2018 Domaine Camus-Bruchon et Fils, Savigny-Les-Beaune “Aux Grands Liards” Vieilles Vignes, Red Burgundy, France.
Guillaume Camus at Domain Camus-Bruchon is making some incredible wines right, especially this 2018 Aux Grand Liards from this old vine Lieu-Dit in Savigny-Les-Beaune, that is quite stunning and pure with flavors that remind you of Pommard and Beaune area. This Savigny-Les-Beaune not not overt or flashy, but it’s hard to image a more quality Burgundy for the price with exceptional clarity and detail here highlighting the Pinot fruit, subtle floral perfume, mineral notes and seductive earthiness that draws you in, but never takes center stage. The Liards is a dark ruby color and wonderfully silky in texture with seamless layers of black cherry, currant, plum and red berry fruits and light accents of fresh cut roses, fine chalk and with the faintest whiffs of smoke, tea spice and baking spices on the round medium bodied palate. Guillaume’s vines are all mature averaging at least 35 years and in this case very old with 95 years old vines here in Aux Grands Liards. With these Camus-Bruchon wines there is a long lineage of continuous quality and they reflect the classic clay and limestone soils, for ages these Burgundies have fine examples of wines grown in the vineyard, and as Guillaume says, he firmly believes that one can only make wine as good as the grapes that you grow. So it is clear he spends much more time with his vines that he does in the cellar, as it should be, especially when you have the parcels at your disposal like he does. The Camus-Bruchon Savigny-Lès-Beaune 1er Crus are stunning values and this Aux Grand Liards is one of many in his collection to stock up on, this Lieu-Dit many not be Premier Cru, but this Aux Grands Liards Vieilles Vignes just might be the best Pinot for the price in all of Burgundy. I can this bottle a serious test, it was drunk with two spicy dishes and in the warm sunshine, but it came through with flying colors, handling everything with poise and grace, letting the food shine and still showing an impressive depth of form, satiny textural pleasure, as well as providing a natural freshness and cool fruit, only bringing out the best in the steamed mussels in broth with Fresno (hot) peppers and pesto like basil, as well being a fine companion to raw tuna crudo with shaved fennel and raw ginger.
Guillaume Camus, who has now taken the helm from his dad Lucien, is one of the rising stars in the Côte de Beaune, and is making outstanding and elegant wines from vineyard holdings in in the Cote de Beaune, with many parcels in Premier Cru sites, especially in the Savigny-Les-Beaune area. Like his father, Guillaume, of Domaine Camus-Bruchon, has a light touch and very much a winemaker that makes his wines in the vineyard, rather than in the cellar, everything he does is to showcase each vineyard site and produce transparent wines. He uses approximately 15% new oak in any given year, including in his top Premier Cru bottlings like this one, preferring to follow the Domaine’s tradition of crafting raw, balanced and graceful Pinots. The Camus-Bruchon wines see an extended maceration to fully extract the terroir and structure with about 18 days in total for the period of fermentation. The wines are all done with indigenous yeasts in old school concrete vats before being racked of to the French oak for over a year and then they are bottled unfined and unfiltered to capture every nuance and the full sense of place. The Camus-Bruchon Burgundies, which I have been following and buying for many years have been superb dating back many vintages and remain savvy buys for the Burgundy enthusiast, they offer great terroir driven flavors and character at an insanely good price and they age fantastically well as I have found at trade tastings, when I have experienced 20 to 30 old bottles that showed almost no signs of their age. I took a uncharacteristic gap in reviewing these wines, which isa shame, as they taste even better than I remember, with the 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 being excellent, as I noted, but this 2018 is looking like a step up. All the vineyard sites farmed by the Camus family are dome using sustainable methods and with great respect for the lands and to promote healthy soils, these wines really showcase each site’s distinct micro climates and are really respectful of history of this region. As with most all of the Camus-Brochon wines, you can enjoy this 2018 Savigny-les-Beaune Aux Grand Liards now, particularly with robust cuisine, though personal experience has proven that these wines can age incredibly well, so you can put some bottles away and be gloriously rewarded with patience, as I have no doubt this wine will be excellent in 10 to 15 years too.
($40 Est.) 93 Points, grapelive