Yak's Home Page
Introducing Yak
Yak's Rating Scale
Yak's Burgundy Primer
Tasting Notes Archive
Wine & Food Adventures

Chassagne - Chenevottes..... Pinot Gris - Rangen..... Richebourg.....


Friday night dinner 'chez nous' with our old friends Amihai & Dafna and our new friend Yair Hajdu.
Really extraordinary dinner by Dorit, preparing simple dishes using top class ingredients to match the fantastic wines of the evening.
Calamari in olive-oil and balsamico
1992 Chassagne-Montrachet 'Chenevottes', M. Niellon
Baked Crabs in white wine
1995 Pinot Gris 'Clos St. Urbain', Zind-Humbrecht
Roast beef with dauphinee potatoes
1989 Richebourg, DRC
Cheese (mature Gruyere)
1989 Chateauneuf du Pape 'Ch. de Beaucastel', Perrin
(No tasting note here as I have posted many in the past)
Stuffed apple in crispy pastry

Everything - every dish, every wine and the wonderful camaraderie and ambiance - contributed to the most perfect and enjoyable evening. By the time we have reached the coffee we were really all cosy and mellow. Dafna sang a few impromptu famous arias, the rest of us joined in with some old favorites.
Good wine and good food and good atmosphere - I sincerely find it hard to think of a better way to bring people together...

Chassagne-Montrachet 'Chenevottes' 1992 M. Niellon

12/99. Acquired from London, Mar-96 for $41.
A year have passed since I had this extraordinary wine. A 1er Cru with the depth, concentration and wide spectrum of a first-class Grand Cru.
COLOR: Medium straw yellow.
NOSE: Exquisite flowery and white fruits aromas bursting out of the glass. Semi-ripe secondaries with very light wood elements to enhance the fruit. Rich, seductive and extremely elegant nose.
TASTE: Lots of winyness here, with fresh young-tasting fruit and minerally mouth-filling butter-like constitution. Excellent grip, wonderful flavors and fine measured acidity, all add to the total experience on the palate. Went beautifully with the now-in-season succulent calamari.
LENGTH: Really long and stylish aftertaste.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Medium-full body (in Burgundy terms), finely structured with plenty of fruit and flowers that after 8 years manage to stay fresh and enticing. Excellent acidity and overall balance.
OVERALL: Outstanding! This wine is of Grand Cru stature in every respect but pedigree.
MARK: 19/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? Yes.

Pinot Gris, Rangen 'Clos St. Urbain' 1995 Zind-Humbrecht

12/99. Acquired from New York, Jul-99 for $74.
I have had quite a few of Zind-Humbrecht wines in the past. I like their supple mouth-filling style, but this specific wine was simply out of this world! Not an SGN and not even a Vendange-Tardive (at least no such designations on the label), yet this was by far the richest 'regular' Alsatian I ever had.
COLOR: Deep full and saturated golden yellow. You fall in love with this wine just by looking at it.
NOSE: So rich and concentrated it is hard to imagine. Ripe fruit, sweetish-scented flowers and minerals - these kind of powerful aromas must come from low-yield, very old vines and berries that were able to reach a degree of ripeness only a perfect vintage can allow.
TASTE: As rich and deep as the nose. Every sip results in a mouthful of concentrated honeyed fruit developing as layer upon layer reveals supple round and enticing flavors. The wine is not totally dry, though it is more rich than sweet. Nothing cloying or heavy here of course. Elegant, classy and wonderfully balanced in spite of its richness. Superbly complemented the naturally sweetish crab meat.
LENGTH: Simply never-ending. The tiniest sip was followed by lingering aftertaste.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Full bodied fully-textured and very expressive wine. Fruit, concentration, depth and overall stance one rarely gets in a white table wine. Among the very best whites I ever tasted, and that includes most Grand Cru Burgundies.
OVERALL: Extraordinary!! A wine I will never forget. Fantastic now but will probably stay that way for a decade or two...
MARK: 19.5/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? Yes.

Richebourg 1989 DRC

12/99. Acquired from Beaune, June-94 for $176.
Richebourg, one of the most evocative names in the world of wine. And from the illustrious Domaine de la Romanee Conti too [not that those of Jean Gros, Meo-Camuzet or even Gros Frere & Soeur should be scorned at!]. One can hardly dream of better nectar...
COLOR: Medium-dark with deep hues. Very good looking for a 10 years (B).
NOSE: Amazingly fresh cherries on first sniff. Alas this aroma changed relatively quickly to semi-ripe, prune-like fruit. The beautiful 'Bourgogne Nose' that enveloped the fruit was as enticing and delicate as one could hope for. Totally captivating nose if not the most powerful.
TASTE: Very good [though not 'awesome'] concentration. Elegant, multi-layered and multi-dimensional on the palate. Wonderfully tasty with ample winyness. Extremely sensual on the palate, with receding soft tannins and measured acidity for perfect balance. Another success at the wine-food match game orchestrated by Dorit. The marriage with no-nonsense roast beef was just what this Richebourg needed to show of its qualities.
LENGTH: Very long and wide-spectrum aftertaste.
TEXTURE & BALANCE: Medium-full bodied [again, (B)-wise]. Smooth texture, excellent fruit, good acidity and round tannins for perfect balance. Perhaps a few more years will melt all the ingredients into an even more harmonious nectar.
OVERALL: Superb (at least)! Though I think the 1989 La Tache I had a year ago was a bit better. And perhaps even the 1989 Meo-Camuzet.
MARK: 18.5/20.aaaaaaaaBUY MORE? Maybe.

Reach Me? yak@yakshaya.com

Yak's Home Page
Introducing Yak
Yak's Rating Scale
Yak's Burgundy Primer
Tasting Notes Archive
Wine & Food Adventures

Copyright 1996-2003.
Jacob "Yak" Shaya.