“They are so delicious and refreshing that I predict you will be seduced.” - Allen Meadows, Burghound
“A lovely vintage north to south: wines singing their heart out.” - Julia Harding, JancisRobinson.com
Contact the Fine Wine Team
If you would like more information on any of the wines detailed below, or would like some advice on Fine Wine buying, please contact one of our experts in the Fine Wine Team who will be happy to help you with your query.
Our specialist team is comprised of Gus McLean, Stewart Pryce, Joe Fogg and Jeff Rean, who have a wealth of experience of the fine wine trade behind them.
“There are some exceptional wines here that rank alongside the illustrious names of Burgundy. He certainly has the gift of touch that seems to elevate everything from village crus to grand crus." - Neal Martin
Having started studying viticulture at the age of 13 and then started as the general manager of Domaine Comte Armand at just 26, it’s fair to say Benjamin was a bit of a child prodigy, it’s easy to forget how young he is now despite his wealth of experience garnered already.
Now based in a winery in the heart of the town of Beaune, he has been acquiring new parcels of vineyard sites at quite a rate, but the quality is rising just as quickly as his vineyard holdings. Given the number of wines he now makes, it is remarkable how consistently excellent these wines are from top to bottom.
“Incisive but concentrated, Antoine Jobard's style was a perfect match for the 2017 vintage, and he has produced a predictably lovely range of wines that will be well worth readers' avid attention." - William Kelley, RobertParker.com
Antoine Jobard took over from his father François on his retirement twelve years ago, becoming the fifth generation to take charge of the Domaine. The 2011 vintage was the first time we had tasted chez Jobard and the wines hugely impressed. Since then the bar has been raised higher still each year. Here is a perfect example of the trend seen in Meursault over the last few years where the archetypal sweet-fruited, buttery, highly-oaked wines that dominate popular perception of the appellation have started to give way to wines that that are more lightly oaked and earlier picked, keeping a tension and focus to the wine and allowing the terroir to better express itself. Jobard now produces "some of the most long lived Meursaults" (Andrew Jefford, The New France). The flavour profile too is shifting, from tropical fruits to citrus.
“What can I say? What more needs to be said? These guys are just making stupendous white Burgundy wines that rank alongside the best you can find… If you have not discovered the Bachelet brothers yet, it's time to do so." - Jancis Robinson
Based in picturesque Dezize-Lès-Maranges, but with several parcels of Meursault, Chassagne- and Puligny-Montrachet village and Premier Cru vineyards, Domaine Bachelet-Monnot are one of the most exciting additions to our range over the last decade and have already got quite a following. The estate is run by brothers Marc and Alexandre and their wines, both red and white, are delicious, each seeming to get the balance between drinkability and structure just right.
In 2017 the proportions of new oak have been further dialled back, allowing the fruit to express itself more clearly and for the terroir difference between each cuvée to be further accentuated.
Having forged a career in the Army, Fabrice Bouard moved the family’s Domaine away from bottling for négociants and now concentrates on their own five hectares of vines including seven different Premiers Crus. While we’re reasonably well set for the whites, although volumes here are tiny at the best of times, the red Chassagne-Montrachet really stood out as part of a larger tasting with other producers and always offers excellent value versus the appellation’s more fashionable whites.
Based in a cracking spot in the heart of Volnay behind the church, Marc-Olivier Buffet has some low-roofed, charming cellars comprising not only the 2017s in their barrels, but a selection of bottled wines dating back to the Second World War, alas not available for sale!
In his vineyards he is a keen exponent of repiquage, replacing individual wines once they are dead or have stopped producing rather than ripping up large plots at one time, thus maximising the age of his vines.
He has seven hectares spanning Volnay, Pommard and Savigny-Lès-Beaune. Buffet’s wines remain great value, despite the quality on show here in 2017 – without doubt our best tasting at this address so far.
Although there is archival evidence dating the domaine back to 1704, for almost 250 years the succession passed through a sole female heir. Until the birth of Lucien Camus in 1949 therefore, the Domaine name changed with each successive generation. Luc and his wife Bernadette (née Bruchon) are blessed with both a son, Guillaume, who since 2001 has been working full-time at the Domaine and a daughter, Alexandra, who is the oenologist at the well-known Beaune négociant Albert Bichot.
Based on the edge of Savigny and overlooking the village’s finest plots, this Domaine has 9.5ha of vineyard across regional, village and Premier Cru sites in Savigny, Pommard and Beaune As we’ve come to expect from this estate’s wines, the 2017s are wonderfully expressive and are perfect wines for those who perhaps want a little more vibrancy and fruit in their Burgundy. That said, they age remarkably well too.
