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Lignier-Michelot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2016

Pinot Noir from Morey-St-Denis, Cote de Nuits, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
  • RP97
  • BH93
  • V92
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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RP 97
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2016 Clos de la Roche Grand Cru includes 70% whole-bunch fruit with 30% new oak. It has a very exuberant, typical bouquet for this vineyard that goes out of its way to please: copious black cherries, griottes and crushed violet aromas all demanding attention. The palate is sweet and supple on the entry with saturated tannin counterbalanced by a fine bead of acidity, harmonious and linear at first, then fanning out on the second half with lightly peppered black fruit. There is a very long aftertaste here and you can sense the presence of this wine 45 to 60 seconds after it has departed.
Barrel Sample: 95-97
BH 93
Burghound.com
An exuberantly spicy and sauvage-inflected nose of plum and various dark berries is trimmed in just enough wood to notice. There is almost painful intensity to the muscular big-bodied flavors that brim with sappy dry extract that pushes the very firm but not hard tannins to the background on the structured and impeccably well-balanced if noticeably austere finale. Patience is again definitely advised.
V 92
Vinous
(30% new oak, or roughly the same percentage as all of the 2015 crus here): Bright dark red. Very sexy, subtly complex scents of dark raspberry, black cherry, licorice, coffee and mocha, with suggestions of liqueur-like ripeness. Densely packed and thick, with subtle sweetness supported by ripe acidity. Quite juicy and savory in the mouth, then firmly tannic but not dry on the very long, rising back end. The yield here was a normal 42 hectoliters per hectare. This wine struck me as a bit New World in character when I first tasted it from barrel, but today it's clearly communicating its Morey terroir. (Lignier did not open a bottle of his Clos Saint-Denis, as he has just 140 bottles--plus another 140 for the owner of the vineyard.)
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Lignier-Michelot

Lignier-Michelot

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Morey-St-Denis

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While Morey-St Denis might not get the same attention as its neighbors, Gevrey-Chambertin to the north and Chambolle-Musigny to the south, there is no reason why it shouldn’t. The same line of limestone runs from the Combe de Lavaux in Gevrey—all the way through Morey—ending in Chambolle.

There are four grand cru vineyards, moving southwards from the border with Gevrey-Chambertin: Clos de la Roche, Clos St-Denis, Clos des Lambrays, Clos de Tart and a small segment of Bonnes-Mares overlapping from Chambolle. Clos de la Roche is probably the finest vineyard, giving wines of true depth, body, and sturdiness for the long haul than most other vineyards.

Pinot noir from Morey-St-Denis is known for its deep red cherry, blackcurrant and blueberry fruit. Aromas of spice, licorice and purple flowers are present in the wines’ youth, evolving to forest and game as the wine ages.

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Pinot Noir

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One of the most finicky yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is a labor of love for many. However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. In fact, it is the only red variety permitted in Burgundy. Highly reflective of its terroir, Pinot Noir prefers calcareous soils and a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality and demands a lot of attention in the vineyard and winery. It retains even more glory as an important component of Champagne as well as on its own in France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions. This sensational grape enjoys immense international success, most notably growing in Oregon, California and New Zealand with smaller amounts in Chile, Germany (as Spätburgunder) and Italy (as Pinot Nero).

In the Glass

Pinot Noir is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry and cherry with some heftier styles delving into the red or purple plum and in the other direction, red or orange citrus. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and a lively acidity. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount) it can develop hauntingly alluring characteristics of fresh earth, savory spice, dried fruit and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon and tuna but its mild mannered tannins give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry: chicken, quail and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, Pinot noir has proven it isn’t afraid of beef. California examples work splendidly well with barbecue and Pinot Noir is also vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

For administrative purposes, the region of Beaujolais is often included in Burgundy. But it is extremely different in terms of topography, soil and climate, and the important red grape here is ultimately Gamay, not Pinot noir. Truth be told, there is a tiny amount of Gamay sprinkled around the outlying parts of Burgundy (mainly in Maconnais) but it isn’t allowed with any great significance and certainly not in any Village or Cru level wines. So "red Burgundy" still necessarily refers to Pinot noir.

PRG001336_16_2016 Item# 522150