Essence of Gevrey-Chambertin

Alain Burguet was one of the very first producers I had the good fortune to visit in Burgundy. My chum Jeremy got the Oxford blind tasting team an appointment and promised us top-drawer but traditional Gevrey-Chambertin. He was spot on. The only unhappy memory that lingers from our visit was that M. Burguet had no wine to sell.

Recently, I owed new chum Richard B some wine and gave him a bottle of this – he told me it put hairs on his chest. I can see his point, but I am more taken with its scrumptiously beautiful fruit rather than its admittedly slightly rustic tannins. I am sure we would agree that this is a compelling expression of Pinot Noir and a jolly pleasing Gevrey villages.

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Gevrey-Chambertin ‘En Billard’ 2005, Alain Burguet

The ripe black cherry fruit and rich earthiness of this nose announce this as being very Gevrey, at least to me and I’ve seen the label so I know I’m right. There is no dallying around with new oak or alcohol levels of orotund character, this is just the fruit expressing where it was grown and as such the nose really tweaks my aesthetes. As I said, the tannins are not the most suavely polished, but they work very well with its ripe fruit. Anyway, don’t we want a bit of rigour to our Gevrey’s? Not every pleasure should be of easy virtue. That being said, the palate is not hard or awkward, just vigorous. Good acidity here as well, and an engagingly long finish for a village wine with the lovely cherry fruit really lasting. Yeah, this is good stuff; not just typical but also a really enjoyable drink. No rush to pop your bottles, there is plenty of vibrancy here that will certainly last.

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