2015 Burgundy: Domaine Hubert Lignier

I began visiting Domaine Hubert Lignier as a graduate student, and Laurent Lignier has always been phenomenally generous with his time (and wine) ever since. So it was personally as well as professionally gratifying to discover that the Ligniers have produced some of the finest wines to be found in the Côte de Nuits in … More 2015 Burgundy: Domaine Hubert Lignier

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Marc Delienne: a new star in the Fleurie firmament

Marc Delienne quit a job in Paris to pursue his long-standing passion for wine professionally, purchasing the Château de l’Abbeye Saint Laurent d’Arpayé in the village of Fleurie after a stint under the tutelage of Eloi Durbach of the Domaine de Trévallon. He produced his inaugural vintage in 2015, and his two cuvées are very … More Marc Delienne: a new star in the Fleurie firmament

Visit: Domaine Georges Noëllat

I first visited Maxime Cheurlin to taste his 2012s, and I’ve followed his wines with great interest and enthusiasm ever since, visiting every year. 2015 appears to be his greatest vintage to date. Maxime’s style might best be described as lavish: these are never aggressively structural or extracted wines, their elegant tannins always beautifully enrobed … More Visit: Domaine Georges Noëllat

Are terroir norms normative?

What do we mean when we talk about a particular terroir’s character, personality or signature? It’s a superficially simple question. After all, it seems straightforward enough, in principle, to extrapolate which characteristics routinely differentiate the wines produced from a particular site from those produced on other sites. In practice, however, things rapidly become more complicated. … More Are terroir norms normative?

It’s not you, it’s me: thoughts on Champagne Salon

Over lunch with two seasoned sommeliers last week, conversation turned to the subject of Champagne Salon’s recent releases: the 2002 and 2004. “Has the Salon style changed?”, I asked, observing that to my palate the vintages of the new millennium lacked the energy of those produced during the last. The discussion was interesting. While my … More It’s not you, it’s me: thoughts on Champagne Salon

Artisanal wine, every day

The United States’ greatest obstacle to becoming what Jefferson called ‘a wine-drinking nation’ may well be its vintners’ indifference to keenly-priced wines. North American winemakers display plenty of ambition to rival the first-growths of Bordeaux or the top producers of high-appellation Côte d’Or Burgundies, but very little to challenge France’s numerous artisanal producers of delicious, … More Artisanal wine, every day