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Average critic rating : 91.0 points
The 2012 Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru comes from a 0.66-hectare parcel in Mazoyeres and is raised 40% new oak and includes 70% whole cluster fruit. It has an attractive, vibrant nose cut from the same cloth as the Echezeaux with dark berry fruits intermingling with cola and minerals. The palate is cohesive and silky smooth on the entry – it just glides across the mouth. Perhaps it would benefit from a little more reserve and structure towards the finish, but as it stands, this should turn out to be a sensual, more approachable Charmes-Chambertin.||Darkness had descended upon Burgundy by the time I set off from Domaine de la Pousse d’Or in Volnay up to the small village of Chevanne up in the Hautes Cotes hills. Having never visited David Duband’s winery, I was worried about losing my directions, but having enjoyed his wines since I first encountered them in London a decade ago, I was eager to reacquaint myself with them. David’s father worked for the Cave-Cooperative des Hautes-Cotes. It was here that a connection was made with a Parisian lawyer Francois Feuillet who had bought a holding in Aux Thorey, but insisted upon his wine being made at a domaine, not the co-op. At that time, David was in the middle of military service, but promptly left and made his debut 1991. Feuillet went on to acquire the holdings of feted Domaine Truchot-Martin in Morey-Saint-Denis and so nowadays the enlarged portfolio is done on an equal metayage basis, David making the wine and then dividing the production that can be sold under his own name, or that of Feuillet. (David himself indicated which would be sold under his own name and those that will be shared.) David has farmed his vines organically since 2006 and after experimenting with de-stemming, leaves a tiny stem (pedicelles) on the fruit from his grand crus. When I was more regularly tasting David’s wines a few years ago, I found them to be competent but perhaps just trying a little too earnestly, as if desperate to make a positive impressive. There is nothing wrong with that, but the modern sheen tended to render them a little formulaic. Returning to David’s 2012, it is clear that he has changed his approach. The oak was more judiciously used than in the past, and the classic style of wines marries well with someone who is clearly a talented winemaker. Some of the hardcore Truchot acolytes out there are still dwelling the loss of their beloved domaine, but maybe they should take a look at these wines. I suspect they will serve to cheer them up. David’s 2012 samples had been taken from barrel. He used some whole cluster fruit, for example, 60% for his premier crus. eRobertParker.com.December, 2013
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