POMMARD

2019 1er Cru Fremiers Domaine de Courcel

Grapes Pinot Noir
Colour Red
Origin France, Burgundy
District Côte d'Or
Sub-district Côte de Beaune
Village Pommard
Classification 1er Cru
ABV 13.5%
Vineyard Fremiers

Firmer again than the Croix Noires, tannins which are a little harsher. Lots of black graphitey density and a certain severity. Give it time! Drinking range: 2032 - 2045 L&S (Oct 2020)


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This too is sufficiently reduced to mask the underlying fruit, but it seems clear that it is ripe. More interesting are the finer and less powerful though no less concentrated medium weight flavors that coat the palate on the equally firm, lingering and youthfully austere finale that is a bit more complex. Note that this too is constructed to reward extended cellaring and 20 years of improvement is not out of the question. Drinking range: 2036 - Rating: 91-93 Allen Meadows, www.Burghound.com (Apr 2021)

Cask sample. Mid crimson. Sweeter-smelling than the Vaumuriens, vibrant, lifted red fruits. The tannins are finer too, lighter and fresher overall. A very different style and more approachable, even though the tannins build in your mouth on the second taste. Drinking range: 2024 - 2034 Rating: 16 Julia Harding MW, www.JancisRobinson.com (Jan 2021)

Domaine de Courcel

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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