.By cutting off a sizable percentage of the buds during late spring of '04, Christian and Fabien Moreau managed to hold ultimate yields to a reasonable level in the context of this plethoric year, but still made the maximum allowable yields.According to Christian Moreau, there was a good bit of oidium, especially on the left bank of the Serein. They left a good part of the affected grapes in the vineyard and did a further selection in the winery.They then kept more of the lees than usual, but practiced batonnage only for the first month.Like the other top producers of Chablis, the Moreaus have made a science out of finding the optimum blend of barrel and tank for each of their cuvees. (FrederickWildman&Sons, New York, NY)
(tasted the day prior to bottling) Grapefruit, pineapple and a metallic hint on the nose. Juicy, fresh and spicy, with notes of minerals, mint and pepper. Should make a good village wine.
(from tank) Brisk aromas of pepper and spice, with some flinty reduction. Then denser and sweeter than the village wine, withflavors of stone fruits and pepper. Not the last word in precision but offers good cut and intensity and very good length.
(from tank) Purer, more minerally aromas of grapefruit and mint. Juicy, dense and supple, with a ripe grapefruitflavor and very good length. More minerally and more delineated than the regular Vaillons.
(tasted from barrel) Steely, minerally nose hints at grapefruit, pepper and coriander. Sweet, silky and aromatic, with lovely citrusflavors. Steely but not austere. A wine of moderate intensity, finishing with decent length and a slight harshness. From six-year-old vines cropped to 45 hectoliters per hectare, according to Moreau.
(done entirely in used barrels) Very pale color. Bracing aromas of lime, spearmint, snap pea, pepper and powdered stone. A step up in intensity from the Vaudesir, with a suppler, more layeredtexture and lovely inner-mouth energy. Flavors of lime, stone, minerals and flowers. Finishes aromatic, layered and long. The 2004s may be more minerally than the 2002s, notes Christian.
Reduced nose hints at flint and nuts. Dense but quite dry, conveying an impression of weight and brooding power. Dusts the palate with peach and spice flavors. Rather backward but possesses lovely fruit and does not come across as hard. Finishes long and suave.
Perfumed, pure aromas of white grapefruit, mint and minerals. The sweetest yet of these 2004s, with very intense flavors of lime and talc. This wine was moved from tank back into oak so that it could breathe a bit, notes Fabien. Still backward but not austere. Perhaps most expressive today on the juicy, very long finish.
Pure but reticent aromas of lemon candy and spices; a bit more exotic and perfumed than the "regular" Clos. Thicker on entry, then very ripe and a bit exotic in the middle palate, with a rare sweetness of fruit for the vintage. Richer than the Clos but not as complex or obviously minerally today. In fact, this is quite different in style. Today I find the Clos more typical of this great grand cru.
($23) Ripe aromas of peach and butter. Exotic, round and fat; a very ripe chardonnay with a spicy character and a bit of alcoholic warmth.
($36) Full-blown aromas of honey, apricot and white truffle. Sweet and dense but not heavy; offers much more energy than the village wine. With solid underlying minerality, this conveys a light touch. Finishes with very good length.
(these vines are 73 years old, vs. 50 for the regular Vaillons) Spicy, scented nose melds lemon, peach and apricot. Supple, sweet and fruit-driven, withflavors of peaches and cream. Less minerally than the regular Vaillons. Fatter, warmer and perhaps a tad less elegant.
($69) Reduced aromas of apricot, smoke, flint and pepper. Sweet, rich and opulent; this is really fat with material. A round and full wine that still needs a few years of aging. Again, not especially minerally, and a bit warm on the end.
($72) Good pale yellow. Vintage-defying aromas of pineapple, grapefruit, pear, flint, spun sugar and crushed stone. Dense, concentrated and minerally, with very ripe but classic flavors of pineapple, peach, apple and crushed stone.Broad but sappy, offering a lovely lightness of touch and noteworthy inner-mouth energy. Impressively fresh, precise and stylish for the vintage, and very long on the aftertaste.
($95) Roasted stone fruits, smoke and honey; shows more evidence of surmaturite than the regular Clos. Larger-scaled and superripe, but less expressive and detailed today. A bit less precise on the aftertaste.