2018 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits Saint Georges 1er Cru Les Pruliers
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Domaine Henri Gouges
Nuits St. Georges “Les Pruliers”
1er Cru Red barrel
Tasted: Jan 10, 2020
Note: a 1.9 ha parcel with a mix of 80% 75+ year old vines and the remainder of 15 to 20 year old vines
Producer note: Grégory Gouges described the 2018 growing season as one where “the conditions were dry, hot and mostly clement though we did have some early season mildew and then two hailstorms, both of which hit Les St. Georges, Vaucrains and Les Chênes Carteaux. The first storm did a lot of damage though it was early enough where the damaged berries were able to dry out and eventually fall off without our intervention. The second incident though occurred right before véraison and those by contrast did not have enough time to dry out and fall off. We lost close to 50% of the potential crop in the three vineyards that I cited so the two storms were expensive! Moreover at harvest time, which for us began on the 8th of September, we picked until noon and then I instructed each picker to take a case of hail-affected fruit and sort it berry by berry. To provide an idea, our objective in say Les St. Georges is to obtain between 25 and 30 hl/ha whereas in 2018 we had only 20 hl/ha. In our other vineyards yields were abundant as they averaged between 38 and 40 hl/ha. It’s important in this business to view your glass as half full because while 20 hl/ha isn’t a whole lot, it beats by a lot the 9 hl/ha we realized in 2016 so 20 hl/ha isn’t a complete catastrophe. If there was a positive in any of this is that the two storms brought a lot of water which most other communes had very little, or like Marsannay, none at all. Potential alcohols were high if not ridiculous at between 13.5 and 14.5% and we didn’t have any problems to speak of with the vinifications. As to the wines, they have surprised me thus far in the sense that they keep changing and to my mind improving from month to month. They’re perhaps too ripe to be classic but I think that they will provide much pleasure over a long period of time.” Gouges also noted that the four 2018s were bottled in September 2019. (Vineyard Brands, www.vineyardbrands.com, AL, USA; O.W. Loeb, www.owloeb.com, Howard Ripley, www.howardripley.com, Avery’s Wine Merchants, www.averys.com, Flint Wines, www.flintwines.com, Tanners Wine, www.tanners-wines.co.uk, Laytons, www.laytons.co.uk, Justerini & Brooks, www.justerinis.com and Charles Taylor Wines, www.charlestaylorwines.com all UK; Wein & Vin, www.weinvin.com, Singapore; Pearl of Burgundy, www.pearlofburgundy.com, Hong Kong and Macau; SAQ, www.saq.com, Montreal, Canada; Domaine Wine Shippers, www.domainewineshippers.com.au, VIC, Australia; Sarment Hong Kong, www.sarment.com, Hong Kong).
Tasting note: Here too there is enough wood to point out framing the very ripe and slightly jammy aromas of poached plum and cassis with background nuances of forest floor and pungent earth. There is impressive density and power to the sappy and exceptionally rich broad-shouldered flavors that terminate in a mocha and bitter cherry pit-inflected finish that is once again noticeably warm.