2018 Tavannes Domaine Fernand & Laurent Pillot
|Côte de Beaune
That slightly broader, sweeter richness of Pommard, sweet dense fruit picked up with lovely acidity - gorgeous, lots of punch and character. L&S (Oct 2019)
*Case price discount: Mix any 12 bottles of wine (or 9 litre equivalent) or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits, Sweet Wine or Fortified (4.5 litres) to get the discounted 'case price' for each bottle.
(Pillot noted that this had been bottled the day before my visit). A mentholated top note is present on the elegant, cool and airy aromas of red pinot fruit that is laced with plenty of earth elements. There is excellent vibrancy to the beautifully delineated medium weight flavors that culminate in a dusty, serious and sneaky long finish. This needs to develop more depth but it should be capable of that as there is good underlying material. One to consider. Drinking range: 2025 - Rating: 89 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com (Apr 2020)
Very pale crimson. Racy damson fruit on the nose and finesse on the palate, within the confines of a Pommard, bien sur. Masses of fine tannin. Definitely for the long term. Drinking range: 2025 - 2038 Rating: 16.5+ Jancis Robinson OBE MW - www.JancisRobinson.com (Jan 2020)
Earthy and wild nose with lots of power. Lots of dense and chewy fruit, earthy dark cherry with an iron note and very Pommard in style. Drinking range: 2024 - 2030 Rating: 16+ Alistair Cooper MW - www.JancisRobinson.com (Jan 2020)
Domaine Fernand & Laurent Pillot
The origins of the Pillot family in Chassagne can be traced back to the eighteenth century, when they seem to have been coopers more than vignerons. In the nineteenth century they abandoned barrel-making in favour of enlarging the property in Chassagne. Fernand and Laurent, who is the fourth generation, added to it again in 1992, and then in 2001 Laurent's wife Marie-Anne inherited half of her family's property, the Pommard domaine of Pothier-Rieusset, and Laurent and his father bought the other half. The domaine now stands at 14.5 hectares of vines across almost the whole length of the Côte de Beaune from Santenay to Beaune.
The Domaine is worked according to organic principles and are ploughed – no chemical weedkillers are used. They have also been members of the Dephy-ECO-phyto group, which works to reduce the number of treatments using copper sulphate, since 2012. In 2021 they began the process of organic certification.
Laurent has always managed to pack in a lot alongside his running of the vineyard. He has his own plane which he flies to all corners of France, used keep and hunts hawks, and conducts the Chassagne brass band as well as dabbling in Mayoral duties - on top of being a father of three, Anaïs, Adrien and Eugène. They are all mad about the alps and disappear up the mountains at regular intervals.
Laurent's eldest son Adrien has been travelling the world making wine all over the place for the last few years having completed his training in Beaune. Bringing back lessons learnt in Australia, South Africa and California (and from a stint at Lea & Sandeman), During harvest Adrien is now the one in the winery while Laurent takes charge of the picking team. The wines have long been L&S favourites in both red and white - they represent excellent value, and they age very well too, despite being attractive young. The whites are precise and pure, and not lacking for body and generosity, while the reds are velvety and juicy, beautifully balanced even if drunk young on their expressive Pinot fruit. The domaine was rightfully heralded in Decanter Magazine as 'an address that deserves to be better-known'. Great value and real pleasure across their range.
Read more about Adrien here in this recent Forbes article here.
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