Archive for the ‘Burgundy’ Category

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Monday, January 12th, 2009

I repeatedly show to this blog’s readers that there are marvellous wine websites elsewhere. Here is a sample of recent articles I wish I would have written.

Next week I’ll post the quarterly contest of the best wine websites. Cellarer Planet shows the latest posts of selected food bloggers — with hourly updates.

Louis Latour, Burgundy

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

With all the ownership changes in Burgundy, Maison Louis Latour remains firmly in the hands of the Latour family.

Louis Latour logoThe domaines, which give it 10 percent of production, also give it some superlative wines, in particular the great Corton-Charlemagne, of which the firm owns 22 acres. Whites are generally regarded as better than the reds here, with new oak barrel fermentation giving considerable richness and complexity.

The reds, traditionally pasteurized before bottling, are more controversial. Some believe the technique ages the wines too fast, while others enjoy the immediate richness and softness. Good reds to follow are the Beaune premier cru Domaine Latour and Chambertin.

Louis Latour
18 rue des Tonneliers – Beaune 21200
Phone: 03 80 24 81 00

2007 vintage would be bad in Europe

Saturday, November 10th, 2007

In a nutshell: buy 2007 wines only from reliable producers.

Obviously a vintage is a concept: it cannot taste bad. The point here is to indicate that vine growers have had more problems this year than previous years. The quality of the wines very much depends on the vine growing — every year but this year even more so. This is the year when the serious, talented winemaker makes a big difference.

Vineyards near Gamlitz, Austria, by HalehRThe Austrian wine marketing board have published their official summary of the vintage so far, calling it ‘the winemaker’s year’. In the words of Jancis Robinson this means that ‘there have been quite a few hurdles for them to overcome – in the vineyard perhaps even more than in the winery’.

In France, the cool summer of 2007 affected everyone and the September weather saved some grapes. Micro-climates came into play and the savvy vigneron had to carefully determine the date of harvest. Rot and mildew was widespread. Keeping the grapes on the vines was a gamble many winemakers did not make.

Côte d’Or, Burgundy

Reports Bill Nanson: ‘The vintage will be as heterogeneous as the approaches and the quality of grapes and sorting’. ‘Grapes from Latricières-Chambertin needed quite some work (just like in 2004)’.
Said Louis-Michel Liger-Belair: ‘we made a hard triage’.
Reports Martine Saunier, California importer of some growers in Burgundy and the Rhône Valley: ‘beginning 25 August, the weather warmed up and the sun finally came out. Temperatures rose to 25°-30° C. The grapes started turning red immediately’.

More reports

I have made complementary overviews:

Wine harvest is over worldwide

Friday, October 26th, 2007

In the Northern Hemisphere most of the last wine grapes were picked by the 20th of October. I already reported on how the harvest started early. So the harvest period is about two months long.

Todd uses a PulseAir system to aerate a two ton fermenter of estate pinot noir, by Anne Amie Vineyards, OregonInside reports on the 2007 harvest season come from:

Go have a look at pictures of the impressive harvesting machine at Château Lacayot (with French captions).

Jeremy Seysses of Domaine Dujac excellently explained how grapes are turned into wine a year ago.

It is a little early to assess the quality of the vintage. Bear in mind that vintage quality is a complex concept. Nevertheless it is possible that the quality will go down for many French wines made in 2007. (I feel this while reading a few French ‘vignerons’ report on their ‘vendanges’.)

We already know that the volumes produced will be low in many places. This is a problem for the revenues of the producers. This is not a question on the quality of the wines. The reports of low volume come from Oregon, California, France (the article is in French), Italy.

Regions which produce as much wine this year as the previous year include Bordeaux.

It is urgent that you consider making your own wine from bought grapes. Or wait for next year!