“His wines have tended to be a little underrated out there in the market place.” “A producer that is improving with every passing vintage." - Neal Martin
Massive quality improvements at any particular estate tend to take a few years for consumers to notice. Subsequently prices tend to rise accordingly. Chartron are in that sweet spot for consumers of producing excellent wines, but the market not yet fully recognising this, although as you can see from the quote above,, some of the critics have. These wines will appeal greatly to those drinkers who appreciate a more elegant, food friendly style of white Burgundy. That said, the ‘Benoîtes’ traditionally suits those who prefer a weightier style.
Jean-Michel was wearing a smile as wide as a Cheshire cat’s when we arrived at the Domaine to taste. That might have something to do with the quality of the 2017s. In fact, this might well be the best vintage we have ever tasted from this Domaine, edging ahead of the outstanding 2014s.
A quick trip up Rue de la Tâche in Vosne took us to this Domaine – I still cannot believe this estate remains under the radar of many of major critics (although Clive Coates did suggest that “someone in Britain should snap him up” back in 2008). That said, the Domaine has a focus on supplying high end restaurants within France, rather than supplying the export market.
These wines are perhaps on the richer side of the Vosne spectrum, but are tremendously well polished and balanced. In an otherwise quite weathly village of Vosne-Romanée, there’s something refreshingly unpretentious about this Domaine.
“Domaine de la Vougeraie has almost discretely become a major player in top quality, occasionally profound Burgundy wine. With winemaker Pierre Vincent, there was a significant turnaround in style and quality -- the wines discovering terroir expression, nuance and elegance, poise and complexity. I’ve lost count the number of times their wines have triumphed in blind tastings and yet still, I don’t think this domaine receives the credit that is due." - Neal Martin
By common consent of most Burgundy followers, quality at Domaine de la Vougeraie was lifted to a significant degree during the tenure of head winemaker Pierre Vincent. 2017 though was the first vintage since his departure and the big question was whether the winemaking team, now led by the delightfully enthusiastic Sylvie Poillot, had learnt sufficiently from the master to simply pick up the baton and run. Based on the evidence of the 2017s here, the answer is a most definite yes! The sheer attention to detail required in the vineyard to commit to biodynamic wine production means every ‘i’ is dotted and every ‘t’ crossed, no short cut is taken and this level of precision makes for impeccable quality fruit.
While Faiveley’s vineyard holdings are extensive by Burgundian standards, quality reflects the fact that this is a family Domaine, making wine from parcels under its own ownership. In fact, they care for their wines so much, this is the only cellar I have ever seen where the most precious wine is kept in barrel closed with a lockable bung!
The number of decades-olds examples of Faiveley’s wines that are pulled out for retrospective tastings underlines the fact that these wines are likely to appeal greatly to the traditionalist who is looking for more structure and for wines to cellar rather than for instant gratification. Some of the most impressive Burgundies we have tasted are from this Domaine, but all of them have been at the peak of maturity, so patience is certainly rewarded here. Though in saying that, the charming Mercurey ‘La Framboisière is once again a notable exception which can be enjoyed young.
“I would again call to your attention that the quality at this domaine has skyrocketed over the past few vintages." - Allen Meadows, Burghound
Both Allen Meadows and Neal Martin have earmarked siblings Gilbert and Christine Felletig’s Chambolle-Musigny Domaine as a rising star and our visits here over the last three years have really reinforced this view. This year we tasted a delicious range of well-made reds where Gilbert’s judgment of the optimum levels of new oak use and whole bunch fermentation seemed absolutely spot on for every wine. The wines here showed a beautiful purity of fruit as well as supple tannins and were simply delightful to taste. We are delighted to offer the wines from this rapidly rising star for just the third vintage.
“A lovely portfolio of supple, fragrant wines that represent the essence of Chambolle in their elegance and purity." - William Kelley, RobertParker.com
To call François Bertheau eccentric would be an understatement; he is with little doubt the most charismatic winemaker we met all week. Based in the centre of Chambolle-Musigny, François took over from his father Pierre in 2003 and has since had no shortage of suitors for his vineyard holdings which are all based in Chambolle and which include two of the most desirable sites in Burgundy. Stylistically these wines are fascinating, he practices ‘lutte raisonnée’ and allows the fruit to determine the style of the wine and gives it every chance by limiting manipulation in the vineyard and winery, minimal new oak and minimal racking gives a wonderfully delicate, perfumed style and has earned this Domaine cult status with sommeliers around the world.
