Matthew Jukes -Articles- Notes

2022 En Primeur Burgundy Week PART 4 of 4

The finest wines of the vintage from the Magnificent Seven

Lea & Sandeman, Goedhuis Waddesdon, Corney & Barrow, Jeroboams, Justernini & Brooks, Haynes, Hanson & Clark and Berry Bros. & Rudd

This introduction was also published yesterday.

I have already posted two free-to-view Wednesday Wines posts on the 2022 Burgundy En Primeur campaign from two merchants who released their wines a week earlier than the crowd.

I have made my thoughts very clear about the character of the vintage and my opinions about whether you should consider buying any wines.  Over the course of last week, I tasted around a thousand wines from the ‘Magnificent Seven’ of Burgundy specialist merchants.  It is impossible to attend every tasting during the week as a couple overlap, so I regret not having time to visit the Howard Ripley and Flint events which are always worthwhile.

A couple of comments I heard during the week added colour to my statements on the vintage.

My favourite was, “You cannot complete a task to your best ability if you are rushed.  And you stand no chance at all if you panic.”  The extreme temperatures foreshortened the ripening period for the vines up and down the Côte d’Or and I am certain you can taste the panic in many of the lesser wines.   In 2022, it was hotter than the 2003 vintage and we all know what happened in these Hades-hot conditions.  In August 2022, most winemakers rushed out and brought in their fruit too early.   Many lacked the confidence to trust their vines and the noble terroir.  A few Domaines who remember 2003 had the courage to hold on, realising that while alcohol levels might climb a touch, their vines could moderate their ‘wiring’ and draw on deeper reserves underground to pack in complexity, and more profound flavours than just the primary fruit notes that were present.  One notable Domaine is Jean Grivot, whose wines were harvested later than many and the results are fascinating.  These are wines with fruit, acid, depth, minerality a sense of place and proper length of flavour.  And Grivot is not alone – I found some very smart reds that showed true balance and potential.  These elements are minimum requirements for me to reach for my cheque book, but in 2022 they are rare so please follow my advice and don’t repeat order those estates you usually go for because they might be among the rabble who dropped the ball in 2022, making plain, fruity, forward, simple and safe wines.   I, for one, require style, accuracy and panache when I buy wine from this stellar region, so do not drop your standards this year.

Perhaps ask yourself, ‘Why are you buying En Primeur Burgundy?’.   Is it because you drink a couple of cases yearly, so you need to top up?

If that’s the case, then you need to be very careful – these whites are drinking now, so you will have to put another vintage back in the cellar, and I cannot think of another recent vintage that can confidently handle an extra 12 months!  Reds are a different matter – don’t touch those 2019s.  You can use 2022 reds wisely if you can afford them!  See below for wines that will put a smile on your face, even if they don’t manage to fire up elemental passions within your soul!

With an even larger vintage coming in 2023 and pressure increasing on prices to come down, there is an outside chance that Burgundy will see some correction that might allow us to fall back in love with buying En Primeur.   Many private clients I spoke to will simply not buy 2022 Burgundy EP this year, leaving these wines to restaurants keen to replenish their cellars with wines that are ready to go.   Many fine wine merchants were out of drinking white Burgundy, but they are not now!  At last, they can offer people decent village wines for immediate consumption.

I find myself hunting for 2017s on wine lists these days – they are the most recent vintage of white wines that have retained some semblance of balancing acidity and style.  The same will not be true about the 2022s in five years.

I am confident that all but the grandest wines will have been drunk.  So, caveat emptor and read on for wines I would consider buying.  I can assure you that these are the finest wines, and given their relatively fair prices, they qualify for my coveted QP accreditation!

AUTHOR’S NOTE – Some of my recommendations are sold by multiple fine wine merchants (including some not mentioned below).  The listing for each wine occurs under the merchant where I tasted this wine first during the course of the week.  If you fancy these wines, please do cast around if you cannot find it under its nominated merchant because there ought to be enough stock to go around if you get your skates on!

