About this WINE
Domaine Jean Taupenot-Merme
The domaine is now run by Romain Taupenot, aided by his sister Virginie; they are the seventh generation of Côte de Nuits-based Taupenots, though the domaine also includes, since 2003, the vineyards of the St-Romain branch of the family. Though not certified, the domaine has been organic since 2002.
This is a rare domaine which differentiates between holdings in Charmes- and Mazoyères-Chambertin. Their cousins across the road at Domaine Perrot-Minot do so as well. The Taupenots also own a tiny patch of Clos des Lambrays, though there is not enough for it to be seen commercially in any significant way.
The grapes are sorted on a table de tri, completely destemmed and then given a cool soak at 10ºC/50ºF, fermented for seven to nine days then maintained in the vat at 29ºC/84ºF for a few more days to manage the tannins. The wines then spend 12 to 14 months in barrel without racking until they are assembled in tank for bottling. Several coopers are used, with 30 per cent new wood for the village wines, 40 per cent for the premiers crus and 50 per cent for the grands crus.
Quality has been steadily improving here and Romain is evidently keen to continue to fine-tune the process. The wines show their vineyard characters well, backed by a relatively firm structure.
Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director and author of the award-winning Inside Burgundy comprehensive handbook.
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.