It's been a tough day. Rather than spending some time doing a million-and-one other things that badly need doing, I've spent far too much of my evening hunched over the engine of No.1 son's car, whilst No.2 son's car is also posing problems. Oh, the joys of motoring! And I'm the first to admit that, when it comes to cars, jobs, and life in general, our kids have it so much harder (and much more expensive) these days than we had it 25 or 30 years ago. I feel for them, and want so much to be able to help them in any way I can. Anyway, the upshot is, one car needs a new clutch, whilst the other needs a good service and a little TLC. And I needed to open a nice bottle of wine!
Domaine Gachot-Monot Cotes de Nuits Villages 2003
To be honest, from previous experience, I had no great expectations of this particular wine. I expected it to be decent, like the previous few bottles we have enjoyed, but they have been a bit variable. Some have been quite enjoyable and correct, whilst others have shown a bit too much of that 2003 richness that tends to stifle the balance which is oh-so important in red Burgundy. Not faulty, just slightly disappointing. But this particular bottle is absolutely spot-on, and just what the doctor ordered. It is slightly savoury, maybe even a touch meaty, but behind the savouriness it also displays all the hallmark Pinot aromas and flavours, with an abundance of raspberries and wild strawberries, rotting leaves, flowers and hint of orange zest. Lots of nice descriptors, I'm sure you will agree, but - much more importantly - everything knits together beautifully in a wine that has real focus, with a citrus-like acidity which lifts it from the good to the sublime. In fact, it is unbelievably fresh and full of vitality. It is rarely an easy thing to convey the true feel of a red Burgundy in the written word, but those who know the region well will know exactly what I am getting at. Which is that - when you get the right wine, on the right night, in the right mood - there is hardly a wine style in the whole world to rival it. After a somewhat trying and hectic day, this is a lovely way to end the evening - and, for a humble village wine (and from a somewhat maligned and iffy vintage), it is a truly glorious expression of Burgundy Pinot Noir. So much so that I may never experience a better bottle of this particular wine, from this particular vintage. It may just turn out to be a classic example of the old adage - there are no great wines..... just great bottles. Then again, it may just be the first of several perfect bottles - and it really is in a great place, at the moment. So I'm glad that I still have a few bottles left, as I can see it getting better and better. A lovely, lovely wine - and it cost me considerably less than a tenner a bottle at auction! :-)