Gevrey-Chambertin “Aux Combottes”
1er Cru Red 750 ml
Tasted: Apr 01, 2009
Producer note: Lalou Bize-Leroy calls 2007 a vintage where “we began picking quite early, at least by normal standards, which is to say on the 28th of August and continued through to the 13th of September. We have very low yields and this enabled the fruit to ripen fully even with a precocious harvest. As always, we did a thorough triage but wound up throwing out relatively little as the only real concern was a certain quantity of unripe berries. Sugars were very good at between 13 and 13.5% and we chaptalized very little. Our net yields were right around 20 hl/ha, which is about the same as the 19 to 20 that we had in 2006 though certainly more than the 15 that we obtained in 2005.” Mme Bize, who is usually willing, if only reluctantly, to offer a comparison with older vintages demurred when I asked what other vintages might reasonably compare to 2007, observing simply that “it’s different.” I found the Leroy 2007 to be among the very best wines of the vintage and the low yields definitely allowed the phenolics to reach a high level of ripeness. 2007, like 2006, is among the more elegant vintages that I have experienced chez Leroy among recent vintages. As I observed last year, those readers who sometimes find the Leroy wines to lack elegance because they are so concentrated, then both the ’06s and the ’07s should appeal more because they have impressive elegance and display more finesse than certain other, more concentrated, recent vintages, most notably 2005. The Leroy ’07s were bottled in December, 2008. (Martine’s Wines, www.martineswines.com, Novato, CA; Justerini & Brooks, www.justerini.com, John Armit, www.armit.co.uk, Howard Ripley, www.howardripley.com, and Lay & Wheeler, www.laywheeler.com, all UK).
Tasting note: A more discreet and naturally cooler nose of extract of red pinot and blue berry fruit that is also spicy and elegant but here the coolness of the vineyard comes into play in the form of a certain reserve, particularly on the delicious and mineral suffused medium plus weight flavors that possess superb focus and really lovely detail on the layered, wonderfully complex and tautly muscular finish that goes on and on. An impressive Combottes.