Maison Joseph Drouhin   Griotte Chambertin

2006 Griotte Chambertin

By Maison Joseph Drouhin

2006 Griotte Chambertin from Maison Joseph Drouhin, Burgundy, France

The 2006 Griotte Chambertin from Maison Joseph Drouhin stands as a testament to the resilience and adaptability of Burgundy's terroir in a year that presented winemakers with a mosaic of challenges. This particular climat of the Gevrey-Chambertin appellation has, over decades, revealed wines peppered with a unique assemblage of nuances not easily forgotten by those who've had the pleasure.


Investing in Terroir: The 2006 Vintage

A year marked by an unsettled climate, 2006 presented vintners with trials, yet also with opportunities to craft wines of exceptional character. The season swung between extremes, with April frosts followed by a warm summer that hastened ripening before rainfall ushered in September. These conditions summoned the diligence and expertise of Maison Joseph Drouhin’s team to groom the Griotte Chambertin into one of the more intriguing investments for collectors and aficionados alike.


Distinct Tasting Journey

On first approach, this wine betrays the rigours of its vintage; an olfactory ballet where cherries – pulp and pit – pirouette amidst hints of smoked meat and clove. The palate reconciles strength with grace; robust tannins are swathed in silk, emboldening flavours of ripe raspberry and an earthy undercurrent that speaks earnestly of its appellation. As one would expect from Maison Joseph Drouhin, the attention to balance and structure is impeccable—hallmarks which enable the 2006 Griotte Chambertin to maintain its allure in the glass as it evolves with time.

The finish is generous yet precise, leaving a trail of spice-laden forest floor notes – a lingering tribute to Burgundy's capacity for finesse amidst adversity. It whispers of potential further unfurling when allowed the honour of time in one’s cellar.

In summary, the 2006 Griotte Chambertin from Maison Joseph Drouhin encapsulates a vintage fraught with capricious weather patterns, yet ultimately triumphs as a contender for prudent wine investment. It is both an exquisite narrative on perseverance and masterful winemaking—a vintage worth savoring now or investing in for years to come.

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Scores and tasting notes


The Domaine Drouhin 2006 Griotte-Chambertin required especially rigorous selection and gentle extraction, largely as a legacy of hail, opines Veronique Drouhin-Boss, and it seems to have paid off. A healthy ruddy color is matched by flavors of fresh sour cherry and red raspberry wreathed in narcissus and herbs, and leading to a bright, invigorating finish with undertones of sandalwood, salt, beef marrow, moss, and chalk. This might not be the last word in ripeness or be especially texturally rich, but it is full of energy and grand cru in its sheer, penetrating persistence. There is something a bit white wine or Riesling-like about it, no doubt an indirect result of the hail and thus of the vinificatory approach taken. Drouhin did not attempt to bottle a wine from their hail-ravaged Clos de Beze. "I was skeptical when the harvest came," says Philippe Drouhin about 2006, "because the weather had been so hectic; we had to sort the grapes; and it was not as nice as '05. But the more I tasted the '06s in the course of the year, the more I liked them." Winemaker Jerome Faure-Brac says he was hyper-cautious about avoiding the extraction of bitterness or under-ripeness, and employed vendange entier (whole clusters with stems) on a significant share of the grands (and top premiers) crus, but only in conjunction with rigorous table-sorting. Most came in at 13-13.5% potential alcohol. The wines were bottled about as early as they ever have been at Drouhin, to preserve and avoid drying out the fruit. (Just as elsewhere in this report, I have frequently indicated in my tasting note whether the source of grapes is the family's domaine or contract fruit, but have not attempted to reflect this as part of the descriptions used to identify the wines.) Importer: Dreyfus-Ashby & Co., New York, NY; tel. (212) 818-0770

David Schildknecht - The Wine Advocate, 21 December 2009

Vintage performance