Oddly prickly Chambolle

Sometimes in the past I have found Domaine Bruno Clair wines to have a suggestion of dirtiness about them. I think this has only happened with about five wines out of the fifty-odd I’ve tried so even though the worry tweaks my sensitive parts I still feel safe enough buying from him. I thought a 2002 Chambolle would fortify and cheer me one night when sleep decided that it had just about enough of me for the time being.

These ‘deuxieme cru’ wines can sometimes show a very distinct vineyard character – Jean-Marc Roulot’s Meursaults being perhaps the prime example. However, I often get the feeling that with a lot of producers the wines are not of singular enough character and they are just trying to milk a bit of extra cash from not amazingly unique vineyards.

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Chambolle Musigny ‘Les Veroilles’ 2002, Domaine Bruno Clair

For those who are interested in this kind of thing, it is rather pale in colour. Doesn’t really tell you a scintilla of information about how it is going to taste, of course, but some people get all worked up about colour. It really does smell of Chambolle, though, all that pretty fruit, refinement and elegance. I’d say it is not the most complex of noses, but it is unequivocally a decidedly attractive set of aromas for a village wine. Sticking your nose in this is fun! The palate also has plenty of lovely fruit but absolute bitch loads of really spiky acidity which is so immoderate in its intensity the palate ultimately lacks harmony and categorically makes this taste far from the alluring little charmer the nose promised. I can just about manage to taste over that harshness and the tannins are pretty good and there is some length, but where is the love, the lust and the lubricity? Nowhere in this wine. I would have expected riper charms from a 2002 that would be beginning to show in a most delightful manner, but tasting this is too much of a trial by acid. If you need to make a mouth ulcer ignite your mind with pain this would be a great thing to be swilling around your mouth, but if you want a properly beezer bottle of pretty, pleasure-suffused Chambolle this will just leave you dispirited.