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Average critic rating : 97.0 points
The 2012 Richebourg Grand Cru, which comes from a 0.28-hectare parcel planted in 1950, this year contains 20% whole bunches and the domaine were graced with five barrels. It has a very refined and distinctly aristocratic bouquet adorned with beautifully defined black and red fruits, perhaps leaning towards the former with aeration. Touches of seaweed and tilled earth emerge with time. The palate is medium-bodied with very fine tannins. It does not have the charm of the RSV at the moment, but there is beguiling structure and symmetry with a long mineral laden finish. Superb.||Dusk was falling as I pulled up outside Domaine Alain Hudelot-Noellat in Vougeot. It is always good to finish the day with a producer whose wines you admire and this was a fitting denouement to a long day in various cellars. I met Alain’s grandson, 25-year old Charles von Canneyt. After working in New Zealand, hence has superb English, his first vintage at the domaine was in 2008. He comes across as a relaxed, self-effacing winemaker at ease with the enviable cache of holdings, not predisposed to long orations about each wine, but willing to furnish you with everything you need to know. In a short space of time he has endured/experienced the whole gamut of vintages variations. “After 2012, I thought at least I had experienced the most difficult growing season,” he told me. “That was before 2013.” I replied that it was all part of a learning curve. It is just such seasons where you really hone your craft, and it stands you in a good stead for the future. He told me that after successful experimentations with whole cluster fermentation in 2011, he expanded this practice so that all the 2012s were vinified with 20% stem addition. The one anomaly is the Romanee-Saint-Vivant. Charles decided to literally “chuck in” a crate of stems, a little “seasoning” into the vat and he intends to continue the practice henceforth, perhaps in a more premeditated manner and subject to vintage variation. eRobertParker.com.December, 2013
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