Jeroboams

(e) enprimeur@jeroboams.co.uk (t) 020 7288 8888

Jeroboams showed a full complement of wines, from generic wines to a host of Grands Crus. It was an impressive line-up, and in common with the other merchants, many of the wines looked very forward and flattering. Pricing is admittedly somewhat punchy this year, but plenty of wines represent decent value if you look closely. Of course, the following QP wines are remarkably accurate, impactful, and attractively priced. Read on for my picks.

white

2022 Bourgogne Côte d’Or Chardonnay, Domaine Bachelet-Monnot 

£130 per 6 bottles IB

Just stunning. There is so much depth and refinement here it is staggering. From the first moment until the last molecule dissipates on the palate, this is every inch a diva, and the value is incredible. Ignore the label – this could be a Puligny on any day of the week.  17.5/20

2022 Bourgogne Chardonnay, La Tufera, Domaine Etienne Sauzet 

£295 per 12 bottles IB

I have bought La Tufera many times over the years, and you will have seen my write-up on the Puligny from Sauzet yesterday. This generic Sauzet white is less than half the price of the Puligny, and yet it is not half the wine. In fact, it is rather delicious as well as being on the brink of drinking. Engaging, accurate and with more than a slice of Puligny grace and minerality, this is an essential wine in 2022.  17.5/20

2022 Meursault, Clos de la Velle, Domaine Darviot-Perrin 

£375 per 6 bottles IB

This is a superb wine with amazing freshness and purity. Many of the whites from this critical sector of the Côte are flabby and blunt, and this cuvée is dreamy. Following this wine, Darviot’s 1er Cru Charmes (£675 per 6 bottles IB; 18+/20) was another brilliant creation with impressive complexity and intensity, but with nigh on twice the price, it underlines the relative value of the fabulous Clos de la Velle.  18/20

red

2022 Hautes-Côtes de Nuits, Le Prieuré, Domaine Aurélien Verdet

£125 per 6 bottles IB

I was umming and ahhing about including this wine, but it is a very accomplished piece of winemaking, and it is a rare candidate that seems closed, firm and in need of some age. There is superb purity here and good depth, too, so its unassuming label hides a wine of uncommon class. And then the price! This is a benchmark QP wine, given you are highly unlikely to feel guilty about opening a bottle or two on any occasion!  17+/20

2022 Côte de Nuits-Villages, Marchand-Tawse

£295 per 12 bottles IB

This is one of the silkiest and most polished of the ‘inexpensive reds’, and it might, on the face of it, seem a little superficial until the back palate looms and it brings a framework, tension and complexity. This remarkable wine will drink well from the off but hold well into the latter half of this decade!  17.5/20

2022 Maranges, 1er Cru La Fussière, Domaine Bachelet-Monnot 

£160 per 6 bottles IB

This is the red sibling to the spectacular Bourgogne Côte d’Or. Don’t waste a second and load up – this is a beautifully balanced, expressive and pinpoint-accurate Pinot, and it shows, once again, that Maranges is a superb spot in hot vintages and that the B-M duo can cope with anything thrown at them!  17.5/20

2022 Morey-Saint-Denis, Crais Gillon, Domaine Odoul-Coquard

£220 per 6 bottles IB

This is the first time I have recommended a wine from this Domaine. I particularly like this cuvée because it is village-specific, deeply fruity and rather stylish to boot! It also has superb acidity and a lick of tannin on the finish, which warrants a ‘+’ in my score. I am certain that there is considerable development ahead, and the value of a wine with this attack, mid-palate silkiness and length is terrific.  17.5+/20

2022 Nuits-Saint-Georges, La Petite Charmotte, Marchand-Tawse

£295 per 6 bottles IB

I was wooed by Marchand-Tawse’s Beaune 1er Cru Clos du Roi (£250 per 6 bottles IB), and this wine, with its pristine fruit and devastating clarity, would have made the cut for this Report, but then I tasted La Petite Charmotte! What a wine. There is a serious amplitude of flavour here, with one of the longest finishes I have seen in this vintage. Along the way, the trademark, luxurious M-T texture grabs the attention and never lets go. Superb. And there is more to come.  18+/20

