Clark Foyster Wines are a small operation; but the tireless work of Lance Foyster and Isabelle Clark has secured them a portfolio that would make any serious wine lover drool uncontrollably. For the last few years they have been exclusive importers of Domaine Confuron-Gindre. By arse, they have scored one of the very best Vosne-Romanee producers for their portfolio. Mercifully, they do not gouge the customer with the prices of this delicious Domaine – they never charge unreasonable amounts for any of the wines they sell.
Confuron-Gindre make red wines across the spectrum, from a libidinously fruity Bourgogne Rouge via three village wines and three Vosne Premier Crus to a beguilingly involute, crazily complex, supremely sapid Echezeaux Grand Cru. Every wine of theirs has made me writhe and groan due to the style, class and god-damned drinkability of them.
This is a producer to drop your sponds on now. At some point the corpus of wine drinkers and traders are going to look in Confuron-Gindre’s direction and demand to know why the hell they were not told about this. Availability will reduce and, if you find any, prices will be (Swedish construction) shit-terrifying. Really, seriously now, buy some Confuron-Genderbender whilst you still stand a chance of getting allocated some by Clark Foyster Wines.
Before the note, a word about the 2014 vintage. This is a charming, delicious vintage to be enjoyed with an awful lot of pleasure whilst, with a few exceptions, they are still young. Those producers who extracted their grapes until the pips squeaked in order to have a severe and age-worthy (ha ha ha!) have made wines unsympathetic to the style of the vintage.
I vigorously disapprove of 2014s made in this style and I do not think they will mature successfully. I am willing to name producers who did this and you should avoid buying them. Since I am about to review a Vosne-Romanee we can stick to that village. I feel people would be wrong to contradict me when I say the wines from Grivot and Sylvain Cathiard’s son (yes, I have forgotten his name) are massive failures of train crash proportions and in no way exhibit the uninhibited joy of 2014 red Burgundy.
Now some people will claim that one of the characters of great wine is that it should be able to age or, even more insanely (I know a lot about insanity), that they do not like young Burgundy! It sounds unbelievable, but some people really claim that they do not like young Burgundy.
They say they do not like wine charged with youthful exuberance, suffused with delicious characters of fresh fruit that wantonly explodes in their mouth and stimulates all the receptors in their noses and tongues that tell their brain that this is the kind of stuff they want in their diet and please can they have more. It could be that they have malfunctioning taste and smell receptors, they could be damaged by some shockingly horrible event in their past that has warped their minds so much they feel they do not deserve to enjoy themselves too much, or they are bloody minded sods who (are lucky enough to) have cellars packed with old wine and they insist that just because they own it, it has to be best. These people should avoid buying quality 2014s (with a few exceptions) because the quality of the vintage demands to be relished when it is throbbing with vivacity. The note!
Vosne-Romanee Premier Cru les Brulees 2014, Domaine Confuron-Gindre
One sniff of this and you know it comes from the extra-special cream teat of the cow of profound pleasure. It is wonderfully scented with powerful, exotic aromas that really do show that the limits of pleasure are yet to be defined or reached.
The alcohol is at a sensible, unnoticeable level, there is no 200% new oak twattery, this just shows the undiluted delight of Pinot grown in a privileged location. It is amazingly joyous and incredibly attractive. It goes beyond “tits out for the boys” – it is tits and bums out for everyone everywhere!
The fruit is mainly perfectly ripe blackberries, engorged with juice ready for you to bite into. There are also hints of exotic flowers and a touch of juicily ripe black plums.
However, the basic message I want to express clearly is that this nose is very close to the Platonic ideal of loveliness. The only thing I can think of that is lovelier than this nose, and I freely admit this is a personal thing, is The Editor – but I rarely sniff and I would not know how to drink him.
Ok, there are two things better than the nose of this Vosne, The Editor and the palate. Words almost defy me when faced with such vivacious desirability. I’ll go the technical route…
The tannins are extremely soft and silky, there has been minimal extraction of them by the Confuron-Genderbender team and I think this is an excellent choice to have made in a vintage that commands youthful hedonism. The acidity is not high, but keeps the fruit and tannin from just being a splurge on your palate. If there is new wood used for this wine I am buggered if I can detect it. No alcohol burn either. It does do that grippy thing on the finish that I associate with wines grown on limestone soil.
If we take the lascivious, mouth-filling fruit as delicious, complex, stylish, etc. There are other characteristics that I love. It has a slightly savoury character that’s often in great wines. Finally, there is a slightly drying character on the finish, that I do not associate with the limestone grip or the tannins, that I find very pleasing.
We drink burgundy in the hope some bottles we buy will be this good. It was, by any definition of the word, a great wine. The Editor and I were smitten and it kept us giggling long after dinner.
And what dinner could be great enough to match this fine, fine wine? A roast shoulder of Beechcroft Farm Oxford Sandy and Black pig with my extremely buttery baked potato mash. The pork was a delight and showed that the real reason a lot of people claim to dislike roast pork is because they buy shit pork. Buy from Beechcroft and you will be transported to piggy heaven!
That.Pork looks fantastic!
Really top meat from Beechcroft Farm, Lance. Pork (their delicious, delicious Oxford Sandy and Black pigs) is probably the best, but the beef and lamb are the cat’s arse too! They also sell in their farm shop some truly cracking chicken – tastes wonderful. The wine was pretty good… 😉
David, I do like young Burgundy while it is open and exuberant, who could not? but I love mature burgundy with a yearning and passion that I feel for nothing else vinous.
I have been thinking (an awful lot) about this wine and wondering if it might age really well. My conclusion seems to be, “I bet it will, it will be staggeringly delicious, but I will still be surprised by it!”. The only problem is I have so few wines to drink with my friends that I need to open most stuff I acquire, so all but my 50th birthday stash are fair game when I have to find something to drink. I will try, but I cannot promise, to open a bottle of this in your presence because, being a chap of taste and refinement, you’ll see the true wonder that young Burgundy can deliver. I won’t piss about here: this was one of the* most staggeringly delightful drinking experiences of my life. I won’t say anything stupid like, “Easily in the top 100/1000/10,000”, because going down that path leads to the insanity of scoring wine, but this wine was titting wonderful. So, when can you make it around for lunch?
*’One of the’ is the lazy journalist’s get out line. They can use this to mark excess in any form, but don’t have to quantify exactly how much they mean. I know some things cannot be measured, but the scientist in me still screams out, “How much do you mean, you imprecise git?” when I hear it being used on the news.
Hi David, did you get my email the other week? I tried to come back here but there seemed to be something wrong, obviously solved now.