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2012 Vosne Romanee Les Malconsorts Christiane

Montille; Hubert de

95Average Score
flagBurgundy / France
Red

There are 7½ barrels of the 2012 Vosne-Romanee 1er Cru Les Malconsorts Christiane this year from 0.48 hectares of vines tucked into La Tache. Ever since this prize plot came into Etienne de Montille’s hands, he has felt that it creates a different Pinot Noir to the regular Malconsorts and I can vouch for that myself having compared the two cuvees blind over three of four vintages in Paris, back in 2009. They both undergo identical vinification. It has a wonderful, exuberant bouquet laden with vivacious orange sorbet, strawberry preserve, minerals and incense like fireworks across the sky. The palate is medium-bodied, streamlined with very fine lithe tannins accompanied by a fine silver thread of acidity. It feels more compact, perhaps denser and more imposing than the regular Malconsorts and delivers a long persistent finish to complete a swarthy Malconsorts Christiane that is suffused with grandiloquence. Tempted?||I was interested to learn that when Hubert de Montille inherited his father’s vines in 1947, it consisted of just three hectares. Over the years he built up both his family’s holdings and his reputation from his base in Volnay, not far from Michel Lafarge, while running a successful law firm in Dijon. During the 1990s he gradually handed over the running to his son Etienne, who was working in the financial sector and his daughter Alix, married to Jean-Marc Roulot. It was during Etienne’s tenure at Credit Foncier that he was charged with running Chateau de Puligny-Montrachet. That was probably when I first met him, somewhere around 1998, the first time accompanied by his father. Etienne is not a man to take things easy. He established a negociant business in 2003 (Les Deux Montille) that is based in the old Bouchard Pere cellars on the outskirts of Meursault, converted the vineyard to organic viticulture in 1995 and then biodynamic in 2005. Though certified by Ecocert in 2012 he has always been less dogmatic about it than others practitioners. The biggest development in recent years is the acquisition of the mouth-watering Thomas-Moillard holdings in 2005 in conjunction with Domaine Dujac and outside investors. If I am to be honest, the rapid changes have made it difficult to keep up with the changes, not that anyone is protesting against improvements. I guess it is just a case of keeping pace with Etienne! Today they tend just over 20 hectares of vine of which three-quarters are either premier or grand cru. See also Chateau du Puligny-Montrachet. As usual, there is a clutch of excellent wines here, each appearing to articulate the vagaries of each terroir with style. eRobertParker.com.December, 2013

Neal Martin    Score: 94-96/100

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