 

Justerini & Brooks

(e) justbrooksorders@justerinis.com (t) 020 7484 6430

J&B has a fabulous selection of Domaines, and many of these pop up in other wine merchant portfolios, so be prepared to shop around. Likewise, if a wine has been mentioned in my other reviews, check J&B, too, because it might appear on their portfolio – Bachelet-Monnot, Sauzet and Grivot, to name but three. Domaine Ghislaine Barthod’s wines have not been allocated prices, so I can’t assess relative value, but I thought that her Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Véroilles was sublime!

white

2022 Pernand-Vergelesses Blanc, Domaine Rollin

£138 per 6 bottles IB

I have previously mentioned Rollin’s Les Cloux, and this wine weighs in at £171 per 6-pack, so it focuses the mind to learn that the superb village wine from this eminent producer saves more than a fiver per bottle! With a gorgeous chalky subplot and shimmeringly clean Chardonnay fruit, this is a pinpoint accurate wine that soars above the vintage conditions. Well done, Rollin, for making such competitive and delicious wines.  17.5/20

red

2022 Savigny-lès-Beaune, 1er Cru Les Lavières, Domaine Tollot-Beaut

£205 per 6 bottles IB

You can reply on Tollot-Beaut to craft direct, perfumed, and velvety wines year in and year out, and 2022 is no exception. I am a lifelong Les Lavières fan, so I was willing this wine along. What a relief that it performed at the top of its game with seamless fruit and superb amplitude of flavour. This joyous wine will work well for the next five years.  17.5/20

2022 Nuits-Saint-Georges, 1er Cru Les Vaucrains, Domaine Henri Gouges

£620 per 12 bottles IB

There are very few wines that declare, from the off, that they need a good few years to get it together before slowly but surely blossoming into a rare beauty. This is one. The Les Vaucrains vineyard is an exceptional plot of land. I have always felt that the best wines from this uniquely situated vineyard have Grand Cru qualities, and this is one. While you will have to reach a little deeper into your pocket than for some of my recommendations, it is absolutely worth it!  18.5+/20

2022 Nuits-Saint-Georges, 1er Cru Clos de la Marechale, Domaine Jacques-Frédéric Mugnier

£525 per 6 bottles IB

From one stellar Nuits to another. Perhaps it is no surprise that this mineral-soaked village experienced remarkable successes in 2022. I tasted this wine several times, and it made a profound impression each time. Generous, decadent, regal and magnetically appealing, this is such an easy wine to fall for and one that is impossible not to forget. 

It will undoubtedly drink early, but do not rush in too soon because this is a ten-year wine if there ever was one in 2022!  18.5+/20

2022 Gevrey-Chambertin, Les Seuvrées, Domaine Robert Groffier

£745 per 6 bottles IB

It is very odd to recommend a jolly expensive wine and one that comes from the ‘wrong side of the road’, but with Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru as a neighbour, this is clearly decent real estate. With 25% whole bunch, this is a worthy example of whole bunches being deployed to great effect. Unfortunately, there are countless examples of whole bunch misuse in 2022, as winemakers sought to offset what they thought was over ripeness but was, in fact, just sugar ripeness and not physiological ripeness, and these one-dimensional flavours do not take to being punctured but overt greenness. Groffier’s Les Seuvrées is a masterclass in forensic whole bunch balance, elevating this luxurious wine to another level. It adds to the perfume, mid-palate and complexity of tannin, and while it commands a hefty spend, this is one for 100% committed Pinot-Freaks who will most likely be very reluctant to share sips of this fascinating wine.  18.5+/20

Haynes, Hanson & Clark

(e) london@hhandc.co.uk (t) 020 7584 7927

I always love the HH&C tasting because it starts with wine after wine that represents excellent value and builds to a superb crescendo. But in 2022, it is not only value that counts towards QP status. Read on for the stars – there are wines here that were not found in any other tasting and a J-F Mugnier’s stunner that has already been mentioned above.

white

2022 Chablis, 1er Cru Lys, Domaine Daniel Dampt & Fils

£228 per 12 bottles IB

A famous restaurateur I bumped into last week said, ‘I want pain when I taste EP Chablis’, and he is right – virtually every Chablis I tasted in this vintage had more hints of lemon posset than of razor-sharp ice pick! Dampts wines pop up at a couple of tastings, and Lys is a very successful Cru in this vintage. Granted, this is a fairly forward wine, but there is superb grip behind the scenes, and this enlivens the palate like no other similarly priced Chablis this week! 

