The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Expert Picks: Marquis d’Angerville and…Marquis d’Angerville!

Two expert selections from David Gwo

David Gwo 12.8.14In Burgundy, the Côte d’Or stands above all other regions. The site of the most renowned red and white Burgundies, the Côte d’Or is divided into a north, Côte de Nuits, and south, Côte de Beaune. The wines produced from these two regions are distinctly different in character, with the Côte de Beaune being famous for white Burgundy in particular. In general, the reds from the Cote de Nuits tend to be more structured and powerful, while the reds from the Côte de Beaune tend to be a bit more expressive in fruit character. This is, however, a generalization because in the world of Burgundy, there are always exceptions to the rules. There are plenty of red Burgundies from the Côte de Beaune that rival those from the Côte de Nuits in structure, power, and detail.

One of the most famous red Burgundy villages in the Côte de Beaune is Volnay; it’s where arguably the most desirable reds from the Côte de Beaune derive. While there are no grand cru vineyards within this appellation, the top premier cru vineyards yield wines that can go head-to-head against some of the best grand crus out there. Historically, the reds of Volnay were light and delicate, but the today’s Volnays come in a wide variety of styles.

My focus today is on one of the leading domaines in Volnay, Domaine Marquis d’Angerville. Any serious Volnay enthusiast, or Burgundy enthusiast in general, recognizes the name Marquis d’Angerville. Along with Henri Gouges and Armand Rousseau, the late Jacques d’Angerville was a pioneer of the Burgundy wine movement during the early 1900’s. Today, the estate’s philosophy revolves around minimalism, and Marquis d’Angerville relies on its biodynamic viticultural practices, amazing vineyard sites, and old vines to produce wines of profound character.

Marquis d’Angerville 2009 Meursault 1er Cru Santenots $99.00

While Marquis d’Angerville is known for its reds, the domaine also owns a small vineyard parcel in Santenots within the village of Meursault from which they produce an outstanding white Burgund. Meursault is one of the top white Burgundy appellations, and when a domaine like Marquis d’Angerville is involved, the results are undoubtedly terrific. The 2009 vintage was a great one for both red and white Burgundy, and this is an example of what producers achieved that year. Notes of peach, pear, and minerals carry through on the nose and palate, with a nice, rich mouth-feel that will please now and through the end of the decade.

Marquis d’Angerville 2010 Volnay Champans 1er Cru $134.99

2005 and 2010 were the two best vintages of the decade for red Burgundy, and the reds from the Champans vineyard are quintessentially Volnay. Marquis d’Angerville produces an example that is full-bodied, possessing notes of red-berry fruit, flowers, earth, and minerals. Given the strength of the vintage, this is a bottling that has significant power and complexity on the palate, and this wine will require time in the cellar in order to reward optimal drinking pleasure.

Expert Picks: Domaine Lamarche and…Domaine Lamarche!

Two expert selections from Garrett Kowalsky

Garrett_8.6.14_72dpiEarlier this year I took time to honor the estate and legacy of Domaine François Lamarche, a Burgundy legend. I was in Aspen for the Food & Wine Classic last weekend, and I was reminded all over again why that legend deserves our praise and adulation. I was privy to a few vintage selections from the hallowed vineyards and cellars of Lamarche, so I wanted to share these wines with you again. I cannot emphasize more how special they are.

The wines produced from the fruit of the vineyard Grands Echézeaux are brooding, not a term often associated with Pinot. But in Grands Echézeaux, black fruit and deep red cherries abound on the nose and palate, as do telltale Asian spices, hoison and tea. These wines are also famous for being some of the longest-lived wine in the entire Côtes d’Or. I recently had these two bottles of Lamarche Echézeaux, and if you do insist upon drinking them, I highly suggest decanting them for 8-12 hours. However, give them years in the bottles and they will give you memories for a lifetime.

Domaine Lamarche 2011 Grands Echézeaux $329.99

As recent vintages go, the 2011 had more similarities to 2010 than most. The wines were decidedly middle-weight and “Burgundian” in style. These bottles are all about their elegance and their detail, and they will go for a very long time on the palate. The 2011 is complex and deftly weaves together fruit and spice. Drink from 2020 on.

Domaine Lamarche 2012 Grands Echézeaux $379.00

For a recent comparison for the 2012 vintage, you might look back to 2009. Now, there were many differences, i.e. 2009 was a bumper crop and 2012 saw a production dip of 50%, but the resulting wines from both vintages are voluptuous, rich, dense and seductive—wines that stain the palate. Because of these qualities, the wine might not go quite as far, but it is all relative because this Echézeaux will still be a joy for 30 years. Drink from 2018 on.

Expert Picks: Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux and…Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux!

Two expert selections from David Gwo

David Gwo 12.8.14The reds from Vosne-Romanée are some of the most revered wines in Burgundy. This is partly thanks to names like Domaine Romanee-Conti, or DRC for short, who makes Pinot Noir from the most prestigious Grand Cru vineyards in this appellation. These wines are among the most sought-after and collectible red Burgundies, and consequently, they are the most expensive as well. However, there are many notable producers in Vosne-Romanée that don’t command the astronomical pricing of DRC, and the estate I’ve chosen to focus on today is Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux.