François likes to do things his way and when we asked when he harvested in 2017, he described himself in Tour de France not as the ‘Lanterne Rouge’, the last rider in the race, but as the ‘Voiture Balai’, the broom wagon that follows an hour or so after the last rider has passed!
Last year was the first visit we had made to this estate based in Ladoix-Serrigny, just south of Nuits-Saint-Georges. Gaston’s son Pierre now runs the estate, focussing on the viticulture whilst his colleague Vincent takes care of vinification. A true family Domaine which typifies the traditional Burgundy ethos. They primarily sell direct to consumers from the cellar, but we’re delighted to be one of the first to offer them in the UK.
2017 was a very strong follow up vintage to the 2016s that impressed us so much last year. True to their geography straddling the border between the Côte de Beaune and the Côte de Nuits, the wines combine elegance with power, silky tannins with mid-palate weight and red fruit with black.
“Georges Lignier's nephew Benoît Stehly has been involved in the domaine since 2002 and took over sole responsibility in 2008, since which time the wines have become finer and finer." - Jancis Robinson
Among one of the most humble and charming people you would want to meet, Benoît Stehly is producing some delightful wines at this Domaine in Morey. Benoît has been working there since 1998 and has taken on the day to day management in the last decade.
This estate is on a run of top form over recent vintages, producing quite a spread of elegant wines across the range of classifications. It’s notable that Jancis Robinson in particular is starting to appreciate the appeal of these wines as her 2016 feature on Domaine George Lignier testifies – “I'd like to draw your attention to a domaine that seems to be getting better and better.”
“The reputation of Grivot’s wines have grown, placing them perhaps just outside the top tier of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti or Leroy." - Neal Martin
One of the Côte d’Or’s greatest and longest-established Domaines, Grivot is now predominantly in the hands of Mathilde, who in the last few years has been gradually taking over from her father Etienne.
The house style remains the same, with late harvesting and extended periods of barrel ageing resulting in a muscular, structured style that can be difficult to taste when young, but which after a few years in the cellar open up to reveal beautiful black-fruit driven wines. The quality of the Domaine’s holdings helps in no small part, however the Grivot magic is evident across the range, even on the Gamay-based Coteaux Bourguignons.
Domaine Gouges is one of Nuits-Saint-Georges’s most famous Domaines and one of the appellation’s best – “the doyen of Nuits-Saint-Georges with magnificent wines” says Clive Coates MW. The Gouges family have been owners of this Domaine since 1919 and founder Henri is something of a Burgundian revolutionary. He was a key player in the battle against fraud and was the first Burgundian to bottle his own wine because it guarantees provenance and therefore quality. Domaine bottling is now practised throughout Burgundy. Grandson Gregory runs the Domaine with the same drive and passion for quality as his legendary grandfather.
The Domaine’s wines were renowned under Henri as some of the most structured and long-lived of Nuits-Saint-Georges’ wines. However, Gregory has been working towards a more approachable style. That said, these are still wines very much built for ageing.
“The style is supple, fragrant and fruit-driven, the wines invariably succulent and satiny, drinking well young and old. Quite why Jouan remains so little known is hard to say—perhaps because there is so little wine?—but readers would do well to seek out this high-quality source, which has rendered an excellent set of 2017s." - William Kelley, RobertParker.com
Wonderfully stubborn in his winemaking approach, Philippe (Henri’s son) has a method and he sticks by it – gentle extractions, no green harvesting, the fruit always 100% destemmed and all of his new oak sourced from a single cooper, François Frères. The resultant wines are frankly rather delicious; fruit- rather than tannin-driven, with the word ‘succulent’ coming up several times in our notes. The only fly in the ointment? Availability, as alluded to by Bill Nanson in his assessment of the Domaine – “understated but with an excellent baseline of quality – I just need to work out how I will now buy some wine!” Production here is a mere three hectares.
“This is a fine address if you are seeking an alternative to, say, Armand Rousseau. Heresztyn-Mazzini is in the same mould as their neighbour, Pierre Duroché: very hands-off winemaking, letting the vineyard speak; mineral-driven and elegant wines... Yes, I know the name is a bit of a tongue-twister, but trust me, the wines are worth seeking out." - Neal Martin
Based right in the heart of Gevrey-Chambertin, 2017 is the third vintage we have offered from this Domaine and it may well be the best. Run by Florence and her husband Simon, in the vineyard the operation is run organically, with full biodynamic certification due to follow imminently. This of course necessitates a painstaking level of attention to detail in the vineyards, something that is also in evidence in the winery, with every decision, for example about the percentage of whole clusters to use, being pored over and each cuvée being treated separately according to its own needs. The wines are an absolute pleasure to drink, with the silky texture of the tannins and the purity of the fruit noteworthy.
