Response to white Burgundy

By Jesse on March 28, 2008

So you’ll recall that last week, we were so inundated with $10 bills (and, correspondingly, so short on bottles) that we had to send Joe down to the store with some of our funds to buy more wine. In anticipation of that eventuality, I suppose, everyone and their mother brought a bottle last night. We managed to enjoy very thorough discourse on at least seven of them before the proceedings descended into utter mayhem.

Jason, Noah, Sasha and Jordan split three bottles between them — fittingly for Burgundy night, as their system seems straight out of the Napoleonic Code. Our first bottle was their $18 offering, the 2006 William Fevre Champs Royaux Chablis. Nice peach and mineral notes on the nose gave way to a tart palate of lemon and citrus, with some briny seawater character making an appearance. The tartness on the back end was a little much for some of the Winos.

New member Allison delivered us a $10 Chablis from TJ’s, the recognizable 2006 Blason de Bourgogne. The nose shared characteristics with the previous entry; lemon zest and green apple were prevalent. The pal, however, was described as “flabby” by several Winos: no acid, no backbone, no fun. To me, it tasted like when you order a Gin and Tonic, drink half of it, and then forget about it, and then you return twenty minutes later and take a sip: watered down juniper notes mingle with the lime to offer a slightly unpleasant but nominally refreshing beverage. And it still intoxicates, so… hey.

Newbie Mollie served us the 2005 Domaine Joelle Vrignaud Premier Cru Chablis retailing in the $30 range. Made with grapes from the Fourchaume vineyard, this little number offered us a nose parade of slate, charcoal, lavender, and vanilla (Mollie got some herbaceousness as well). The pal was crisp and balanced, serving up some pronounced white pepper notes and good acid.

We peaced the Chablis and headed south to Macon, where newbie Sarah threw down her own gauntlet with the 2002 Domaine du Bongran Viré Clessé, an interesting late-harvest Chard bearing the pigmentation of a Muscat Canelli. There was initial funk on the nose, which then dissipated — but which then shortly made a triumphant return, prompting the ebullient Jordan to dub it “the Phantom Funk,” a name which met with universal approval. Notes of deviled eggs and paprika were suggested (and objected to by newbie Jeremy), but honey seemed perceptible to all. The palate was nicely-balanced, with medium body, notes of lemon and vanilla, and a grapefruit finish. Andrew admired the malolactic. Also, this wine sparked a fierce bone dry/off-dry debate, and I not only acknowledged the difference of opinion, but embraced it as well.

My bottle was the 2005 Domaine Jean-Pierre Seve Pouilly-Fuisse “Terroir” for $25. A positive nose of clementine and creamy butter notes prepared us for a nicely-balanced palate of lemon and vanilla, and some interesting bread or sourdough suggestions as well. Overall, a great balance between the acid and the malolactic fermentation.

The second bottle from the “frugal foursome” was the 2006 Nicolas Maillet Macon Verzé for $20. A bountiful nose of honeysuckle floral notes and some nice cream unfortunately fled quickly. The palate prompted the observation that this was the first white Burgundy we’d tried that approached the tropical fruit flavors that we’re not supposed to be tasting in old world Chards, so that was an interesting exploration.

Andrew brought us a $15 bottle from K&L, namely the 2005 Domaine de la Croix Senaillet, Saint-Véran. Interesting butter and lime components on the nose. The pal offered us some spice (Matt claimed season salt from Lowry’s steakhouse). Jason called “sweetness” and found himself up against the world, save Brian.

At this point it became impossible to tell one newbie from the other, much less one wine from the other. Our generous hostess Kristen offered up a veritable banquet of food pairings and we consumed the remaining eight bottles with the requisite late-meeting abandon.


  1. I swear to god Jesse if you abbreviate “palette” with “pal” one more time…*shakes fist*

    Comment by Andrew Lang — March 29, 2008 @ 4:09 pm

  2. Sorry… that’s what Gary Vaynerchuk does, and I’m trying to make him like me since I apparently have a man-crush.

    Comment by Jesse — March 29, 2008 @ 8:06 pm

  3. […] we also hold Euro-specific tastings, such as the Spain and Portugal survey at Vendome, or the white Burgundy tasting last month. We’re very interested in this stuff, and we’re benefitting from […]

    Pingback by Young Winos of LA » The Winos’ Tasting Series: bonus bottles from the Wine & Food Society dinner — April 23, 2008 @ 3:37 am

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