Firstly, I would like to start off by thanking James Leather for providing this bottle for review – thank you James, that was very kind of you. James would like to thank James Bercovici of The Big Red Wine Company for selling him a stash.
Givry, do you know where it is? Do you associate that name with quality Burgundy? I do! Every year I gleefully await a taste of Domaine Joblet’s Givry Premier Cru Clos de la Servoisine and feel bloody marvellous when I have had one.
Domaine Joblot is easily a standout producer in a relatively poorly-known appellation in Burgundy, and his Clos de la Servoisine is a standout in a brilliant range of Pinots produced from four Premier Crus located a natural amphitheatre of limestone just outside the village.
These wines are bundles of fun in their youth, but certainly have what they need, where they need it to age. They will age and improve for an impressively long time in good vintages transferred to good cellars.
In 2016 M. Joblot decided to blend a proportion of his four Premier Crus into one wine: L’Empriente. He lavished love on that blend: it receiving an upbringing of 14 months in three-quarters new Francois Freres barriques, for example. But is the wine greater for being a blend of separately noble components? Let us get drinking!
Givry Premier Cru L’Empriente 2016, Domaine Joblot
Wow, the energy and vivacity of this wine’s nose are enthralling! It amply demonstrates the beauty, power and total delicious pleasure-value that young Pinot Noir can explode with. Some Burgundian 2016s are beginning to shut-down, but this pleasure pussycat is wildly attractive and up for a throbbingly hilarious time.
There is a huge abundance of fruit on the nose. Not exactly like the fruit from most Cote d’Or wines, but delicious, nonetheless. It is slightly brambly and blackberry-like. Indeed, as I first sniffed this I thought that if it were 2% more alcoholic (its alcohol-level is harmonious and quite satisfactory) you might start your blind tasting along the lines of “Erm… Zinfandel… Ridge Wines… Erm… Lytton Springs..?”, and feel god-damned smug about such a brilliant wild stab in the dark just from its nose.
However, it is no monster of excess like Zinfandel, it just has a similar fruit tone. It does have power, but it is a wonderfully framed, restrained power. The power of Burgundian quality! Even in this distant outpost, the quality of Burgundian complexity, élan and god-damned brilliance fills your nose with every sniff.
That muy expensivo oak treatment does show on the nose, there is a nice oaky-spiciness there. Yet it is a Burgundian quality of class and style that the oak is not overbearing and it is just a subtle seasoning in the complex melange of the nose.
I am not entirely gruntled with these blends of multiple Premier Crus, they are all supposed to show their own aspect of the villages’ qualities after all. One can speculate, possibly even uncharitably, about why Joblot blended a proportion of their Premier Crus in 2016. Whatever the reason, it has produced a bleeding brilliant wine.
It so much fun, it is so involute with intriguing, besotting aromas, it is so bloody good! If you need a young Burgundian Pinot to blow your socks off with pure quality that is not expensive as diamonds, then you want to be heading to The Big Red Wine Company’s website now to score some of this to pop immediately on arrival!
I think I’ll have a taste now… Yeah, yeah, that is exceptionally high-quality young Joblot, really exceptionally high-quality young Burgundy. The tannins as reassuring in their solidity if you are planning to age this, but right now they give it a structure that pulses with life and an awful lot of fun!
The acidic edge also helps maintain the impressively vivacious character to the structure. It is not something that makes you think it’ll burn a hole right through your guts in 15 years, though; perfect, perfect balance!
The structure is gloriously giving now and will ease it through a long life. So will the abundant fruit. Again, it seems a bit more brambly than Cote d’Or wines usually seem to be, but it is no distant outlier in terms of Pinot fruit. It is lovely, energetic, hugely enjoyable fruit that will last and last when it ages.
Yes, I know quality Pinots of this calibre usually shut down for several years (you’ve got maybe up to a year to commit infanticide with this spritely, confident number, though), but that fruit will always remain and blossom when it begins to reach maturity and give it a viscerally pleasurable character later in life.
The lovely spice of the oak is detectable when I chew it around. It does not overwhelm the fruit or dominate the structure of this wine that is very finely balanced for a wine of such joyous fun-value. On the finish there is the character I appreciate more and more from Pinot wines, be they red or fizzy, the crisp savoury grip on the finish that is a consequence of being grown in limestone vineyards. Must be because I am now a confirmed Hampshire piggy…
That savoury character spins a complex and long finish with the fruit also vying for attention. This is undoubtedly a fabulous wine. I do not always mention where I procure my bottles from, but I was asked to in this case and I am very happy to do so. This is a great wine at a highly reasonable price, and whether you want a fun, fine young Burgundy to enjoy now, or one to put away for 10-15 years I cannot recommend a better bargain or (since I missed the en primeur tastings because I was a bit on the hatstand-side of the sanity spectrum) many more simply better 2016 Burgundies than this at all – I just have not tried many things at this point. This is definitely a ‘buy as a matter of aesthetic urgency’-wine.
Whatever the reason Domain Joblot decided to blend a proportion of their Premier Crus, it is an undoubted success – the wine is deeply lovely. I admit I also missed out on tasting the 2015 Joblot wines, that should have been great successes, but I do not think I have ever had a bottle of Joblot that I have thought as qualitatively good or simply as hugely enjoyable as this – many thanks James (and James), what a great experience you’ve given The Editor and me!
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