Confuron-Cotetidot Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru 2005
Ah Burgundy, where even the supposedly great wines, from great makers and vintages are underwhelming. I had this alongside the Shaw & Smith Chardonnay and they couldn’t be anymore different. One a precise, beautifully composed and delicious modern white in the prime of its life, the other a challenging, hard husk of a Grand Cru Burgundy.
To be honest this was something of a gamble, as I’ve had plenty of middling Confuron-Cotetidot releases over the years. But when they’re right, these are the wonderfully complex, long-lived wines.
The problem here is simply that there isn’t enough fruit to match the formidable structure. There might once have been, but the juice is long gone, leaving just a volatile hint of plum as a reminder. There’s a pause through the mid palate – a point where things are looking ok. But then along comes those hard, bitter, world-dominating tannins and the fun is gone. Importantly, they’re the tannins of heavy-handed extraction and oak, coating your mouth with dragging astringency.
I love shapely tannins, and the volume of Nebbiolo in my cellar attests to that, but the tannins here aren’t pretty. Nope. Nor they do anything but obscure the fruit, so terroir is forgotten too. They do make this a seriously long wine, however, but they don’t make it a seriously delicious wine. Instead, you just feel assaulted. What’s more, as this wine matures those tannins aren’t going to recede anywhere near as fast as the remnants of the fruit.
Ultimately a dissatisfying drink, even if it’s ridiculously long. Best drinking: 2010 maybe. 16/20, 87/100. 13.5%, circa $350. Would I buy it? Not again.