Domaine Perrot-Minot 1er cru La Richemone, 'Cuvée Ultra', Vieilles Vignes, Nuits-Saint-Georges, Burgundy, France 2008

Domaine Perrot-Minot 1er cru La Richemone, &

Domaine Perrot-Minot 1er cru La Richemone, 'Cuvée Ultra', Vieilles Vignes, Nuits-Saint-Georges, Burgundy, France 2008

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Wine Type
red wine
pinot noir

Notes on the wine from Wine Advocate: 

The Perrot-Minot 2008 Nuits-St.-Georges La Richemone Vieilles Vignes delivers scents and flavors of tart but ripe blackberry, Maine blueberry, machine oil, and licorice. Firmly tannic but also glycerin-rich and brightly juicy, and with low-toned suggestions of beef marrow and dark chocolate, this formidable Pinot doesn’t become too austere even when its finish turns toward crushed stone, cherry pit, and pencil lead. In fact, it’s positively vibratory in its reverberative fruit-mineral-herb interplay that will leave your mouth wrung-out. I would plan to chart this wine’s coarse fearlessly for 15 or more years, but don’t look to it for elegance or charm. (This is another site from which Perrot-Minot has on occasion bottled the oldest vines separately as an “Ultra” cuvee, but not this year.)


Christophe Perrot-Minot pursued to extremes in 2008 the fanatic selectivity on which he prides himself, though he would have been happy had that not been necessary. He claims this triage was almost entirely for the removal of under-ripe, not of botrytis-infected, berries. (And yields from these – as the labels remind us – universally old vines are always extremely low even before fruit hits the estate’s two sorting tables.) The concentrated, lavishly ripe but densely-structured style associated with this domaine is tempered by the relatively low alcohol (wines finished – after light chaptalization – in the upper 12s or low 13s) and efficacious acidity of the 2008 vintage, as well as by a relatively gentle extraction that he reports was forced on him by fruit whose virtues could easily have been spoiled by pigeage. Given the way these wines turned out, I, for one, am very glad no attempt was made to punch the musts into further extractive submission! Perrot-Minot opines that many 2008s were permanently stunted by excess sulfuring – which exacerbated the lateness of malo-lactic transformation – and by too little time between the end of malo and bottling, ending up “square” (he used the English word) and “lacking in fat. There was also a danger,” he acknowledged, “that one could end up with wines too concentrated, or that lack purity of aroma and don’t express their terroir.” And in another response to the inherent intensity but also limitations of the fruit, new wood this year was held to a maximum of 40%. Most of the 2008s had been bottled recently when I tasted them in April, but some as early as January. (For details on many of the Perrot-Minot vineyard sites and old vines, consult my reports in issues 170 and 186. I did not have time, unfortunately, to taste any of the 2007s from this estate except a very early stage.)

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