Domaine Armand Rousseau Père et Fils
Gevrey-Chambertin “Clos St. Jacques” ♥
1er Cru Red 750 ml
Tasted: Jan 10, 2020
Note: from a 2.21 ha parcel raised in 80% new wood
Producer note: Like most of her colleagues, Eric Rousseau’s daughter Cyrielle briefly described the 2018 growing season as “one that was so hot and dry that we are frankly amazed that the wines have turned out to be as fresh and transparent to the underlying terroir as they are because neither I nor my dad expected it. I would note that we have never dropped so much fruit in the form of a green harvest as we did in 2018. Moreover, notwithstanding how warm the summer was, I don’t see how the fruit was ever going to attain sufficient phenolic maturity without dropping at least some fruit. Adequate sugar ripeness would have been no problem but fully mature phenolic ripeness, no. We picked from the 1st to the 9th of September and because the fruit was so clean, we were basically able to pick around 2 ha per day. Even with all the fruit we dropped, yields were still good though not high with potential alcohols that ranged from 13 to 13.5% so nothing was chaptalized. We had no particular problems with the either fermentation and overall, 2018 has turned out to be a pleasant surprise.” As to the domaine 2017s, four of which are revisited below, were bottled in April 2019. As I reported previously, the domaine is now using bottles where the bottom of it is embossed with the name of the domaine. (Frederick Wildman, www.frederickwildman.com, NY, USA; Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, Fields, Morris & Verdin, www.fmvwines.com The Wine Society, www.thewinesociety.com, Tanners Wine, www.tanners-wines.co.uk, Laytons, www.laytons.co.uk, The Rare & Fine Wine Company Limited, www.therareandfinewinecompany.com and Justerini & Brooks, www.justerini.com, all UK; Altaya Wines, www.altayawines.com, Hong Kong).
Tasting note: Here the wood treatment is equally subtle on the restrained nose that displays fresh and cool aromas of red currant, wet stone, tea and forest floor. Like the Ruchottes the mouthfeel of the middle weight flavors is quite sleek and ultra-intense while flashing plenty of minerality on the strikingly well-detailed finish that displays focused power and superb length. This is an exercise in harmony and grace and while it should be approachable after only 6 to 8 years, it should age effortlessly for several decades.