2017 1er Cru Rugiens Domaine de Courcel


Yves tastes this after the Grand Clos des EPenots and you can see why, it is a real change of gear. Great news - a blast of cool fresh Pinot Noir. Palate has a racy feel. Intense, more edge and cut here. More tightly-furled fruit at the core. a restrained hardness. The tannins are here for the long haul - but protect the really lovely fruit - soft strawberry flesh peeks out and deliciously ripe plum juice. Really nice firm drive - but not aggressive finish.L&S(Nov 2018)

* This is a pre-shipment/primeur offer. All orders are accepted under the TERMS of this offer which differ from the terms of the rest of the site.

(from a 1.07 ha parcel in Rugiens-Hauts). A brooding and slightly fresher highly spiced nose grudgingly reveals notes of plum, cassis, violet, sandalwood and tea. The intensely mineral-driven and muscular large-scaled flavors possess finer tannins, yet the mouthfeel is less opulent and rich, all wrapped in a mocha-infused, long and firmly structured finale. This too could fairly be described as atypical and particular. Drinking range: 2032 - Rating: 90 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com(Apr 2020)

(from a 1.07 ha parcel in Rugiens-Hauts). A brooding if highly spiced nose grudgingly reveals notes of plum, cassis, violet, sandalwood and tea. The intensely mineral-driven and muscular large-scaled flavors possess finer tannins yet the mouth feel is less opulent and rich, all wrapped in a balanced, long and again, very firmly structured finale. Even so, this is not quite as overtly tannic as the Epenots though this too will require extended patience before it arrives at its apogee. Drinking range: 2037 - Rating: 91-93 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com(Apr 2019)

Very firm and bony. Definitely shouts out for attention. Long and powerful. Should please some palates less interested in subtlety than power. Drinking range: 2023 - 2033 Rating: 16.5 Jancis Robinson OBE MW - www.JancisRobinson.com(Jan 2019)

Jump up a step to Pommard, 1er Cru Les Rugiens, for even more majesty and depth. This is one of the wines of the day! Rating: 18.5+ Matthew Jukes www.matthewjukes.com(Jan 2019)

Cocoa powder on the nose. This is silky smooth and fine. It glides on the palate. A Pommard of some finesse. It has a lively salty sapidity. It is layered and straight and fine. Salty finish. Cocoa powder at the end. Talc texture at the end. Just a delight. Rating: 19.25 Sarah Marsh MW, The Burgundy Briefing(Dec 2018)

Big, bold, ferrous and rich, this is true to the domaine's aim to produce serious, slightly forbidding wines that take a long time to soften in bottle. Blood, iron and a butcher's shop full of guts and fresh meat, this needs a decade but will reward your patience. Drinking range: 2027 - 2035 Rating: 94 Tim Atkin MW - Decanter(Nov 2018)

Ce cru brille toute à la fois par son raffinement et sa complexité. Ici, malgré la concentration du fruit, la trame reste exceptionnellement fine. L’affinage en cave canalisera l’énergie de ce vin intense, qui grandira pendant plusieurs décennies. (Spécial Millésime 2017) Rating: 18-18.5 La Revue du Vin de France(Jun 2018)

One of the great domaines of Pommard, with a 400 year history in the same family. The domaine produces a small amount of Bourgogne Chardonnay, a completely over-performing Bourgogne Rouge, a village Pommard (Vaumuriens, 1.44 ha), but the biggest part of the domaine consists of four great Premier Cru expressions of the terroir of Pommard, Fremiers (0.79 ha), Croix Noires (0.58 ha), Grand Clos des Epenots (4.89 ha) and Rugiens (1.07 ha). These represent a very different style to the Clos des Épeneaux of Comte Armand, for example. Yves Confuron, the régisseur, describes the difference between the two top wines by saying that the Grand Clos is 'terreux' while the Rugiens is 'aérien'.

The aim is to limit yields to around 25hl/ha, to attain optimum ripeness. The vines are ploughed, and pruned carefully to suit each one, then de-budded in spring and green-harvested in August to keep the fruit load balanced. Following Yves' usual practice the harvest is late and the vatting is long - usually around a month, with a cold maceration leading into a cool fermentation, and a long post-fermentation soak under the protection of the carbon dioxide given off by the fermentation. The wines are developed in barrel over 21 to 23 months, with a third of the barrels being replaced each year. After racking they are bottled without fining or filtration.

The domaine produces wines with astonishing depth and density that still retain the freshness, just like Yves' own wines at Domaine Confuron-Cotetidot. They are classic vins de garde and patience is advised - and will be amply rewarded.


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