Practicing medicine requires just the right balance of art and science – the same can be said for the best wine and dining.
Doctor’s Orders shares this passion, including meticulous research into smaller production, relatively undiscovered winemakers, to enrich the experience for our fellow wine lovers!
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We were thrilled to begin our #WOPN2019 experience with a back-to-back comparison of two historic top estate producers of Burgundy, Domaine Chanson and Maison Louis Latour. While both share a similar pedigree of being founded in the 18th century, their contrasting approach to winemaking made for a fun juxtaposition.
Founded in 1750, Domaine Chanson is in historic company as one of only six Burgundy producers still remaining from the 18th century. The highlight of this tasting was the 2016 vintage of Gevrey-Chambertin from the northern part of Cote de Nuits. With a more minimalist approach to the winemaking process, which the winemaker describes as “infusion rather than construction,” the fruit is chilled immediately upon arrival from the vineyard with 100% whole cluster fermentation beginning with a long cold soak preceding maceration. To achieve this, the grapes must be nearly flawless in ripeness and condition. This process results leads to bottle that releases notable, complex aromatics on the nose and a unique spiciness and acidity paired with fresh fruit on the palate. We’re not alone in our admiration of this final product, as Wine Spectator awarded this vintage an impressive 93 points.
With a similar esteemed history, Maison Louis Latour was established in 1797 and remains at its original birthplace on the hill of Corton. The winery is operated by an 11th generation of family ownership, the seventh “Louis Latour,” who oversees 120 acres of the largest holding of Grand Cru vineyard in Burgundy. Our favorite from the portfolio poured at WOPN was the 2015 vintage of Château Corton Grancey Grand Cru. With a contrasting approach to producing incredible Burgundies, fruit from four vineyards – Bressandes, Perrières, Grèves and Clos du Roi – are independently machine-harvested, destemmed, and analyzed by an optical sorter to allow only perfectly ripe berries, based on size, shape, color and structural integrity, proceed to traditional open vat fermentation. After being aged individually in 35% new oak with a medium toast, only the best barrels are assembled to create the Château Corton Grancey Grand Cru, a bottle with an incredibly deep ruby red color, complex bouquet of dark fruit and licorice, and similar palate with additional oaky notes adding noticeable depth and length. This vintage received a similar stellar rating from Wine Spectator of 94 points.
Learning more about these two contrasting approaches to producing two equally phenomenal bottles of Burgundy was certainly a highlight of our WOPN experience!
Be sure to check out our next week’s post, when we review WOPN highlights from Sonoma and the Russian River Valley.