Red, Ready, but will improve

2012 Monthélie, Les Duresses, 1er Cru, Domaine Coche-Bizouard

2012 Monthélie, Les Duresses, 1er Cru, Domaine Coche-Bizouard

Red | Ready, but will improve | Domaine Coche-Bizouard | Code:  25002 | 2012 | France > Burgundy > Cote de Beaune > Monthelie | Pinot Noir | Medium-Full Bodied, Dry | 13.5 % alcohol

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The Producer

Domaine Coche-Bizouard

Domaine Coche-Bizouard

The Coche name is well-known in Meursault, principally because of the renowned Jean-François Coche-Dury. Less well-known but certainly not to be missed is this domaine, established in 1940 and run by cousin-once-removed, Fabien Coche. As one would expect, he has excellent vineyard holdings principally in Meursault, Monthélie and Auxey-Duresses, and has supplemented these with purchased grapes from trusted sources. The harvesting is generally done later than other vignerons in the area, sometimes by as much as a week. The reds are not de-stemmed, and both the whites and reds undergo a very long, slow fermentation. The wines are then put into barriques – of which, as a general rule, 25 percent are new – for 18 to 20 months. Coche's wines are highly individual in style – they are designed to be aged for at least five to 10 years but will subsequently develop into some of the most well-balanced, beautifully structured wines of each appellation. You may notice that some of the wines, especially the Meursaults, carry the name Coche-Bizouard (rather than Domaine Fabien Coche); this is Fabien’s own-label négociant range. We have been buying in these wines since the early 1980s, offering as they do consistently good, affordable and classically styled Meursault.

The Grape

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir

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.

The Region

Monthelie

A small village nestling in a valley behind Meursault and Volnay, Monthelie produces mostly red wines, mini-Volnays with appealing fruit but sometimes a rustic edge, and a small amount of white wine. The best wines come from the steep slopes above the village, such as Les Duresses.

  • 109 hectares of village Monthelie.
  • 31 hectares of premier cru vineyards (11 in all). Best vineyard is Les Duresses.
  • Recommended Producer:  Lafon

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