Duroché (Gevrey-Chambertin)


What WEA say?

Gevrey-Chambertin. As with Vosne-Romanee, it is one of the higher profile villages in Burgundy where most, if not all of the producers have been discovered. What is the probability of finding a rising star in this picked-to-death appellation? It is with this heavy dose of skepticism that I made my way into this Domaine in the heart of Gevrey.

Tasting the first cuvee, a Gevrey villages from barrel, I knew that I’d struck gold. Pierre Duroché, the 5th generation of the family, started taking over from his father Gilles from the 2005 vintage onwards. The wines are almost 100% destemmed with gentle extraction and bottled relatively early to maintain their freshness (usually in December the year following the vintage). Very little new oak is used here too, less than 50%. If I had to summarize the wines, they are the most feminine Gevrey-Chambertins I’ve EVER tasted. If tasted blind, the first guess would be Chambolle-Musigny from the floral aromatics before the Gevrey earthiness and structure emerge with air.

Just one wine into the tasting, I told Pierre that I JUST HAD to bring his wines to my clients. There was a little snag though, the wines are fully sold out and that I had to wait in line for the 2014 vintage (to be released in 2016!). I had resigned myself to fate when an email came a couple of weeks later to inform that another importer did not respond on their allocations and I could take it up if I wanted to. No prizes for guessing what happened next.

For fans of robust and stem vinified Gevreys, I would gently steer you to our other offerings. But if your preference runs towards more pretty, feminine and transparent Burgundies, I would strongly recommend these set of wines from Duroché. The reputation of this Domaine has started to spread amongst the Burgundy community and WEA are ecstatic to secure the last of their ’12s. FYI, for the 2013 vintage major overseas merchants are starting to place this Domaine on allocation.

2017-10-19 06.20.22

What do the Critics say?

Allen Meadows, Burghound #53

The young Pierre Duroché is slowly taking over from his father Gilles after having joined this 8.5 ha domaine full time in 2005. Duroché describes the 2012 vintage as one where “we were very happy with the quality but not the quantity as yields were way down. After a long and very challenging growing season we finally arrived at the harvest and we began picking on the 22nd of September. The fruit was ripe and reasonably clean as it didn’t require much in the way of sorting. We did a slightly longer total cuvaison than usual which is to say around 15 days rather than 12. As to the wines, they possess an excellent balance between the fruit, mid-palate concentration and structural elements. And thanks to the ripeness levels the ‘12s should drink well young but age well too which should make them popular with collectors at all levels.” I would describe the quality of the Duroché 2012s as consistent with the general quality of the vintage. Note that the 2011s, four of which were revisited below, were bottled in December 2012. As an aside the domaine is blessed with an array of prestigious appellations including four grands crus, By far the smallest of them is the Griotte-Chambertin as there are only 190 square meters of it. Yes, you read correctly, 190 square meters, which is .0019 ha or approximately 180 to 190 vines that make, in a normal year about 80 bottles. In the past INAO has prohibited the domaine from declaring it but Duroché said that a version will be made and sold in 2012 and it is reviewed below.

Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media, Jan 2014.

Pierre Duroché’s 2012s are among the most tender, delicate wines of the year. I tasted all of the 2012s from tank just prior to bottling, which was scheduled for December 2013. Generally speaking, I am not crazy about tasting from tank, as steel tends to close wines down. I will not be surprised if some or all of these wines show better after bottling. In addition to these wines, I also tasted the Griotte, but it was in an awkward stage and impossible to evaluate.