"Les Rugiens-Bas" 1er cru de Pommard 2010

The vintage

We began the 18th and finished the 30th of September 2010.

After a challenging winter where frost affected lots of vineyards and caused many young plants to die, 2010 began a bit behind schedule but with the softness of a rather hot spring. However, flowering didn't have the advantage of good weather, and this resulted in poor fruit set (coulure) and an abnormal mix of berry sizes within clusters (millerandage). Summer got off to a good start with a lovely first half of July. However, moody and chilly weather then set in until the beginning of September, when Burgundy's best helper in that month, a wind called la Bise (the Kiss), cleared the skies for a radiant sun to dry the vines while temperatures remained fresh.

2010 is an excellent vintage for reds. They remind us of 2002 as much in aromatic profile as in texture. Finesse, elegance and energy are perhaps the best qualities of this year. The noses open with small red fruits then develop with great complexity into sweet spices, morello cherries and flowers, the latter found frequently in the wines vinified with whole clusters - a typical result of this vinification technique.

The mouthfeels are copious, ethereal and fresh. The most remarkable aspect of this vintage is probably the texture, which has such a rare finesse and silkiness thanks to its simultaneously melting yet structuring tannins accompanied by a touch of tangy acidity on the finish. The result is a sensation of energy given the dynamic combination of freshness and softness.

Most will be ready to drink between 2015 and 2025 while the top Premier Crus and Grand Crus could wait until 2030 or 2040 and will be magnificent bottlings.

Tasting notes

-A wonderfully layered and intensely floral nose features notes of rose, violet and lavender that add a sense of refinement to the red berry fruit aromas. There is an exquisite minerality to the energetic and tautly muscular flavors that are shaped by relatively sophisticated tannins before terminating in a long but overtly austere finish. Like the Pézerolles, this stunning Rugiens is a distinctly understated effort at present that will require many years before it reaches its apogee.
Allen Meadows

-Two-thirds whole cluster, because their grapes were in very good health. Scented. Sweet and round and very fresh. Jancis Robinson – score : 17