2012 1er Cru Rugiens Domaine Fernand & Laurent Pillot

Grapes Pinot Noir
Colour Red
Origin France, Burgundy
District Côte d'Or
Sub-district Côte de Beaune
Village Pommard
Classification 1er Cru
ABV 13%
Vineyard Rugiens

66 ares (100 of these to the hectare), in three parcels. Considerably more structured than the Charmots, but Laurent's vines are for the most part not on the hard white limestone of the top of the hill (where the de Courcel parcel is, for example, so it is not brutal, but still a big wine, dense and pure, with good concentrated depth. Black fruit and 'black mineral', beefy richness and twining licorice. L&S (Dec 2013)

*Case Price: Mix any 12 bottles of wine or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits or Fortified to get the 'case price' for each bottle.

(from a .66 ha holding located in both Bas and Hauts). Very generous but not dominant wood fights somewhat with the markedly ripe, dense and complex aromas of black cherry, cassis, spice, floral and wet stone. There is plenty of minerality in evidence on the concentrated, muscular and serious big-bodied flavors that possess a sleekly muscular mouth feel, all wrapped in a strikingly persistent and well-balanced finish. Again I note that my suggested range implicitly assumes that the wood will be largely absorbed with time in bottle. 2024+ Rating: 91-93 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com (Apr 2014)

The 2012 Pommard 1er Cru Les Rugiens has a satisfying earthy bouquet with broody blackberry fruit mingling with damp earth and woodland scents. The palate is medium-bodied with a supple, ripe opening. Fleshy redcurrant and cranberry fruit at the fore, good structure and it just seems to finish a little too quickly – just when I was enjoying it! Hopefully it will gain a little volume with bottle age. Rating: 89+ Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com (Mar 2014)

Rating: 93 Tim Atkin MW, www.timatkin.com (Jan 2014)

Some toffee and caramel character here, with more of their hallmark beautiful fruit. Suitably tannic finish for Pommard – grippy but not harsh – and a long, savoury finish. Less overtly fruit-centric than their Charmots – so perhaps more suited to traditionalists. 2016-2030 Rating: 17.5 Richard Hemming - www.JancisRobinson.com (Jan 2014)

Domaine Fernand & Laurent Pillot

Laurent's wife Marie-Anne inherited half of her family's property, the Pommard domaine of Pothier-Rieusset, and he and his father have now bought the other half. The wines from this domaine represent excellent value, and they age very well too, despite being attractive young.

Laurent's 1992 Grandes Ruchottes came top of a tasting of wines of that vintage in 2012, ahead of some supposedly much 'grander' domaines. Laurent manages to pack in a lot alongside his running of the vineyard. He has a sophisticated microlight which he flies to all corners of France, he keeps and hunts hawks, and conducts the Chassagne brass band as well as dabbling in Mayoral duties - on top of being a father.

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