Domaine Leroy   Clos de Vougeot

2011 Clos de Vougeot

By Domaine Leroy

2011 Clos de Vougeot from Domaine Leroy, Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, France

In the realm of Burgundy, where terroir is king and vintage variation its queen, the 2011 Clos de Vougeot from Domaine Leroy presents a resplendent expression of this royal heritage. Crafted with meticulous devotion by Lalou Bize-Leroy, the earth's whispers seem to resonate within each bottle.

 

An Investment in Elegance and Complexity

Resting at the intersection where refined sophistication meets artful complexity, the 2011 vintage is a standout testimony to Domaine Leroy's profound understanding of their cherished terroir. While some investors may seek flamboyance, this particular vintage exemplifies the quintessence of subtlety – a connoisseur's collectible indeed.

 

Eloquent Expression amidst a Season's Caprice

The year 2011 was one of caprice, where an early start to vine growth and subsequent climatic challenges bespoke a narrative of resilience and adroit management. And yet, amidst this background, Domaine Leroy's lieu-dit within the grand expanse of Clos de Vougeot has culled forth a wine bearing the hallmark of harmonious balance.

The 2011 Clos de Vougeot articulates a poetic dialogue between fruit and earth; it is an intricate lacework of lush red berries interwoven with the whisper of tilled soil and seasoned wood. As one delves deeper into its layers, subtle hints of spice and florals emerge – dancing on the palate with genteel grace. A pert acidity and refined tannins afford this wine longevity; thus, it holds promise for further maturation, rendering it ever more tantalising for long-term investment prospects.

Each tasting unfolds like a chapter from an epicurean tome, revealing both Domaine Leroy's mastery over their craft and the unique storytelling that only Burgundy's unpredictable vintages can inscribe upon its wines. In summation, the 2011 Clos de Vougeot from Domaine Leroy is an elaborate tapestry of varietal authenticity married to climatic lyricism—a wise portfolio addition for any ardent enthusiast or discerning investor seeking to capture the essence of what makes Burgundy an enduringly novel pursuit with each passing year.

Current market price

$78,450.00

12x75cl

Highest score

94

POP score

3367.14

Scores and tasting notes

94

The 2011 Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru has a sedate, refined bouquet or raspberry preserve, wild strawberry and a touch of wild hedgerow – airy and lifted. The palate is silky smooth on the entry. It is very harmonious and feminine with a succulent, sweet red currant and strawberry finish with just a tincture of vanilla. This is gorgeous and very seductive. Since I started visiting chateaux and growers in 1997, I have been fortunate to have ticked off most of my personal Holy Grails, yet a handful remain. One was to visit Domaine Leroy and taste with Lalou Bize-Leroy, who I have only met briefly on two occasions in London. Given the responsibility of covering Burgundy, I avowed to tick that one off as soon as possible. So, on a sultry Thursday morning, I finally pulled into the pebbled courtyard of her winery in the village of Vosne with maybe just a single butterfly fluttering around inside. Lalou was stepping out of her 4x4, beloved dogs yapping around their mother and perhaps warning her of an intruder in their midst. They are not exactly cut out to be guard dogs – no offence intended. Lalou was exactly how I remembered – with her wiry frame, like a titanium alloyed twig. Her piercing hawk-like blue eyes and angular cheekbones would give Kate Moss a run for her money. She was attired like a fashionable thirty-something and exuded the vivacity of a twenty-something with a penchant for the occasional rock climb. After pleasantries we discussed her belief in biodynamism and the ways in which the cosmos affects Mother Nature down to the Earth’s core. We toured the rudimentary winery occupied by the black-painted wooden vats and then down below to a vaulted tasting room, bottles lying hither and thither of what must constitute every wine she has made since acquiring Charles Noellat’s holdings in 1988 to establish Domaine Leroy. She was courteous to the point of occasionally scolding herself for vocally enthusing about the wines, mindful of not disturbing my perspicuity. Did the wines stand up to their reputations and let us face it, stratospheric price? The answer is “Yes.” Here was a master-class in terroir: the wines made in almost identical fashion in the winery, so that what is perceived in bottle is the interplay between Mother Nature and vine (under the guiding hand of Rudolph Steiner philosophy). Of course, one must always remain objective, and I have been around the block enough times to simply relate precisely what I find within the radius of a wineglass. And in 2011, it was clear that the wines of Lalou Bize-Leroy seemed to deliver a sensational level of quality that would make most winemakers curl up and weep, asking: “How does she do it?” I had to inquire at the end of the tasting whether they were all matured entirely in new oak, so seamlessly was the wood embroidered into each cuvee. Tasting through the entire range of 23 wines, before zooming down to Domaine d’Auvenay, the high points were scintillating Nuits-St-Georges Village Crus that transcended all my expectations and the sheer consistency of the Grand Crus, perhaps with the exception of the 2011 Latricieres-Chambertin, which I have always found wanting in the past. The Romanee-St-Vivant could be the apotheosis of the vintage, certainly one of the finest that I have tasted from the domaine and even dared “out-finesse” the Richebourg. What amazed me was the otherworldly precision, as if you could pick out each aroma or flavor from the air. Only the Chambolle-Musigny Charmes appeared unruly when compared to its peers, a little too feisty on the nose for my liking. Otherwise, this is just magic in a glass. Importer: Martine’s Wines, Novato, CA; tel. (415) 883-0400

Neal Martin - The Wine Advocate, 28 August 2013

Vintage performance