Chauvenet Nuit St. Georges 1er Cru Les Damodes Rouge 2015
"Punch enrobed by the 'velvet glove' of more gentle and silky tannins" according to Neal Rosenthal, its importer. This is serious, well-made and approachable Nuit St. Georges. On the border of Vosne-Romanee, “Les Damodes” lies at the northern limit of Nuits-Saint-Georges and this wine always shows the most Vosne-like silkiness and grace in the Chauvenet cellar. Produced from a quarter-hectare parcel of vines averaging 65 years of age, the 2014 is deep and relatively luscious, with an arresting nose of exotic spice, sandalwood, and ripe red fruits. A wisp of white pepper and a sliver of sassafras add complexity to the elegant, fine-grained but still structured palate, which culminates in a swelling, lingering finish. If it is not the most typically Nuits wine in the cellar, it perhaps offers the most potential for early-drinking pleasure among the premier crus. Harvest is manual. Vinification is classic with 100% destemming and a brief period of cold maceration followed by two to three weeks of cuvaison, the length of which is determined by the appellation and the inherent structure of each wine. A decanting follows and then the wine is moved into small barrels where the malolactic occurs. After an elevage of about 18 months, the wines are bottled without fining or filtration.