2010 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits-St.-Georges Clos des Porrets Premier Cru
Expert Ratings
ST 91-93 points
RP 91-93 points
(Read the full reviews below)
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Henri Gouges Christian & Henri Gouges	84 Bottles of 2010 Henri Gouges Clos des Porrets

We've been cellar-hopping in Burgundy every summer for over 30 years. Still, on the eve of the release of one of the finest Pinot Noir vintages in decades, we came home all but empty-handed. It wouldn't be for lack of trying.

A severe frost on December 20, 2009 was the first of two climatic events that would cripple yields in the 2010 vintage, setting the stage for a magical harvest the following September. The second was a cold, rainy stretch in mid-June 2010 -- shattering berries, while creating a perfect recipe for a prized millerandage.

The top estates of the Cote de Nuits -- Romanee Conti, Meo-Camuzet, Henri Gouges, Roumier, Ghislaine Barthod and her husband, Louis Boillot -- bottled up monumental Premier Crus and Grand Crus. Each featured luscious, delicate red fruit intensity, silken texture, and phenomenal natural concentration, absent any of the over-ripeness that marred many of the late-picked 2009s.

Stephen Tanzer, the world's most respected Burgundy critic, said it all in the opening paragraph of his exhaustive report on the 2010 harvest in the Côte de Nuits.

"First, the very good news: all things considered, 2010 is the finest vintage for red Burgundy I have tasted since I made my first tour of the region in 1988. The vintage has virtually all the elements of Burgundy greatness: vibrant aromas and flavors accurate to terroir; bright acidity; inner-mouth tension; intensity without weight; palpable minerality; ripe, fine-grained tannins; and the concentration, balance and backbone to support a long evolution in bottle. The bad news is that the wines, especially from the best estates, are very expensive and, thanks to powerful worldwide demand, scarcer than ever in the U.S. market."

International Wine Cellar, Issue #167, March/April 2013

But as Tanzer reported, our sourcing efforts were stymied by simple rules of supply and demand. In the greatest cellars of Gevrey-Chambertin, Chambolle-Musigny and Nuits-St.-Georges, where production is counted in barrels, not pallets, the most sought-after 2010s were buoyed by a global surge in the high-end marketplace.

We visited winemaking families we first met in the 1980s. We shook hands with grandfathers, and entertained babies. After our cellar tastings, we accepted invites to lunch and dinner. But in the end, when it came to our work at WineAccess, we knew the score. We grabbed the best from the best, but our allocation would be measured in bottles!

Domaine Henri Gouges' brilliant 2010 Nuits-St.-Georges "Clos des Porrets," was drawn entirely from that 9-acre walled-in clos, set in the center cut of Nuits' calcareous hills. Yields in 2010, we were told, barely reached two tons per acre (roughly 40% off the norm), each cluster was strewn with seedless berries or prized millerandage accounting for the ethereal red fruit core of one of the more spectacular Nuits-St.-Georges of this unforgettable harvest.

Bright ruby red to the edge with piercing aromas of red raspberry minerality. Juicy and alluring on the attack, finely constructed for the long haul like all the top wines of the vintage, the 2010 Clos des Porrets sits back on its heels (as always), begging for a decade's slumber in a cool cellar.

Tasting Notes

2010 Domaine Henri Gouges Nuits-St.-Georges Clos des Porrets Premier Cru
"Good full red. Redcurrant, raspberry, crushed stone and smoky minerality on the rather serious nose. At once silky and tangy in the mouth, with raspberry and stone flavors dominating. A step up in breadth and dimension from the foregoing wines, offering lovely inner-mouth perfume. Very representative of the south side of the village: "never with explosive fruit early," notes Gouges. Has the firm tannin/acid structure to age. This large Clos comprises 3.8 hectares of vines."
91-93 points -- Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar

"The 2010 Nuits St. Georges Clos des Porrets Saint-Georges is the first wine in this lineup that shows the structure of the vintage. Freshly cut flowers, minerals, graphite and black cherries are woven into a textured fabric of notable class. I especially like its energy and drive. A precise, finely-chiseled finish rounds things out nicely. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2025."
91-93 points -- Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate

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