“Gotta soft spot for Hudelot-Baillet...I don't mind admitting that. It's just got everything that I like about Burgundy: not too big, congenial winemaker, choice selection of premier crus with a grand cru if you fancy, straightforward winemaking, nothing fancy, nothing self-aggrandising. Just delicious, nuanced wines that need but a sip to compel a purchase" - Neal Martin
A Domaine often thought of for producing big, powerful Chambolle-Musigny has, based on our more recent tastings of their wares, produced a selection of wines we feel are perhaps more typical of the appellation; really very charming, precise and elegant. Dominique Leguen looks after the Domaine, taking over from Joel Hudelot-Baillet in 1998. It seems there is a general consensus that the estate has been on the rise since with bottling done at the Domaine and no nonsense winemaking techniques to carefully manage the extraction of tannins from the skins and minimising the influence from the pips allowing for softer, finer tannins.
Domaine Jean Chauvenet are Nuits-St-Georges specialists. Not only do they specialise in this particular village, but more specifically they focus on wines of real approachability and friendliness. Red fruits predominate and while the long-term ageing potential is certainly less than at the likes of Gouges, that is no bad thing for those looking to drink and enjoy their Nuits in the first three or four years of its life, especially given the quality on offer for the price.
The 2017 vintage really suits this Domaine’s style, with the growing season’s natural softness playing well against the naturally big style of the wines. The extraction levels seem high, but have not gone too far, so the resultant wines are assertive, have big tannins and are packed full of flavour.
“This is an estate whose wines I recommend with much enthusiasm." - Robert Parker
A producer who leaves us scratching our heads more so than any other. This for a number of reasons. First of all, the quality of the wines are superb, it’s absolutely crazy how inexpensive they are given the quality, but the owner is so down to earth and is perhaps very fortunate with the plots he has. He seems to have no desire to charge more than he does. How more merchants have not jumped on this producer is beyond us, maybe they just don’t know this tucked away Meursault Domaine? Monnier is a style which complements our range very well at prices that are hard to argue with. This seventh generation family Domaine own 100% of the fruit they use and it is all hand harvested. Stylistically the wines very much appeal to us given they are more refreshing, with higher acidity. A perfect partner for food, although given the style we think would be lovely to enjoy on a warm summer day.
2017 sees us add a pair of Premiers Crus to the range – the white Beaune ‘Montrevenot’ and red Pommard ‘Grands Epenots-Clos de Cîteaux’
“Beautiful, classically built wines" - Antonio Galloni
Nuits-St-Georges and particularly Vosne-Romanée is in great demand and finding good quality sources is not easy given the global clamour for these wines. To come across an under the radar family estate, like Domaine Chézeaux, turning out classic, minimal-intervention reds was a real boon and we quickly snapped up their wines. Charming and expressive of their terroir, these wines will not disappoint Burgundy fans.
Any time these wines can be afforded in bottle will be to the benefit of the drinker, however true to the nature of the 2017 vintage, there is plenty of early drinking pleasure to be had.
“Brilliant debut vintage from new Burgundy Domaine Joseph Colin in Saint-Aubin, Chassagne and Puligny... Wines of great personality, substance, intensity and verve." - Joanna Simon
“Get in at the ground floor.” It’s a good idea in theory, but how often does one get the opportunity to establish an allocation of the first vintage from a serious Côte d’Or Domaine to be released en primeur? Well, here we do have such an opportunity.
There are several branches of the Colin family making wine in and around Chassagne and this Domaine has been formed with Joseph splitting his holdings from those of his brother Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey.
Chassagne is of course a speciality, but further excitement is brought to the range with Premier Crus and a village St Aubin, plus a pair of Grands Crus.
“…it is clear that there is much to enjoy courtesy of Drouhin this year, and not only amongst their bevy of Premier and Grand Crus. Their whites are particularly strong and I would single out the Chassagne-Montrachet Embazées" - Neal Martin
Maison Drouhin was established in 1880 by Joseph Drouhin and has remained a family affair ever since, being run nowadays by the fourth generation. Frédéric is assuming overall control of the firm from his father Robert while his brother Philippe and sister Véronique, who both studied at Dijon now look after the vineyards and winemaking respectively. The estate itself occupies the breathtaking Parliament building, one of the most beautiful cellars in all of Beaune, originating from when Burgundy was an independent duchy.
Nearly all of Domaine Drouhin is fully organic and biodynamic, with that very same philosophy being extended to newly acquired vineyards. Benefitting from the use of optical sorting tables from 2013 onwards, these wines are often darker, denser and more concentrated than many.