17.5/20

2022 Rully Blanc, 1er Cru Les Cloux, Domaine Claudie Jobard

£315 per 12 bottles IB

Another Rully steps up; gosh, this village is having its time in the sunshine in this vintage (literally)! And yet, it has held onto gripping minerality and verve. Give it a year, and then dive in. This is a nerve-tingling wine that is GPS-precise and thoroughly lip-smacking.  17.5/20

2022 Chablis, 1er Cru Vaillons Cuvée Guy Moreau, Domaine Christian Moreau & Fils

£175 per 6 bottles IB; £182 per 3 magnums IB

I am certain that this is not a Chablis Grand Cru vintage! Harsh I

know, but these noble wines need serious hang time to load complexity and depth of flavour, and 2022 did not permit this luxury. So, I searched for Grand Cru-like presence in the other wines and found it in this heroic wine. Beautiful, layered and serene, underpinned with crystalline acidity, this is not only a wine to consider in bottle format. Check out the magnums on offer, too, because this is the ultimate Chablis of the campaign.   18/20

2022 Pernand-Vergelesses, 1er Cru Sous Frétille, Domaine Pavelot

£375 per 12 bottles IB

Yet again, a P-V stands up and is counted in 2022, and this one comes from my favourite white Premier Cru vineyard in the village. I have championed this estate for the last couple of years, and it is one of the finest wines I have tasted. Firm, edgy, refined, long and even, this is a delightful wine and one that crackles with chalky tension.  17.5/20

2022 Meursault, 1er Cru Les Ravelles, Domaine Chapelle de Blagny

£320 per 6 bottles IB

There are two wines from this terrific estate that scored identical 18s, and the main difference between the two is that Les Ravelles is more forward and enticing right now, and Meursault 1er Cru Blagny Sous le Dos d’Âne (£320 per 6 bottles IB; 18+/20) is closed and introverted and will require at least four years to unravel (yes, that’s a pun)! In a surprisingly short period, Chapelle de Blagny has become a must-buy Meursault producer. These bottles cost less than £70 all in, and I think this is a steal for this level of refinement.  18/20

red

2022 Bourgogne Côte d’Or Les Maison-Dieu, Domaine Joannès Violot-Guillemard

£145 per 6 bottles IB

I cannot underline enough how impressive the wines are at Domaine Joannès Violot-Guillemard in 2022. This Bourgogne Rouge is downright beautiful, with a fabulous texture and ridiculous depth and length for a wine of this nomenclature and price. It is a must-buy, so get on the phone now. In addition, Pommard En Brescul (£324 per 6 bottles IB; 18+/20) is a thriller and a rare wine from this village in 2022 that I feel is of the highest standard and worthy of QP status!  17.5/20

2022 Chorey-lès-Beaune, Les Beaumonts, Domaine Decelle & Fils

£295 per 12 bottles IB

This is the second wine from this vineyard to make the grade! Domaine Joël Remy was the other Les Beaumont protagonist, and I cannot only deduce that the turf here is special! Decelle took a different approach to Les Beaumonts, this time loading it with new oak, and, unbelievably, it worked. This is a showy, layered, ravishing wine with a lot going for it and it is wicked value, too.  17.5+/20

2022 Corton, Grand Cru Clos du Roi, Domaine Joannès Violot-Guillemard

£695 per 6 bottles IB

This is my only red Grand Cru to make QP status this year, and it is so brilliant that instead of tucking it into the Les Maison-Dieu write-up, it warrants its own listing. Old vines, 1/3 new oak and loads of whole bunches make this a wine with a lot of grunt and stuffing, and yet the fruit soaks up these elements with great style. I love this wine, and you will, too, if you are, like me, obsessed with the perennially frustrating hobby of finding truly elite Corton! Game over – this is it.  18.5+/20

