2014 Nuits-St Georges, Les Pruliers, 1er Cru, Domaine Jean Grivot, Burgundy
Neal Martin - 31/12/2015
About this WINE
Domaine Jean Grivot
Jean Grivot took over from his father, Gaston, in 1955. He handed the domaine on to son Étienne – married to Marielle Bize from Savigny – in the early 1980s. When Etienne Grivot took over, the house style was for gentle, graceful wines, perhaps a little weak in lesser vintages.
Étienne has since found his own voice, making a range of increasingly fine wines. Since the mid-2000s, he has reduced yields and fine-tuned vineyard and cellar work. The next generation – Mathilde and Hubert – are increasingly influential, working under their father’s experienced and wise guidance.
Nuits Saint Georges
Originally known as Nuits, or even Nuits-sous-Beaune, the town was happy to add the name of its finest vineyard, Les St Georges, in the 19th century. There are no Grands Crus, but many fine Premier Cru vineyards, the mayor of the time – Henri Gouges – preferring not to single out any vineyard for the highest status.The wines of Nuits-St Georges vary according to their exact provenance. Those of the hamlet of Prémeaux, considered to be part of Nuits-St Georges for viticultural purposes, are often on the lighter side.
The richest and most sought-after are those just south of Nuits-St Georges such as Les Vaucrains, Les Cailles and Les St Georges itself. The third sector, including Les Murgers, Les Damodes and Les Boudots are at the Vosne-Romanée end of the village, and demonstrate some of the extra finesse associated with Vosne.
Several domaines (Gouges, Rion, Arlot) now produce a white Nuits-St Georges from Pinot Blanc or Chardonnay.
- 175 hectares of village Nuits-St Georges
- 143 hectares of Premier Cru vineyards (20 in all). Best vineyards include Les St Georges, and Clos des Argillières and Clos de la Maréchale in Prémeaux
- Recommended producers: Gouges, Rion, Liger Belair, Potel
- Recommended restaurant : La Cabotte (small but stylish)
Pinot Noir is probably the most frustrating, and at times infuriating, wine grape in the world. However when it is successful, it can produce some of the most sublime wines known to man. This thin-skinned grape which grows in small, tight bunches performs well on well-drained, deepish limestone based subsoils as are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or.
Pinot Noir is more susceptible than other varieties to over cropping - concentration and varietal character disappear rapidly if yields are excessive and yields as little as 25hl/ha are the norm for some climats of the Côte d`Or.
Because of the thinness of the skins, Pinot Noir wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However the best wines have grip, complexity and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, redolent with freshly crushed raspberries, cherries and redcurrants. When mature, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouth feel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey "sous-bois" nuances emerging.
The best examples are still found in Burgundy, although Pinot Noir`s key role in Champagne should not be forgotten. It is grown throughout the world with notable success in the Carneros and Russian River Valley districts of California, and the Martinborough and Central Otago regions of New Zealand.
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With a similar, noble, purple colour to Les Roncières, this has vibrant, dark red fruit rather than plums on the nose. Les Pruliers has greater density than Les Roncières, displaying real depth of fruit. It has a lovely finish, easy and charming but also magisterial.
Étienne Grivot reports better yields in 2014, about halfway between the miserable crops of the previous four vintages and what would count as a very good year. The grapes are de-stemmed but preserved fully intact using the newest model of destemmer. They were totally healthy in 2014 and Mathilde Grivot describes the wines as being accessible, fresh, yet still complex. We would add that they are – yet again – amongst the finest of the whole Côte.
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