2014 Pommard, Les Pézerolles, 1er Cru, Domaine A.-F. Gros, Burgundy
Neal Martin - 31/10/2017
About this WINE
Domaine A-F Gros
Anne-Françoise Gros, originally of Vosne-Romanée, is married to François Parent of Pommard, where they live, though their wines have been made in substantial premises in Beaune since 1998. Their joint living as wine-makers is ably assisted by their children Caroline (pictured) and Mathieu.
The domaine consists of Anne-Françoise’s share of Domaine Jean Gros, additional wines in and around Vosne-Romanée which she has bought or leased, and her husband’s share of Domaine Parent. He also offers wines under his own label, adorned with a black truffle. Her labels sport the outline of a female head, each one different according to the interpretation of the style of the appellation by Anne-Françoise and the artist.
There has been a sorting table since 2008, after which the grapes are destemmed but not crushed. The grapes are given a short cool maceration, then fermented with more pumping over than punching down, with the juice being concentrated by a similar machine to that used by Michel and Bernard Gros, if necessary.
Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director and author of the award-winning Inside Burgundy comprehensive handbook.
The most powerful red wines of the Côte de Beaune emanate from Pommard, where complex soils with a high proportion of iron-rich clay produce deep-coloured, relatively tannic wines. A Pommard that is ready to drink in its first few years is probably not going to be a great example of the appellation.Two vineyards stand out: the lower part of Les Rugiens, which has been mooted for promotion to Grand Cru status, and the five-hectare, walled Clos des Epéneaux, monopoly of Comte Armand.
- 212 hectares of village Pommard
- 125 hectares of Premier Cru vineyards (28 in all). The finest vineyards include Les Rugiens, Les Epénots (including Clos des Epéneaux) and Pézérolles
- Recommended producers: Comte Armand, de Montille, de Courcel, J-M Boillot
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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Tasted blind at the Burgfest 2014 tasting, the 2014 Pommard 1er Cru les Pzerolles from A-F Gros was a wine that was affected by hail, though when I tasted it from barrel I thought the wine had come through the trauma. However, in bottle it looks as if the new oak (80%) has won out over the fruit. It has a simple, oaky and rather dusty nose. The palate is dominated by dry tannin, very woody with a dusting of dark chocolate toward the finish. It tastes as if the fruit has receded away. Tasted September 2017.
Neal Martin - 31/10/2017
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