(2018) I was surprised in some ways to see that there are around 80 tasting notes for Bouchard wines in my database, because as an important Burgundy producer and négociant they do stay slightly under the radar compared to the likes of Jadot and Louis Latour. I was also surprised to see that I hadn't tasted the Côte de Beaune-Villages since the 2000 vintage, as it is a lovely minor Burgundy (yes, even at £20 a bottle that's minor for Burgundy). With a bright cherry perfume backed up by some deeper, sweet earth and briar, but really it is all about the fruit. In the mouth, truly vinous with cherry and grape fruitiness, quite a substantial mouthfeel, ripe but relatively chunky tannins and good cleansing acidity.
(2018) Always delivering a reliably solid glass of wine, Maison Louis Latour's 2015 Bourgogne opens with spice, a hint of truffly damp earth and nicely pert red cherry and raspberry fruit. In the mouth there's a deal of backbone here, a nice endive-like bittersweetness to the tannin and acid axis, but the layering of fresh, open red fruits and hints of mocha add up to a pleasing picture. £14.49 as part of a mixed six at Majestic is a more attractive price - and Bon Couer Wines has half bottles at £7.99.
(2017) This is a négociant wine from Louis Latour, where growers on long-term contracts supply the Pinot Noir grapes and Latour makes the wine. From 30-year-old vines and unoaked, it has a haunting, expressive fragrance, briar and stalkiness, mushroom and then also clear cherry and red berry fruit. A touch of pepper and herbs adds more interest. Very fresh on the palate, there's a lovely juiciness to this wine, more of that pert red fruit and nicely precise tannins and acids to finish. It's a lovely village Burgundy in a restrained but fruit-forward style. Watch the video for more information.
(2017) From an estate that farms its vineyards organically, and governed by phases of the moon, this is from Fixin, an appellation north of Gevrey-Chambertin, and is firm, sappy, stalky and a touch green, but all that is charming and gives a certain precision to the nose and palate. Again that stemminess on the palate, a brisk, firm tannin and acid structure but there's a touch of smoothing oak and plenty of cherry-fresh fruit to give this charm as well as seriousness.
(2016) I just love the unforced, natural concentration of this Pinot Noir from vineyards neighbouring Pommard. It's the epitome of an iron fist in a cashmere glove, as gentle bracken and cherry flavours flatter, before a stripe of intense concentration, liquorice and endive is revealed. It's core has concentrated acidity and tannins, whilst those crisp red fruit flavours and sappy, young twig freshness is energising. The opposite of blockbuster, but hugely pure and decisive, it should cellar five years+.
(2016) Maranges is one of the less familar names of southern Burgundy, its appellations status granted only in 1988. This is a really nice, understated and fairly lean style of Pinot Noir, but not without its subtle floral charms aromatically, and with excellent clarity on the palate, if a little lack of fruit depth.
(2016) Lovely sweet fruited nose, with very fine and solid cherry and red liquorice aromas, a soft sheen of smoke and gentle earthiness. The palate has good fruit, a nice serious bit of grip here, but there is a freshness and a gentle and attractive red fruit lightness too, giving this good length.
(2016) Only sold from the cellars in Chablis, though a little does go to the USA. From 104 year old vines, a vineyard planted by Daniel's grandfather. Very pale, translucent colour. Fascinating, medicinal stuff with clove and spice and high violet and rose floral notes. The palate has a delicious umami freshness and savoury character as well as really fresh raspberry and cherry fruit and acidity. Superb stuff.
(2015) Much lighter and more delicate and open than the 2013 Bourgogne tasted alongside, a hint of briar and leafy bracken, and pretty cherry fruit. Light and savoury on the palate, there is a nicely roughening bit of tannin structure, and good grippy rusticity, giving this savoury and authentic appeal.
(2012) The 1er Cru Sur Gamay has a favoured southerly and easterly exposure, and this comes from 40-year-old vineyards at between 300 and 350 metres. With only 12.5% alcohol, this is crunchy and fresh, with a herbal edge to the apple fruit that gives it a green-hued, vibrant character. On the palate it rounds out, with a nutty character of English apples underpinning lemony fruit. Flirting with the austere, but with wonderful crispness and clarity too. Delightful.
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