De Villaine Bourgogne Rouge “Les Clous” 2017
OK, I’ll admit it – I send out a lot of advertisements that sound like – “This is almost that, at HALF THE PRICE!!!” This being $4 Chilean Pinot Noir, that being DRC.
Hopefully I’m not that bad. And if you can bear with me. I think I’m onto something special with Aubert de Villaine’s Burgundy project in Bouzeron. Let me switch to a professional review to make the case in point. Here is Robert Parker, commenting on the director of Domaine Romanee Conti, Aubert de Villaine’s Bouzeron project:
“While Aubert de Villaine is synonymous with Domaine de la Romanee-Conti, there is no question that at least one ventricle of his heart is devoted to his personal estate in Bouzeron that he bought with his wife Pamela in the 1970s.
“I think it is partly responsible for Aubert remaining such a down-to-earth personality, when others might have succumbed to self-aggrandizement occupying such a position. As you might expect, these are well-crafted wines that are often understated and nuanced, occasionally utterly beguiling.”
So, to go back to the top… actually, these wines are NOT like DRC. But they are still magical. All the ingredients are here, and the craftsman at the helm is a master.
Here is the 2016 vintage – a tough fought year in the begining because of frost and hail, but then a beautiful and balanced year thereafter, equal on my palate to 2008:
The Aligote smells and tastes like a top-notch Chardonnay from the south of Burgundy. Which, since I am not generally a fan of Aligote, says more than it seems.
The Blanc Les Clous Aime is elegant, lean and fantastically long. Some of you remember when I used to sell Maison Leroy ’97 Bourgogne Blanc for $32 a bottle. This reminds me of that (and I just finished my last bottle).
The Rouge Les Clous is the young red vines of the estate, now 25 years old (young for them, but not to the rest of the wine world). It is fresh, dark-cherry-fruited and vibrant, with soft tension running throughout the palate.
The Rouge La Digoine is a joyful wine – floral and vibrant, with tons of Pinot’s (not oak) baking spice minerality on the body and finish. Just brings a smile to my mouth.
Here is probably the world’s greatest Pinot Noir maker, offering up wines from his home’s garden vineyard.