"Les Taillepieds" 1er Cru de Volnay 2012

The vintage

The harvest began September 17 and continued through the end of the month.

Recalling the 2012 vintage brings on two different sentiments. For one, there is the great satisfaction to have an excellent vintage in terms of quality, especially in red. For another, there is the profound disappointment of tiny yields accompanied by the hail devastation of many vines, from Santenay up to Pommard. The weather was difficult at the beginning of the season but improved around mid-July, which saved the quality of the vintage. Concerning the yields, they are very low, and everything that could have contributed to lowering them happened in 2012: small flowering, poor fruit set, uneven berry size...and unfortunately, hail.

The aromas have a rare complexity and elegance. They offer an astonishing bouquet of spices, cherry pits, black fruits, dried flowers, musk and hard candies. The textures are simultaneously dense and ethereal. The attacks are brisk and the mid-palates are etheral and lengthy. The tannins are soft and well-wrapped in intense fruit that vascilates between tangy and sweet. The suave finishes offer refreshment and persistence.

We left two-thirds whole clusters in Beaune Perrières, Beaune Grèves and Volnay Mitans and 100% in Volnay Les Taillepieds, Corton Clos du Roi and all the Côte de Nuits cuvées, including in our village level Nuits-St-Georges « Les Saints-Juliens ». These are all wines to age for at least ten years, even 20-25 years for the Grand Crus and « Grand » Premier Crus from the Côte de Nuits.

This is quite rare, but we have found slight reduction in most of the wines. As such, we advise to decant them about one hour if they are being tasted before they reach ten years old.

Tasting notes

-Strong reduction renders the nose impossible to assess. As is usually the case there is an intense minerality to the sleekly muscular medium weight flavors where the stems are very much in evidence on the overtly austere, precise and impressively long finish. This won't be for everyone as the austerity isn't subtle and at present there is a hint of backend dryness, but in this case there is a reasonable chance that it will age out and my predicted range offers the benefit of the doubt in this regard.
Score: 89-92 Tasted: Apr 15, 2014 Drink: 2020+ Issue: 54 - Allen Meadows

-100% whole bunch. 30% new oak. 30-year-old vines. Deep blueish crimson. A bit reduced. A bit tough on the end. Lots there but difficult to judge now. Score: 17+ Jancis Robinson