Valiant Effort in a Tough Vintage for Burgundy

Today’s Story: Domaine Jean Grivot

I wrote about Domaine Jean Grivot back in March when I reviewed the 2016 Nuits-St-Georges Les Charmois, though I figured it could be fun checking in on another bottling as one of my Thanksgiving wines.

Domaine Jean Grivot is a relatively small family owned and operated Burgundian estate now under guide of the fifth generation Étienne Grivot, his wife Marielle, and their children Mathilde and Hubert. Étienne took over the domaine from his father Jean Grivot in 1987, and Jean had taken over from his father following his death in 1955. The majority of the domaine’s vineyards are located in Vosne-Romanée, however over time their growth to 15.5 hectares stretches across 22 appellations in additional villages of Vougeot, Chambolle-Musigny, and Nuits-Saint-Georges. The domaine’s holdings include notable Grand Cru vineyards in Clos de Vougeot, Echézeaux, and Richebourg, as well as 8 Premier Crus including Les Beaux Monts and Suchots in Vosne-Romanée. Their vineyards are farmed organically founded in a desire for minimal impact on the environment and removal of chemicals in the vineyards. In Richebourg, Echézeaux, Beau Monts, and Suchots, the domaine even uses a horse to plough the vineyards in an effort to minimize impact on the soil. Harvest is accomplished by hand and the grapes are 95-100% destemmed before beginning fermentation using only natural yeasts. Unlike other winemakers in Burgundy, Grivot does not like punch downs before fermentation begins but rather pumps over the wines after fermentation is complete and before they spend 15 months in barrels.

Today’s Wine: 2011 Nuits-St-Georges 1er Cru Aux Boudots

100% Pinot Noir; 13% ABV

The 2011 Aux Boudots is translucent pale to medium ruby in color. I let this slow ox for about 30-45 minutes before further air time in the glass, helping the wine express aromas of black cherry, dried cranberry, dried tobacco leaf, dry tilled earth, underbrush, gravel, and green pepper. Once in the mouth, this showcases notes of black raspberry, black cherry, spiced plum, tobacco, leather, forest floor, rocky mineral, pepper, and dried green herbs. This is a delightful wine from a difficult vintage, and it is medium-bodied with medium acidity, medium (-) dusty tannins, and a medium (+) length finish.

Price: $200 (can find it closer to $160 in some locations). While no doubt a wonderful bottle of wine, I struggle to call this great “value” because while Burgundy prices have gone through the roof lately there are still some great options around this price from stronger vintages. If you can find it closer to $160, then by all means give it a try.

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