So in the Congres de Beaune, by a vendor selling sandwiches to hungry wine -tasting locals, I ask her to say a few words about how she happened to become a wine merchant and how she chooses to work with producers (or as she calls them, the farmers).
Continuing on, I spend some serious time with Herve Tucki, whose business card reads “Ambassadeur de Marque” or “Brand Ambassador” for Grand Cru Chablis producer La Chablisienne. I taste his wines and ask him if someone blind tasting all the Grand Cru Chablis wines could identify the vineyards blind. To my surprise, he says yes ... and goes on to give a description of each vineyard.
By now, it is time to enter a different salon for journalists where we can taste wines from Chassagne-Montrachet and from Fixin (pronounced Fisson), which has five Premier Cru vineyards, the best ones located near Gevrey-Chambertin. Andrew Bell, of the American Sommelier Association, believes that a typical Fixin wine is said to share the structure of a Gevrey-Chambertin with slightly less fruitiness and believes the difference is due to the slightly cooler microclimate of Fixin along with the flatter land the commune is built upon.
As I enter this salon I meet Alex Moreau of Domaine Bernard Moreau, who tells visitors about the upcoming Saint Vincent Tour 2010 on January 30 and 31 2009, a tradition in keeping with the Confrerie des Chevaliers du Tastevin in honor of Saint Vincent, the patron saint of wine-growers. The program includes entertainment, food, and tasting sessions.The Wine Media Guild in New York featured a tasting, lunch, and theme featuring the wines of Puligny-Chassagne and Chassagne-Montrachet and how they are different.
Now its a very guilty pleasure to spend the morning tasting through ’07 Grand Cru Chassagne-Montrachet and Fixin ... the Chassagne-Montrachet were remarkable in their brightness and racy acidity. In the WSET (Wine and Spirits Educational Trust) tasting system, I rate few wines high in acidity (most of my marks are medium high) yet these wines were very high, which says a great deal about their ability to age and improve. Searing acidity is more the word, yet with great balance. As a group I found the wines to be incredibly rich in minerals, with a long finish, and hints of butter (some more than others). I discovered I could become seriously hooked on Chassagne-Montrachet - yes, there is a reason they come at such a dear price.