2012 Échezeaux Grand Cru, Domaine Georges Jayer

2012 Échezeaux Grand Cru, Domaine Georges Jayer

Critic score
95/100 info
Case, 6 Bottles
From a client
1 available

Wine details

  • Region & country
    Echézeaux (Grand Cru), Flagey-Echézeaux, Côte de Nuits, Burgundy, France
  • Colour
  • Sweetness
  • Style
  • Unit Volume
    Bottle (75cl.)
  • ABV
  • Classification
    Grand Cru

Tasting notes

The 2012 Echezeaux Grand Cru comes from the sub-climats of Les Treux and Cruots. It needed a little patience – initially reticent like a stage-struck schoolgirl, but she soon finds her voice, with mineral-rich red berry fruit that is very focused and defined. The palate is very fleshy on the entry, with a slight ferrous note lending this complexity. It is a driven Echezeaux, gaining momentum in the mouth, with a razor-sharp finish and a long, peppery aftertaste. This is one of the best Echezeaux of 2012.

I first came across Emmanuel Rouget’s wines in the late 1990s, a very respected name, albeit one that lay under the long shadow of the late great Henri Jayer. How could his nephew possibly follow in his footsteps? The general consensus was that Emmanuel’s wines could be great, but they lacked that Jayer “magic.” Speculation as to how much Uncle Jayer remained involved in the winemaking following his official retirement in 1996 and until his passing in 2006 fostered the notion it was Henri who kept one hand on the tiller. Personally, like many others, I found Emmanuel Rouget’s wines very good and occasionally brilliant, but more erratic and missing the flair that distinguished Jayer’s wines of the 1980s and 1990s. I first visited the domaine in the picturesque town of Gilly in Flagey-Echezeux back in 2006. The reclusive Emmanuel had a reputation of being difficult at times, though I found him amiable, the perfect gentleman, in fact. Returning in January 2013, the first thing that I noticed was I would be received not by Emmanuel, but his 22-year old son Guillaume. Did this constitute a changing of the guard? Guillaume’s first vintage was in 2009, his brother Nicolas joining one year later. I conjectured how much input they have had upon the wines vis-à-vis their father? As we descended into the cellar, Guillaume seemed wary and laconic, but he soon eased up as we commenced tasting through their 2012s from barrel, the wines due for racking just before bottling, probably in June. Quantities have always been small here, and in 2012 the domaine lost 50% of volume, mostly due to coulure during flowering. The harvest commenced around September 25 and finishing just over a week later, the fruit this year completely de-stemmed. I was bowled over by the quality of these wines. I was taken aback by their quality. They surpassed all expectations. Like always, I was hoping for some of that old “magic sparkle” and perhaps for the very first time upon visiting this address, I found it. Their 2012s are imbued with breath-taking precision, elegance and mineralite, and thankfully the label does not have to say “Cros Parantoux” to experience those attributes. Right down to the Bourgogne Rouge, their wines seemed totally harmonious, weightless and focused, each expressing their terroir with style and panache. They surpassed my expectations, and upon departing, I felt excited about their future. Is this a new chapter opening for Domaine Rouget? Maybe. In the meantime, bravo Nicolas and Guillaume. I think Henri himself would have been proud of these wines.

Neal Martin, Wine Advocate

Also from this producer