Domaine Ponsot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes 2016
A very intense color: from raspberry red with deep garnet. The smoothness of its bouquet evokes the spring: rose blooms at dawn, violet under the morning dew, mignonette wet. There are added blackberries, raspberries, wild mint, licorice, truffles. On the palate, a sovereign taste, rich in sap and mellowness, where the elegant finesse and fleshy fullness.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Barrel Sample: 94-97
Vineyard Brands has history spanning more than 40 years of buying wines from Domaine Ponsot - first from Hippolyte Ponsot, later from his son Jean-Marie, and most recently from Laurent and Rose-Marie. Domaine Ponsot’s history begins in 1872 when William Ponsot purchased a wine estate in Morey-Saint-Denis and set up his home there. His major parcels of land at that time were the Clos des Monts-Luisants and Clos de la Roche. His nephew and godson, Hippolyte Ponsot, took over the domaine in 1920, and in 1932 started bottling his entire harvest at the domaine, a rarity for the time. Eventually estate was passed down to Hippolyte’s son Jean-Marie, and later to Jean-Marie’s children, Laurent and Rose-Marie. Today, Rose-Marie Ponsot is the sole director of the company, seconded by Alexandre Abel. Unfettered by the latest fashions, Domaine Ponsot has always sought to express the richness of Burgundy terroir through natural cultivation practices. Human intervention is limited and only applied to the help that the vine needs. The family’s long tradition of letting nature take the lead work that today the vineyards are in exceptional condition.
While Morey-St-Denis of Burgundy 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.
Thin-skinned, finicky and temperamental, Pinot Noir is also one of the most rewarding grapes to grow and remains a labor of love for some of the greatest vignerons in Burgundy. Fairly adaptable but highly reflective of the environment in which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate and requires low yields to achieve high quality. Outside of France, outstanding examples come from in Oregon, California and throughout specific locations in wine-producing world. Somm Secret—André Tchelistcheff, California’s most influential post-Prohibition winemaker decidedly stayed away from the grape, claiming “God made Cabernet. The Devil made Pinot Noir.”