“Domain Matrot expresses the quintessence of terroir. Its wines are sometimes closed when young, but their ageing potential is immense." - La Revue du Vin de France
Domaine Matrot was established in 1909 by Joseph Matrot and had been run solely by his understated but talented grandson Thierry since 1976, with 2015 his last vintage before handing over the reigns to his daughters Elsa and Adèle. They are now renowned as “a top-class Meursault producer” (Wine International) and own some of the best plots in Meursault’s finest vineyards.
The sisters, like their father before them, believe in using oak only very sparingly. They are firm believers that quality comes from the vineyard, so let the fruit do the talking. The result is a portfolio of white Burgundies that are intensely flavoured, incredibly pure tasting and which have excellent ageing potential. With one exception, they do not use new oak for their Premiers Crus, instead using the new oak normally reserved for a Domaine’s top labels in the entry level offerings in order to age the wood ready for the top wines.
“Domaine Méo-Camuzet boasts one of the most enviable portfolios in Vosne-Romanée" - Neal Martin
As always, the Méo-Camuzet tasting was one of the highlights of the week. If you have not had the pleasure of encountering Méo-Camuzet before, they are one of the biggest names, not only in their home town of Vosne, but in all of Burgundy. Stylistically they produce very polished, but exotic, rich wines which take oak well. They are very ageworthy, yet show well in their relative youth. Individual vineyard expression is very strong, so it is worth reading the individual notes in detail.
If one thing stood out in our tasting notes in this vintage, it is the word “concentration”. While these are wines hardly known for lacking in flavour, it is perhaps at this address that 2017 comes closest to being called a “blockbuster”. Serious wines, with serious ageing potential.
“They do represent good value and I appreciate the quality-driven ethic behind these wines." - Neal Martin
A new producer to our range in 2015 and having recently visited Bernard Bouvier to taste his 2017s, he’s a producer we’re sure is going to be one to follow.
The Domaine’s based behind a Super U supermarket in Brochon, not the most glamourous location compared to many older Domaines, but it’s credit to his wines that we came away from this visit thinking they were amongst the best we tried all week. Bernard’s a tremendously charismatic winemaker and that comes across in his wines. They have great richness, but not at the expense of vineyard expression, tasting his range of Marsannays side by side it a perfect lesson for anyone who doubts the importance of terroir.
“Readers will be aware that I have a lot of appreciation for the wines of Domaine Servin. The domain has an array of propitious parcels scattered over the region and Marc Cameron is a thoughtful and talented winemaker." - Neal Martin
Documented by the monks of Saint Martin for owning vineyards as far back as the 16th century, successive generations of the Servin family have continued the tradition of winemaking in Chablis ever since.
Today the approach is very much a mixture of modern and traditional techniques. The best vineyard sites are hand harvested to ensure fruit arrives at optimum ripeness. Single plot vinification takes place in a mixture of stainless steel and oak, letting the differences in terroir shine in each wine. The vines average 40 years and most of the sites are on kimmeridgian limestone soils. This gives the wines their power, concentration and minerality which is so typical of the Domaine’s style. The best examples have great cellaring potential.
It means reserving top vintages before they are bottled. By paying an instalment 'up front', you reserve wine while it is still in the barrel, before the wines are shipped to the UK in Spring 2020.
How does payment work?
Now you need only pay the 'cellar door' price. Prior to delivery, we will invoice you for the second instalment (duty - around £2.23 a bottle at today's prices) plus VAT on the total. Delivery (currently £7.99) is also applicable, unless you are a member of Unlimited. Alternatively, you can keep your case stored In Bond or Duty Paid in our state of the art temperature- and humidity-controlled customer storage facility (currently £10.80 per case per year).
The advantages of 'En Primeur' buying
Demand for fine wines is always high as there simply isn't enough to go around. En Primeur guarantees you an allocation of the finest wines at opening prices - providing you are quick!
Once we receive your order we will send you a Reservation Certificate to your customer address. If the wines you have chosen are sold out we'll contact you to advise which are still available.
Laithwaite's began in 1969, when geography student Tony Laithwaite took a job washing bottles in Bordeaux ...
and fell in love with wine and the people who make it. When he borrowed a van to share their delicious wines with
friends and neighbours at home, things went so well that hundreds of little wineries all around the world were soon
queuing to take part. Today we're the UK's No.1 home-delivery wine merchant, with over 1,500 wines to choose from
including red, white, rosé, Champagne, Prosecco, spirits ... you name it. Tony's still at it - and now really good
at washing bottles. Read more