Berry Bros. & Rudd

(e) bbr@bbr.com (t) 0800 280 2440

With 284 wines, this was the largest tasting of all, and it goes without saying that there were a lot of worthy wines in the frame. It was also the final tasting of the week, so it is critical that if you fancy any wines listed under other merchants’ lists which have sold out, you must look to BBR because their selection is huge, and the allocations are strong here. Once again, the Domaine Ghislaine Barthod wines looked fabulous, but no prices were offered, so these cannot be included in a list of QP wines. Outside of Lea & Sandeman, it is the only place where I found Lignier-Michelot’s sublime Morey-Saint-Denis En la Rue de Vergy. Domaine Jean Grivot is well-represented here, too. But the estate that blew my mind, and I cannot include them in this report because of the lack of prices, was Domaine Henri Rebourseau. The Gevrey-Chambertin, Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Fonteny and Mazy-Chambertin Grand Cru were thrilling. This superstar estate is having life breathed back into its bones! Watch this space.

white

2022 Meursault, Les Tessons, Domaine Michel Bouzereau 

£360 per 6 bottles IB

This is a very open and engaging wine; you must not hide it in your cellar. It will drink well from the moment it hits your doorstep. I drank the 2020 vintage in December, and this wine seems like an identical twin! Bright, juicy, rewarding and indulgent, this spoiling wine brings 1er Cru depth of fruit for a lieu-dit price!  17.5/20

2022 Clos Blanc de Vougeot, 1er Cru, Domaine de la Vougeraie 

£630 per 6 bottles IB; £690 per 3 magnums IB; £485 per one double-magnum IB

This is one of the most compelling white wines of the 2022 harvest. There is something incongruous about a white wine made on red wine terroir, but it never fails to make my hair stand on end! In 2022, the wildflower nose, heavenly texture and power-packed finish mark this as a serious contender. Where most Grands Crus look sweetly ripe, short and blocky, this is a louche, expansive wine with sufficient tension to lend a dramatic air!   18.5/20

red

2022 Savigny-lès-Beaune, Benjamin Leroux

£180 per 6 bottles IB

Benjamin Leroux made a typically impressive array of wines in 2022, but I am especially tuned into those wines that offer superb value for money, and so when this beautiful red showed up and dipped under the £ 40 mark, it was a shoo-in for QP status. With a little more flesh than others and a hint of hedonism throughout, this is a fleshy wine which is already drinking nicely, so don’t feel the need to hold back with this wonderful treat!  17.5/20

2022 Volnay, 1er Cru Pitures, Domaine Bitouzet-Prieur

£375 per 6 bottles IB

This is the first time I have written up a wine from Bitouzet-Prieur, and it is the only Volnay this year to make the grade, so double congratulations!  The framework here reminds me of an old-school Volnay – a shape and size of Pinot Noir that I particularly adore. It has a whisper more flesh on the bone than one might expect while retaining refreshing earthiness and tension. This is not only an impressive wine at this extremely young age, but it also has all the elements to allow it to age well in the medium term. The final point in its favour is its relative value for money. This is an extremely well-situated vineyard, and it manages to stay this side of £80!  17.5+/20

 Conclusion

Over the last fortnight, I have recommended Bourgogne Blancs and Bourgogne Rouges and, from South to North, a wine or wines from Saint-Véran, Pouilly-Fuissé, Montagny, Mercurey, Rully, Maranges, Santenay, Puligny-Montrachet, Meursault, Volnay, Pommard, Beaune, Chorey-lès-Beaune, Savigny-lès-Beaune, Pernand-Vergelesses, Aloxe-Corton, Nuits-Saint-Georges, Vougeot, Chambolle-Musigny, Morey-Saint-Denis, Gevrey-Chambertin and Chablis.  So, while there are nowhere near as many QPs this year as I would have liked, the region has a broad spread of worthy wines, both geographically and price-wise.  Happy hunting.

FIN