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A rich, ripe and concentrated white Burgundy: full and broad yet also offering excellent, food-friendly ‘grip’ on the palate.
Product Code: BU68591
View all products by Domaine Coche-Bizouard
This family-run domain, based in Meursault, was created by Julien Coche in 1940 and began as just one hectare of vines. His son Alain took over from him and earned a high reputation from the vintages he produced in the 1980s and 1990s, and Alain’s own son Fabien has been involved since 1995 and now oversees the day-to-day running of the domaine.The family now has 12 hectares, located not only in Meursault but also Pommard, Auxey-Duresses, Monthélie, Saint-Romain, Saint-Aubin and Puligny-Montrachet. Impressively, 60% of the vines are over 60 years old. The vines are trained to a mix of guyot simple and cordon de royat.The vines are planted on a mixture of limestone, clay and marl, with chalkier soils found on Meursault’s east-facing hillsides. No herbicides have been used since 2004, and rye grass is planted in between each row of vines to encourage higher competition.The new winery, just over the railway line from the vines, was completed in 2007, and contains state of the art machinery such as a pneumatic press. The white grapes are whole-bunch pressed, cold settled, and fermented and matured in barrels for about 12 months, before ageing for a further period of six months in stainless-steel tanks, and are bottled 18 months after the vintage. Barrel size ranges from 228 to 500 litres. While some reds are also produced (which age for a year in barrels, producing fruity wines for relatively early drinking), it is the whites that have given this domaine its reputation – particularly the four village Meursaults which come from separate lieux-dits. The one we usually buy is L’Ormeau, which comes from early-ripening grapes planted on warm gravel soils just behind Alain’s house.The two Meursault premier crus produced – Les Charmes and La Goutte d’Or - come from 75 to 80 year old vines and are aged in 20% new oak, in contrast to the 15% new oak used to mature the village wines.
The Côte de Beaune runs from Ladoix-Serrigny in the north to Cheilly lè Maranges in the south, on the southern escarpment of the Côte d’Or. Beaune is the town at its heart. The most famous wines of the area are white, but many excellent reds are produced. The soils of the area are predominantly mixtures of clay and limestone of various types, which is excellent for drainage but also retention of water. The hillsides here, split and riven by streams and side-valleys, provide a number of meso- and microclimates as well as various aspects ranging from east-facing to south and south-west facing. The best sites are neither at the top or the bottom of these slopes where the soils are too impoverished or too fertile respectively. More generic wines are produced at the top and bottom of these slopes, with the Premiers Crus and Grand Crus in a band running along the upper middle. Soils with more limestone suit chardonnay more than pinot, hence the number of famous white burgundies produced here.The climate here is semi-continental, though northerly winds can temper a hot summer while warmer winds from the south can bring warmth. Westerly winds that ultimately originate in the Atlantic can bring rain but at its worst may deliver devastating hail in incredibly localised storms. There is a degree of unpredictability about vintages in Burgundy.Pinot noir and chardonnay are the two permitted grapes of any significance, though Aligoté is grown occasionally for crisp, mouth-watering whites that are often used to make kir, and some generic Bourgogne or Crémant can be made with pinot blanc, pinot gris and beurrot can be made. The appellations to be found in the Côte de Beaune are as follows: Ladoix, Pernand-Vergelesses, Aloxe-Corton , Corton, Corton-Charlemagne, Chorey-lès-Beaune, Savigny-lès Beaune, Beaune, Pommard, Volnay, Monthélie, Auxey-Duresses, Saint-Romain, Meursault, Saint-Aubin, Puligny-Montrachet, Chassagne-Montrachet, Santenay and Maranges Côte de Beaune-Villages and Bourgogne-Hautes Côtes de Beaune are also made. The former is solely for red wines and the latter includes some whites as well. Both are mostly from vineyards on the top of the escarpment and some represent good value for early drinking Burgundy.Côte de Beaune wines are generally lighter than those from the Côte de Nuits. Beaunes are soft and round, Volnays fine and silky. Pommards are the exception: due to more clay in the soil, they can be notably tannic and in need of considerable bottle age. The greatest of all white Burgundies, Le Montrachet, is made here between Chassagne and Puligny.
" Quite a bit of sulphite on opening. The next day these were gone and the nose and taste were both pleasant but rather lightweight - more "small and elegant" than "rich, ripe and concentrated". Certainly not £28 worth."
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