Beaune 1er cru "Les Perrières" 2008

The Vintage

The weather in 2008 was capricious with a fairly mild winter followed by a spring and summer that were essentially cool and damp, slowing the maturation of the grapes and permitting the development of rot. Additionally, at the end of August, we worried when the meteorologists predicted another week of cold and rainy weather. Then, a miracle occurred. On September 13, "la Bise", which is a cool and dry north wind, arrived, clearing the sky of clouds. It blew for about three weeks. This was exactly what was needed. There was sunshine to help the grapes achieve maturity, cold nights to preserve the grapes' acidity, and finally, a dry wind to stop and dry out the rot. We just had to wait.... Harvest began at the end of September with radiating sunshine but cool temperatures. In the end, even if the quantities are small, 2008 is a very lovely surprise, a very Burgundian vintage with aromas deriving from the late maturation and reminding us of 1978.

Tasting notes

- Palish red. Fruity aromas of cherry and leather. Juicy, leanish and savory, with floral, minty lift and a solid spine of minerality. Finishes with good cut. (My sample of the Beaune Sizies was in a distinctly volatile stage of its evolution in barrel.)
By Stephen TANZER

-De Montille's 2008 Beaune Les Perrieres combines meat broth, crushed stone, and nut oils with tart hints of dark berries. Like its counterpart from the Sizies, this is a bit short on charm, but as it opens up, notes of game and forest floor convey intriguing complexity, and there is impressive length, incorporating a saliva-inducing salinity. This should prove quite adaptable over the next 5-7 years, though I would reassess it along the way before I'd considering holding it for a more extended period. (While the Sizies benefited from around one-third stems and whole clusters, the Perrieres and Greves received double that.) Etienne de Montille related having taken great pains in early September, 2008 to stave-off encroaching rot and promote ripeness, and felt that his rigorous leaf-pulling and crop-thinning – not to mention eventual triage – paid off sufficiently that he could vinify a substantial portion of the 2008 crop in his preferred manner, utilizing a high proportion of stems and whole clusters (100% in the case of this year's grand crus and top premier crus). Those wines for which a point spread is indicated were all last tasted shortly before their early spring bottling as finished assemblages in tank – whence they had been racked at the end of 2009 because de Montille did not think their fruit density or lees quality would have supported longer barrel-elevage. (Despite my longstanding predilection for de Montille and his wines, I regret to report that time and circumstance conspired to keep me from tasting his 2007s.) - Drink 2010 – 2017
Review by David Schildknecht - Wine Advocate # 189 (Jun 2010)