Vintage 2012: Precious Bourgogne wines
One year after the harvests, the 2012 vintage is fulfilling the promise of the first tastings. The year was notable for its rollercoaster weather, with a mild winter, spring‐like temperatures in March, followed by a sharp drop and some frosts, a sunny May, cold and rainy June, and an unstable summer with periods of heat wave, hail and storms.
Although the cold and damp during flowering led to shatter and millerandage, with an inevitable impact on volumes, the sunny and warm late summer allowed the grapes to attain good levels of ripeness and the harvest was relatively disease‐free.
Today, the wines of the 2012 vintage are revealing more of their personalities. Their wide range reflects the aromatic diversity that characterizes the wines of Bourgogne. They also reflect the climatic conditions to which the vines were subjected, and the efforts of the winemakers and négociants to bring out the best in the fruit. These wines all have two characteristics in common: small quantities, but good quality.
Chablis and Auxerrois
As in most regions of the Bourgogne, the changeable weather conditions had an impact on yields. In the earlier‐ripening sectors, shatter and millerandage led to a drop in volumes, although the quality was unimpeachable. The wines are particularly expressive, developing intense aromas of ripe fruit, underscored with some wonderful floral notes. In the mouth, they are rounded and dense, with good structure. Those wines from more late‐ripening plots are characterized by more subtle citrus scents and tangy fruits, well‐defined and mineral in the mouth, where the acidity gives them a pleasant crispness.
Côte de Beaune
The Côte de Beaune was hit by hail, resulting in a significant fall in volumes harvested, especially in the central and southern sectors. The wines are showing remarkable quality overall, with nice concentration and undeniable aromatic complexity. Spared the hail, the hill of Corton and the surrounding region produced some marvels. The wines, with notes of ripe and dried fruits, are powerful and vivacious in the mouth, revealing clear ageing potential. The very promising results lived up to expectations.
Suggestion: Domaine Rougeot – Monthélie “Les Toisières” 2012
Not having suffered from hailstorms and having been less affected by bad weather, the Côte Chalonnaise provided an excellent 2012 vintage.
Made from very healthy fruit, which reached full maturity, the wines are rich and full‐bodied. They exhibit excellent aromatic qualities, with odors of white fruits and apricot mingling with delicate floral notes (lime blossom, acacia, etc.). The mouth is full and fleshy, and superbly structured.
The Mâcon region bounced back well after the poor spring weather. Although shatter and millerandage led to reduced volumes and in places, slowed ripening, the quality of the wines obtained is exemplary.
They are very expressive on the nose, with intense aromas of ripe fruits (pear, apple, apricot), accompanied by subtle hints of flowers. The mouth is both rounded and dense, fleshy and perfectly balanced.
The 2012 vintage here produced many spectacular successes.
Patient winemakers got their reward. Maturity was a long time coming, but was finally attained, thanks to the small volumes produced. Fruity and with a pleasant crispness, the wines are full in the mouth, with pronounced tannins.
Côte de Beaune
The violent hailstorms that swept the Côte de Beaune left an indelible trace on the year’s output. Some plots in the communes of Pommard and its surroundings lost up to 80% of the harvest.
These difficult climatic conditions were responsible for the low volumes produced. The resulting wines benefited from the effect of concentration, which has become a qualitative advantage. They are fruity and spicy, with good breadth, and a crisp, pleasing acidity. Their body and tannin structure mean they have very good ageing potential.
Thanks to rather more clement weather conditions than in some neighboring regions, the Côte Chalonnaise produced a vintage that will go down in the annals. Outstanding maturity and peak condition grapes allowed for wines with exceptional aromatic and gustatory characteristics
Côte de Nuits
With 2012, the Côte de Nuits produced an excellent vintage. Having escaped the hail, but not the effect of shatter and millerandage, the grapes reached maturity in tip‐top conditions.
The wines, with a deep color and aromas of small fruits and very ripe berries, are remarkably balanced. Both smooth and crisp, their roundedness is underscored by especially soft tannins. With a succulent finish and impressive length, they can without any doubt be considered wines for long ageing.
This release outlines some generalities. Since each wine and each winemaker is unique, every wine must be individually tasted before its character can be described.