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2015 Clos du Moulin aux Moines Pernand Vergelesses Les Combettes

Very Good White Burgundy at a Very Fair Price
November 15, 2019


2015 Clos du Moulin


      This week our  Wednesday tasters got a pleasant surprise. That morning an importers rep had come in with some samples of good white burgundies that in this time of rising burgundy prices, she paradoxically offered to me at a discount. We tasted and I picked the best of them. That evening I reopened the sample bottle to the general approval of the tasters until the wine ran out. Several people had liked the wine so much that they asked me for seconds.

         The wine was a Pernand Vergelesses, a Cote de Beaune village that many people don't know even though it has Corton Charlemagne, one of the few grand cru vineyards for white wine. Pernand and Charlemagne share the same chalky marl and limestone soil. But where Charlemagne is south and west facing, getting the warm ripening sun, much of Pernand faces east and some even a little bit north so the grapes do not get so ripe. Corton Charlemagne is often sumptuously rich with vibrant acids and a defining stony dimension. In too many vintages Pernand ends up with just a stern unyielding minerality.

         So Pernands are not easy for an importer to market. But this one was a 2015, a warm and generous vintage where some great vineyards got overripe but some of their less advantaged sisters ripened quite nicely, thank you very much. That is where we found value, the importer and I.

         I didn't know much about the 2015 Clos du Moulin aux Moines Pernand Vergelesses Les Combettes, The internet told me very little, save that the winery is in an old Cistercian monastery,  that they farm organically and biodynamically and COMBOTTES is a single plot The estate is not on the must visit list of the usual gaggle of critics (would it be a gargle of wine critics?), so there are no points that I could share with you, even if I would.

         But the wine said a lot. Although a simple village level it had the quiet poise between fruit and stone that is the hallmark of Cote de Beaune chardonnay. It has rich fruit, but vintage-appropriate moderate acidity. It's not a powerhouse but it gives pleasure through its sense of balance and poise. Many of last Wednesday's tasters did not know why they liked it, but knew they liked it very much.

         It is perhaps a chamber music rendition of Corton Charlemagne's symphony. Its virtues are a pleasing smoothness and lightly sketched complexity, more than power and intensity. The importer and I haggled a bit, but we came up with a price that makes it very good value indeed. It's a wine to drink now but as it it got better after nine hours open I think that it has some future still ahead.

2015 Clos du Moulin aux Moines Pernand-Vergelesses Les CombettesOrganic- Biodynamic; Color: light golden; Aroma: heady rather full, very dense, , closed initially woth light wood notes, later a lightly oaked  fruit over stone; Mouth: juicy decent intensity some richness, soft clean ripe, soft acidity, exotic pear notes; Very Good – Excellent (For poise & balance


Was $53    Now $40

Special, Half case of 6   $210 (35)

Case of 12   $384 (32)

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5 cases only


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Len Rothenberg


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