Clos de la Cave des Ducs is a 0.64-hectare monopole vineyard owned by the family of Leroux’s right-hand man, Jean-Charles Carré. It’s a wine that was rarely seen before Leroux started bottling this site. With Jean-Charles, Leroux controls every aspect of viticulture and so the site is managed biodynamically and with meticulous care. The vineyard is the highest 1er Crus of Volnay, and sits on fine, light soils. The vines are up to 80 years old, with an average age of 50 years, and include a parcel of 20-year-old massale selection vines sourced from Comte Armand’s Clos des Epeneaux.
Carre and Leroux use this site as a test bed of their viticulture experiments—they are currently trialing a higher canopy—and Leroux has noted that recent harvests have seen the Clos move more and more towards a finer, more floral expression. This year Leroux retained around 20% whole bunches. It’s an exquisite release of this wine, if one that will benefit significantly from time in the cellar. The florals of rose and magnolia are there, as is the mulberry-like fruit and loads of brown spices. The tannins are certainly there too, demanding food or time. As always, a terrific bottle.
“Fine mid red with an elegance of bouquet that we have come to expect here. Gracious gentle sweet fruit, 20% whole bunch, this is very sensual and showing well, exactly the classic style of the vintage. The grapes were fully ripe but retained their balance.” 91-93 points, Jasper Morris, Inside Burgundy
I will admit to being a soft touch here. I expect this to be a favourite and stand out from the pack, and yes it’s done it again. Firstly, the nose, extra dimension of flaral with a beautiful foresty note plus hints of root vegetables added to the sweet and sensual red fruits. Love it, The palate has all this plus a more rustic dried fruit note with brown spices and mushroom. WOW. - Ian Cook, FWC