CLOS DES LAMBRAYS

2019 Grand Cru Domaine des Lambrays

EN PRIMEUR

(produced from two large parcels of differing vine ages - one that is approximately two-thirds of the blend and is now 50+ years of age and a second, smaller group of vines that is approximately 25+ years of age; made with 80% whole clusters and 50% new wood). An extremely subtle application of wood sets off the intensely floral-scented nose of herbal tea, poached plum, spice elements and a hint of newly turned earth. There is excellent volume to the caressing yet punchy medium weight plus flavors that exude both a lovely minerality and focused power on the delineated and beautifully persistent finish where the only reproach is a hint of wood. 2019 is a fine vintage for Clos des Lambrays and one that should repay extended keeping. Drinking range: 2034 - Rating: 92-95 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com (Jan 2021)

In Bond

75cl bottles (wood case of 3)

Sold Out

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The 2019 Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru is very promising indeed, mingling scents of blood orange, wild berries and plums with notions of exotic spices, wilted rose petals, row cocoa and loamy soil. Full-bodied, velvety and layered, it's deep and multidimensional, with a concentrated, elegantly fleshy core, lively acids, largely concealed tannins and a precise, perfumed finish. Rating: 94-96 William Kelley, The Wine Advocate (Jan 2021)

Jacques has gone with 80% whole bunch and 60% new wood, whereas Thierry Brouin preferred 50% new wood but all of it from François Frères. Jacques has varied his barrel coopers a little more and paid extra attention to the chauffe. We tasted almost all the cuvées and there were radical differences depending on location and vine age. What matters though will be the final blend, of which Jacques prepared me what should be an accurate version. A fine deep and even crimson. Complex bouquet as you might expect after tasting all the components. There is a serene weight to this, with waves of detail. A richer fruit perhaps than before and though the whole bunch percentage is 80% it is much more submerged in the fruit. Starting to get some aromatic top notes, very persistent. Neither acid nor tannins standing out, more the fruit but with a sense of a refined structure too. Very beautiful complex, perfumed finish. I am not going to say that Jacques has gone straightaway back to the great vintage of the ‘20s and ‘30s but there is very considerable promise here. Tasted: November 2020 **** Rating: 93 - 97 Jasper Morris - Inside Burgundy  (Jan 2021)

The 2019 Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru was tasted both as separate parcels per vine age and as a final blend, which is 13.6° alcohol. This year the whole bunch contribution is 80%, matured in 60% new oak, which is a little more than it used to be and from various cooperages (hitherto it was exclusively François Frères with very light toasting.) This has an intense bouquet, initially very tightly wound and requiring aeration, gradually revealing predominantly black fruit, crushed limestone, graphite and pressed iris flower aromas. Very fine delineation but certainly aromatics that will require bottle age. The palate confirms this. It is very fresh on the entry with a much subtler influence of the stems compared to those under former winemaker Thierry Brouin. There is a light tang of white pepper and tobacco, very fine tannins with a poised, almost understated finish that is silky smooth in texture. Swallowing a mouthful (it was the finally tasting of the day) there is persistence that I think was lacking in recent vintages. This balletic, "Margot Fonteyne of Morey-Saint-Denis", will pirouette across your senses. Drinking range: 2025 - 2050 Rating: 95-97 Neal Martin, www.vinous.com (Dec 2020)

The 'Clos' consists of 8.66 hectares of land enclosed by a wall in which there is the original milestone marking its founding in 1365, confirmed in the records of the Abbaye de Citeaux (those monks knew where to place a vineyard). The Clos owes much of its current fame to the nineteenth and twentieth century proprietors who reconstituted it after the fragmentation of ownership which followed the French revolution. Despite always having been considered a Grand Cru site, the Clos was in fact classified Premier Cru in the original 1936 appellations contrôlées.

The Rodier family which owned it from the 1930s fought to regain its Grand cru status, with eventual success only in 1981, when it became the last of the thirty-three Grands Crus of Burgundy, although by then it had passed to the Saier family. Recently under the benign ownership of the Günther Freund and his family, who gave a very free hand to régisseur Thierry Brouin, who had been employed by their predecessor Rolland Pelletier de Chambure, the quality of the wines here has pushed up again. In 2014 it was bought by the LVMH group.

It has been all rather quick change here as Jacques Devauge has taken over here after a short interregnum under Boris Champy. The legacy of Thierry Brouin can still be felt, Jacques decribing him as having been 'clairvoyant' in his approach to the domaine, which has set it up well to deal with challenges of warmer vintages. Jacques seems set to take this estate onward - 'every domaine has to challenge itself to do better', he says. 2019 marks the second year being fully organic - if all goes well they will be certified after another two.

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