Monday, January 18, 2010

TN: Bernard Baudry 2007 Chinon Les Grezeaux

I haven't had the best experiences with 2007 Loire reds. Uneven is probably the best that I can say for the several I've tasted. The Bernard Baudry 2007 Chinon Les Grezeaux has added a massive peak to the several valleys I've encountered in this vintage, however. Les Grezeaux is made from 60 year old vines grown on gravel with clay subsoil, according to The Wine Doctor's profile of Bernard Baudry. I generally haven't liked wines from gravel soil as much as those from clay or limestone, but perhaps the combination of gravel and clay is what makes this cuvée unique. If you look up 'transparent' in a hypothetical wine dictionary, you'll see this wine. It's pure, elegant, and, yes, transparent.

Here are my notes:
Extremely ripe in the context of 2007s. Nose is cassis laden with just a hint of the herbaceousness one might anticipate. A bit rosy, too, and there's an intriguing metallic/earty aroma at times (pencil lead/china clay/kaolin????). Balanced and lively on the palate. Very light oaking, maybe just enough to round out the wine. Fairly high acidity, but with sufficient weight and fruit. Tastes like smashed rocks. Minerality and fruit linger on the great finish with some young tannins. Just a pleasure to drink, elegant.
Another user of CellarTracker, JamesSanders, phrases it better and more succinctly:
A fruit bomb for those of us who prefer tart and savory flavors. Just bursting with tart raspberry fruits, with some savory notes of olives and green tobacco. Long finish that calls you back. Not many young reds with a better fruit/acid balance than this. I always hate getting to the end of the bottle because it just gets better and better.
Basically, this wine is perfect in the sense that it is extremely well-made, and indicative of its place and vintage. I've read this cuvée will age forever. While that may be true, it would be hard to keep my hands off of it. It's just that good. Young wine simply doesn't get much better than this. Jeff at Viva la Wino agrees, this wine rocks.

Pros: Elegant, Lighter Body, Aromatic, Minerality, Fresh, Earthy
Cons: None
Decant: Yes, opens up with air
Price: $21 from K&L Wines
QPR: Excellent (out of Poor, Mediocre, Fair, Good or Excellent with Fair denoting expectations were met for the price point)


Jeff said...

I got lucky and was able to grab the last bottle they had at K&L Hollywood yesterday...interestingly, the guy at the counter was telling me he prefers this to the "Le Clos Guillot." Regardless, this is going to be a wine that I start picking up every year. Glad that you liked it too.

CabFrancoPhile said...

This is good stuff. I saw in '06 Grezeaux was blended into Baudry's regular Chinon bottling. I wonder why? Regardless, I'll definitely buy this untasted in the future as well.

Based on Wine Doctor's website, I'd bet Clos Guillot is denser and more structured with some oak. I'm assuming it's less transparent than Grezeaux, at least now. It would be fun to try, though.

Jeff said...

I bet they blended it because something was deficient in the regular Chinon. Maybe it was way too green or something? Or it didn't have enough acid? Sometimes the sum is better than the parts...but 06 was a better vintage than 07; the Grezeaux should have been good. Did it get blended into Les Granges or into the Chinon? The Chinon was awesome; I did not have the Les Granges.

CabFrancoPhile said...

It was blended into the Chinon bottling. Perhaps that explains its awesomeness!

Matt Mauldin said...

This sounds like one to seek out. Maybe I can find it somewhere way out in my neck of the woods... The exchange in the last post had me laughing BTW.... good stuff.

CabFrancoPhile said...

The last post was an interesting one! Less controversy for this one.

Good luck finding a bottle of Les Grezeaux. I think there's like 1 bottle left in CA. Kermit Lynch imports for the west coast; perhaps there's a different importer for the east coast.