Domaine Leroy   Chambertin Grand Cru

2006 Chambertin Grand Cru

By Domaine Leroy

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Haunting rose petal, anise, and ripe cherry in the nose of Bize-Leroy's 2006 Chambertin signal a classic of its appellation, and the texturally-caressing, mouth-coating impression that follows tells you that this will be singularly 2006 in its tenderness and youthful approachability. Like the corresponding Latricieres, you have to look hard to find this Chambertin's abundance of fine tannin, as the flavors seem almost to hover over the palate, and its long finish practically dissolves into sheer inner-mouth perfume. The suggestions of carnal and mineral nuance here are extremely subtle – though almost sure to grow with time – and it is the wine's remarkably ethereal yet intense presence of sweetness and perfume that render it already unforgettable. The results achieved by Lalou Bize-Leroy in 2006 are all the more notable in view of the misgivings she expressed early on about this vintage. (And, as her reaction to 2004 demonstrates, she will not shy away from declassifying even her entire production if she feels that the wines are not up to their terroir pedigrees.) As voluptuously rich as are Bize-Leroy's 2006 reds, they preserve the sense of buoyancy and elegance common to so many of the standouts of this vintage, and one's gums will not come away fatigued by the strength of underlying tannin or the near-hyper-concentration displayed by her – to be sure awesome – 2005s. As every year, these wines represent meticulous vine manicure; miniscule yields ("above all regulated by severe pruning, not triage," Bize-Leroy emphasizes); and fidelity to biodynamic methods and metaphysics; and were bottled in the second December following the harvest. Despite their winsomeness, they have long life expectancies. Since, however, I have very little experience of their predecessors as they have matured, I have confined my prognostication to a few isolated and very general comments in the tasting notes that follow. Note that I have included as well under the heading "Leroy" the wines of Madame Bize-Leroy's Domaine d'Auvenay – its cellars located outside Saint-Romain – which now encompass two appellations in red, since inevitably when information is being sought about these wines, and even often when they are described, it is under the name "Leroy." Importer: Martine’s Wines. Novato, CA; tel. (415) 883-040

David Schildknecht - The Wine Advocate, 21 December 2009

Vintage performance