Domaine Leroy   Chambertin Grand Cru

2008 Chambertin Grand Cru

By Domaine Leroy

The 2008 Chambertin Grand Cru from Domaine Leroy, Burgundy, France

Amidst the pantheon of Burgundy's finest terroirs, the 2008 Chambertin Grand Cru from Domaine Leroy stands as a beacon of meticulous viticulture and profound winemaking prowess. A vintage that initially presented vignerons with challenges, 2008 evolved into a year of triumph for those who navigated its capricious climate. Lalou Bize-Leroy, with her uncompromising standards and intuitive touch, coaxed out a wine that is both a testament to the resilience of Pinot Noir and the expressiveness of its Chambertin roots.


Subtlety and Strength: A Fateful Balance

The growing season of 2008 unfurled with a cool temperament, swinging the pendulum towards finesse rather than opulence. This Chambertin Grand Cru, true to its heralded origins, exhibits an unlikely marriage of grace and structure that seduces any discerning palate. One deciphers layers in the bouquet ranging from wild strawberries to hints of forest floor – a narrative of the year's climatic tale that unfolds in every sniff and sip.


Crafting Elegance from Adversity

Domaine Leroy's handling of the peculiarities of the vintage has been extraordinary. Their 2008 rendition reveals the precision employed during harvest - a dance with timing orchestrated under the vigilant eyes of Lalou herself. The palate carries a vibrant acidity laced with redcurrant and subtle spice, indicative of the cooler-than-average summer, yet it gives way to a surprisingly sumptuous finish courtesy of meticulous cellar ageing.

For investors in fine wines, this particular Chambertin Grand Cru is poignant proof that even in less heralded vintages, masterful winegrowing can prevail to produce an exemplar offering. Its complex interlaying of earthiness with minerality positions it uniquely within the portfolio of Domaine Leroy's creations.

A jewel within Burgundy's crowning glories, this wine captures not just the essence of its prestigious appellation but also resonates with the undulations of an arresting vintage. Investment-wise, its rarity assures desirability while its quality promises longevity – cardinal virtues in the calculus of fine wine investing.

In summarisation, the 2008 Chambertin Grand Cru from Domaine Leroy is a consummate expression of both terroir and time - one that punctuates its value beyond mere consumption into an asset worthy of any cultivated collection.

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The classic scents of rose petal and licorice, allied to game, cassis, and dark cherry along with ethereal, penetrating distilled herbs and berries make for a heady aromatic display in Bize-Leroy’s 2008 Chambertin, then exhibit themselves on a palate that combines richness and vivacity, textural allure with firm underlying structure, and above all density with uncanny levity. The incursion of salted red meat juices lends another layer of complexity while tugging relentlessly at your salivary glands, whereas fruit pit piquancy and chalky minerality in no way deflect the purity of this Chambertin’s inexorable fountain of fruit. This is one of those instances were a wine is so arresting it takes control of you. I felt enervated and afterward exhausted. For the few lucky enough to acquire three bottles of this, perhaps one per decade would be the proper measure. Lalou Bize-Leroy reports average 2008 Pinot Noir yields of 13 hectoliters per hectare, almost absurdly tiny even by her singular standards. Malos were a bit later than usual but were finished by summer, and the wines bottled – as usual – in December. Yet – also as usual – if their development was thereby in any way stunted, you certainly won’t detect it in the bottle today! The best of these display a sense of transparency; levity; and – even when rich and head-spinningly complex – a sheer sense of refreshment and invigoration that I have seldom encountered in other great wines from these sister estates. (Please note that my account of the complete 2007 red collection at Leroy was published in issue #189.) Importer: Martine’s Wines. Novato, CA; tel. (415) 883-040

David Schildknecht - The Wine Advocate, 28 June 2010

Vintage performance