2013 Bourgogne Hautes Cotes de Nuits

Anne Gros

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Average Score 85.0

The 2013 Hauts Cotes de Nuits Rouge has a slightly muted bouquet. The palate is crisp with dark berry fruit, slightly autumnal with crisp acidity and a light, pointed blackberry finish. Like the Bourgogne Rouge it is missing a little substance at the moment but maybe it will put on some weight by bottling?||Arriving chez Anne Gros in Vosne, her courtyard was busy with suitcases, as a family was checking out of her gîtes that overlooks the courtyard. It was all hustle and bustle and Anne herself was looking hassled. Running a successful winery on its own is not always smooth sailing and no doubt checking that guests have not departed with a large stain of Pinot on the carpet must also be stressful. I told her to sit down and have a cup of tea. It’s how we English cope with stress. Then again, perhaps she could wait until after I had tasted her 2013s that were mostly in vat. Anne recounted all the travails of the season that included a brief breakdown in translation when discussing her Chambolle Musigny la Combe d'Orveaux. I thought she said that kangaroos had attacked her vines. That would be a first for Vosne-Romanée. She actually meant deer, and the result is that thanks to “Bambi," there is no Chambolle Musigny la Combe d'Orveaux this year. (She also had problems with wild boars, and also in the Hauts Côtes by birds and “moucherons” or flies.) She picked from October 7 and finished up in the Hauts Côtes on October 18, so late that the berries were about to fall off the vine by touch. She told me that in 2013 she wanted to wait as long as possible in order to achieve phenolic ripeness and also, she wanted to avoid any hard tannin. She also moderated her levels of new oak, reducing the Grand Crus to around 60% instead of 80% in the past (although this can be difficult to manage when your yields are low.) This was a respectable set of wines, albeit not reaching the heady levels of what I feel are her superior 2012s, that demonstrated greater fruit intensity and complexity. These are lighter, but still elegant, perhaps occasionally missing a little substance and just a bit “serious” – contrary to Anne’s own light-hearted disposition. The question that I asked myself is whether she in fact might have benefited from picking earlier and avoiding the rains?, 2014

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