available we will not be seeing significantly higher prices for the 2010s Hallelujah!
I’m looking forward to seeing you here in Carlton for our pre-Memorial Day weekend special tasting of Vintage Grower Champagnes and the great Freddy Mugnier too. This one will clearly rock…