Friday, January 2, 2015

Domaine des Comtes LAFON -- 2013s from Cask

Domaine des Comtes LAFON (Meursault)

2013s Tasted from Cask

Dominique Lafon said that he began picking with the whites on September 25 and finished the harvest on October 9, with a two-day pause in between. He said that he didn’t have to do much triage and that the vibrating table de trie was very effective in taking out the dry berries (which resulted from hail damage). The whites suffered virtually no hail, only the reds. Still, the harvest for white (as well as red, of course) was very reduced because the grapes were small and had very little juice in them. The whites constitute about 50% of a normal harvest, the reds about 1/3 of a normal harvest.

Chaptalization was on the order of 0.5º. Malolactic fermentations were very slow, and indeed some had not finished when I visited on November 18.

As always, we start with the reds, which are entirely from destemmed grapes:

2013 Monthélie 1er Cru – Les Duresses
For what little has been produced, this is a minor gem with pure, delicate red cherry fruit and nice acidic support. (89-92)

2013 Volnay 1er Cru – Clos des Chênes
But two barrels (600 bottles) of this wine in 2013. The wine shows greater density than usual, although the customary laciness is there, along with pure raspberry fruit. (90-94)

2013 Volnay 1er Cru – Les Champans
Here there are but four barrels in 2013. The wine is fleshy, as is typical, with dark fruit and quite a bit of tannin. (90-93)

2013 Volnay 1er Cru – Santenots-du-Milieu
The nose here is smoky. The mouth is smooth, silky, and dense with red and dark cherry fruit and good structure. It is clearly a step above the others and should be outstanding. (92-95)

Next to the whites:

2013 Meursault
The Meursault shows good, spicy mouth with liveliness and length. The yields may be tiny, but the wine is a major success. (90-93)

2013 Meursault    Clos de la Barre
There was just a little hail here. At least a part of the wine was put in stainless steel to get it to finish malolactic fermentation and then put back in barrel. The wine is quite primary, but has plenty of substance. (90-93)

2013 Meursault   Désirée
The vines here are now about 7-8 years old. The nose is floral, the mouth dense, pure, and long, although the complexity of the Clos de la Barre (from much older vines) is not there. (87-91)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – Bouchères
This wine was only 75+% finished with its malolactic fermentation. It is full and lemony with finesse that often is not found in Bouchères. (90-93)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – La Goutte d’Or
The Goutte d’Or is light on the palate with good finesse and saltiness. It should make an excellent wine – keeping in mind that Goutte d’Or normally is a wine that needs some time in bottle to achieve its full potential. (91-94)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – Porouzots
The vines here are about 50 years-old. This is another wine that was transferred to stainless steel to promote the finishing of the malolactic fermentation, and then retransferred back to barrel. The wine is long and buttery with good finesse and excellent length. (91-94)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – Genevrières
The vines here are about 70 years old. The wine shows coconut aromas. The mouth is light and just short of sucrosity in texture. There’s plenty of density here. This an excellent wine, even if I have preferred Lafon’s Genevrières from other vintages. (92-95)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – Charmes
This wine is medium-weight with good structure, liveliness, and length. (92-95)

2013 Meursault 1er Cru – Perrières
This wine was racked in July and Dominique said that he was planning on bottling it soon. The wine shows finesse, purity, and depth, but is less tightly-wound than in some years. In short, an extremely good wine, but Perrières can be much greater than this. (92-95)

2013 Montrachet
Here is the one appellation where Lafon managed to get decent yields. Crop is 90% of normal. The wine is deep, pure, buttery, and complex – here we have an outstanding Montrachet, that is, a great, maybe very great, wine. (95-99)