Everyone talks about the vintages that produced the finest wines, and why wouldn’t they? Delicious and quite often worthy of deep time in a cellar, they are the wines enjoyed and spoken of throughout the decades. Then there are the forgotten years, the vintages that saw terrible weather at the worst times, whose wines were all but written off as times passed. The worst years can still produce fantastic wines, when produced by houses that understand how to deal with what their dealt, and come out shining regardless of the conditions.
This series will be dealing with the vintages in Burgundy of fame, infamy, and everything in between - with the best regions/producers for that year. This article will be covering the 2001 growing season.
Frankly, this was a near-terrible growing season that, somehow, managed to produce some fine wines, with a higher yield than the five-year average.
Time will be saved and say that nearly the whole of 2001 was cold, wet, and cloudy. August was a return to fine weather – after a hailstorm on the 2nd of course – and back to cool, wet, and cloudy in September. That warm spell in August gave just enough thickness to the skins to get them through the rest of the year.
As it always is, was, and will be, one can say that a vintage is good or bad, but really it comes down to the producers and their ability to manage a vintage however it lays out. For the year 2001, growers and winemakers that concentrated on quantity produced wines that were frail and lacking structure, and therefor age worthiness. The houses that aimed to make the best wines, albeit with less to work with, found themselves making classic wines, that still hold their own today (that being said, drink soon when you find one).
As much of a challenge as this year was, there is a surprisingly large amount of god juice. Keep these producers in mind:
Reds: Dom. Aucoeur, Morgon; Château de Bellevue, Morgon (Jadot); Patrick Bouland, Morgon; André Collange, Fleurie; Thierry Descombes, Juliénas; Dom. Desperrier, Moulin à Vent; Bernard Douzel, Morgon; Jean Foillard, Morgon; Dom. Franchet, Côte de Brouilly; Château des Jacques, Moulin à Vent (Jadot); Château de Juliénas/MM Condemine; Hubert Lapierre, Chenas and Moulin à Vent; Dom. de la Madone, Fleurie; Jean-Pierre Margerand, Château de Moulin à Vent; Juliénas; Michel Tête, Juliénas; Joseph Pellerin, Fleurie; Domaine du Petit Puits/Gilles Méziat, Chiroubles; Olivier Rabier, Fleurie; Chateau de Raousset, Chiroubles; Château Thivin, Brouilly; Plus the estate selections of Georges Duboeuf, Paul Beaudet, Loron and Mommessin. René Bourgeon; Luc Brintet; Faiveley; Jacquesson; Joblot; Michel Juillot; Bruno Lorenzon; François Lumpp; Rodet, François Racquillet; Clos Salomon.Comte Armand; Château de Chorey; Lucien Jacob; Jean-Marc Pavelot, Bouchard Père & Fils; Chanson, Vincent Girardin; Jadot and Nicolas Potel.Arlaud Père & Fils; Denis Bachelet; Sylvain Cathiard; Robert Chevillon; Bernard Dugat-Py; Faiveley; Fourrier; Gouges; Jean Grivot; Robert Groffier, Hubert Lignier; Alain Michelot; Dr. Georges Mugneret; Armand Rousseau and De Vogüé. Joseph Drouhin, Louis Jadot and Nicolas Potel.
Whites: Bret Bros; Cordier; Corsin; Ferret; Guffens-Heynen; Lafon; Olivier Merlin; Saumaize; Saumaize-Michelin; Rijckart; Soufrandise; Valette, Aladame; Vincent Dureuil-Janthial; Domaine de La Folie; Grangemoulin; Jacquesson; Michel Juillot; François Lummp. Bonneau du Martray; Carillon; Coche-Dury; Marc Colin; Colin-Déléger; Jean-Noël Gagnard; Javillier; Lafon; Hubert Lamy; Latour-Giraud; Leflaive; Chateau de la Maltroye; Ramonet; Roulot; Sauzet. Plus négociants Bouchard Père & Fils, Drouhin, Girardin and Jadot Alain Besson; Billaud-Simon; R & V Dauvissat; Droin; Drouhin; William Fèvre; Dom. des Malandes; Raveneau; Louis Michel; Christian Moreau, and Gérard Tremblay.
Drinking a fine wine from Burgundy is always something special, make sure you are drinking them at the proper temperature. For whites, 52° is best, with reds rising up a few digits at 56°, and as always, don’t forget the Avintage DIVA line of wine refrigeration cabinets for all your wine storage needs. For more information, visit us at www.frenchcornercellars.com, or call at +1 (833) 839-4637.
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