jamie goode's wine blog: A Burgundy lunch

Thursday, October 04, 2007

A Burgundy lunch

Had lunch today at St John, with a very pleasant group of people who I'd not met before (this was one of those 'offlines'), with the theme being Burgundy. St Johns is good for wine dinners because the food is so great, and the service is superb. But the wine glasses are really bad. Your local corner bistro has better glasses. And the decision to have rubbish glasses, apparently, was made right at the top. We asked for their better glasses, but this was a bit of a problem as they were short of them (we were a party of 8), but after a while they appeared. They could only spare one each, though. And these were like slightly over-sized ISO glasses, which if I encountered in any other high-end restaurant, I'd ask if they had any better glasses. I'd brought along a couple of Riedel 'O' Syrah glasses in my bag, so I used one and donated the other to my neighbour. Enough about glasses. What were the wines like? My notes below. As an aside, my neighbour commented on the route many wine nuts take. It begins in Bordeaux, goes to the Rhone, and then finishes in Burgundy.

Burgundy lunch at St John, 4 October 2007

Fontaine Gaignard Chassagne Montrachet 1er Cru Les Caillerets 2004
Very bright, lemony, toasty nose is quite aromatic. The palate has a creamy, toasty richness. It’s broad with some bright lemony freshness. 90/100

Bonneau du Martray Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru 1994
Initially this is amazingly youthful, and a little mute, but it begins to express itself after time in the glass. Fresh, tight minerally nose with a stony sort of character. The palate is tight and minerally with nice pure fruit and a rather reticent, elegant personality. After a while, this wine begins to show itself with some complex minerality emerging. Serious stuff in a rather lean, tight style, with the potential to develop further. 93/100

Dominique Laurent Nuits St Georges 1er Cru Les Damodes 2000
Aromatic, open, slightly funky nose reminds me of some ‘natural’ wines, with its meaty warmth. The palate is open and elegant with warm, spicy, open fruit. It’s a very attractive style of wine, but perhaps a little unusual. 90/100

Fourrier Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru 2003
Deep coloured. Open, sweetly fruited nose is quite dark with a hint of tar and some slightly funky notes. The palate is full, spicy and quite elegant with sweet dark fruit and a bit of tannin. It’s not really giving a great deal at the moment. 89/100

Armand Rousseau Ruchottes-Chambertin ‘Clos des Ruchottes’ Grand Cru 2003
Lovely aromatic nose with forward ripe fruit and a hint of meatiness. The palate is beautifully expressive with sweet fruit – almost like a very elegant New Zealand Pinot Noir. Quite expressive and fruity, this is delicious, but perhaps atypical? 93/100
Armand Rousseau Chambertin Grand Cru 1997
This is more evolved than you’d expect, with a distinct brown tinge to the colour. It has a warm, deep, spicy nose with a tarry, fudgey edge. The palate is dense, spicy and full with some nice spicy tannins. Quite expressive, warm and complex. The fruit has faded, though. 91/100

Armand Rousseau Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru 1997
Open, expressive, elegant nose is beautifully perfumed with lovely aromatic red fruits. The palate is open and has lovely fresh, expressive red berry fruits together with some cherry notes and some spice. Supremely elegant: this is what we come to Burgundy for. 94/100

Faively Corton ‘Clos des Cortons’ Monopole 1990
Slightly medicinal, spicy nose is quite savoury. The palate is still quite tannic with some medicinal, spicy notes, but these tannins are beginning to soften a bit. I can only guess that this was once a big, chunky, tannic wine. Now it’s evolving: it isn’t particularly elegant, but there’s some real appeal here. 91/100



At 7:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

more importantly ... its st john's - what did you eat! roast marrowbones with duck heart salad to follow?!?!

At 7:51 AM, Anonymous luke said...

hmm, is that scott manlin at the right end of the picture?

At 8:35 AM, Anonymous Alex Lake said...

So was that an eBob affair?

I'd like to do more lunch offlines.

At 9:07 AM, Blogger billn said...

Nice 'lunch' Jamie. That lemon you get is really quite a strong characteristic of the 2004 whites. That, coupled to the freshness has made many of these lovely, focused early drinkers.

Still no plans to be in London - yet...

At 9:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Nope, wasn't me...but would have loved to have been there...I love that place...


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