Vosne-Romanées are special because these wines possess incredible intensity of flavor while maintaining a remarkable level of refinement and elegance. These are some of the “prettiest” reds you’ll taste, but don’t be fooled by their elegance; the best examples are extremely age-worthy. The late Robert Arnoux was one of the most highly reputed winemakers in Vosne-Romanée, and upon his passing his son-in-law, Pascal Arnoux, assumed duties at the domaine. Pascal worked with Robert starting in 1985, so he is more than capable of continuing the legacy. Today, the wines from Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux lean towards the modern style with a nice full color, well-integrated oak, and concentrated fruit. The selections below represent a Village classified wine that will be drinking well now and through the end of the decade, while the other is a Premier Cru classified wine that will reward some patience in the cellar.

Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux 2009 Vosne-Romanée $89.99

2009 is known to be a riper vintage, meaning that there is a lot of fruit-driven character associated with the wines. However, 2009 was a great vintage because that concentration of fruit was supported by the kind of structure that allows wines to age well while maintaining enough fruit to keep the wine interesting as it matures. This is Village-level wine has reached a terrific stage in its life to be consumed, yet there’s no rush, as this will easily hold until the end of the decade. If you’ve yet to experience what Vosne-Romanée is all about, this is an ideal bottle to begin the experience.

Domaine Arnoux-Lachaux 2011 Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Les Chaumes $139.99

This wine is a selection to throw in your cellar. The premier cru vineyard of Les Chaumes lies below the Grand Cru vineyard known as La Tache, one of the DRC Grand Cru wines mentioned above. Reds from Les Chaumes possess a bit more body compared to other Vosne-Romanée Premier Crus, but a little less elegance, which isn’t a bad thing if that’s the style of wine you prefer. The 2011s in general don’t possess the tannin and concentration of the 2009s or 2010s, but this wine makes up for it by having vibrant acidity. As always, though, top producers like Arnoux-Lachaux made phenomenal wines. The hallmark of a benchmark producer is the ability to make great wines in difficult vintages and this 2011 Les Chaumes demonstrates that in spades!

Expert Picks: Pousse d’Or and Bonneau du Martray

Two expert selections from Garrett Kowalsky

Garrett_8.6.14_72dpiMy oh my, how I love a big bottle of wine! Shall I list a few reasons why I adore these luxuriously sized bottles? The first and most obvious reason is that there is just simply more wine to love; it’s your favorite wine with twice as much to enjoy. The wine also tastes better; the oxygen-to-wine ratio is much lower, which leads to a slower and gentler aging process and results in the best possible outcome for drinking. And we must not forget how fun it is to walk into the party with a magnum in hand, or the thrill of the reveal when you show off this magnificent vessel to guests at your home. With this in mind, I chose two mags currently in IWM’s cellar that I think are must-haves wines.

Pousse d’Or Volnay 2011 Clos de la Bousse d’Or 1.5L $189.00

Hands down, Pousse d’Or is one of the top five producers in Beaune, and this domaine produces Volnay that’s so fine that you’d have trouble finding wines of similar caliber. This 42-acre estate can date its roots back to the eighteenth century, but its current incarnation dates back to 1964. This 2011 is medium weight and devastatingly elegant in its delivery with sweet spice across the nose and palate. Drink 2019 to 2035.

Bonneau du Martray 2009 Corton-Charlemagne 1.5L $359.99

Corton-Charlemagne is one of the finest wines in the world, and Bonneau du Martray must be considered one of the top three estates producing this sensational wine. Bonneau du Martray’s ’09 Corton-Charlemagne is fresh and exotic on the nose with an exceptionally rich and silky body. You would struggle to find a person on the planet who would fail to appreciate what is in this bottle. Drink now to 2025.

Inside IWM, May 4-7, 2015: Winning Hearts and Minds

A look back at the week that was

11188270_791290737606220_6106356872160521462_nWe began the week with Will Di Nunzio’s detailed recollection of one special night spent with eight vintage Biondi-Santi Brunello Riserva bottles, each more memorable than the next. We closed with a Mother’s Day piece that questioned “feminine” wines and suggested some powerful bottles. In between, Julia Punj offered another lesson in classic mixology with her take on the 20th Century, a perfect dessert cocktail. And John Camacho Vidal enjoyed a delicious under $20 Vermentino from Antinori’s Bolgheri estate.

Guided by her love for unique wines, Crystal Edgar expertly picked a pair of vintage beauties from Antonio Ferrari. Robin Kelley O’Connor saluted two great Burgundy makers, Michel Lafarge and Simon Bize, with his selections. And Justin Kowalsky looked at the “little brothers” of wines, Bourgogne and Rosso di Montalcino, selecting a pair of bottles that are delicious–and affordable.

IWM is pleased to be taking part in Tinto for TECHO fundraising wine dinner again this year–join us on May 28, 2015 for a very special evening of wine and food at the Four Seasons, and help raise money for this organization that provides social development programs in education, health, and housing to extreme poverty communities in 19 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean.

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