2010 Maison Philippe Pacalet, Gevrey-Chambertin “Bel Air” Premier Cru Red Burgundy, France.
This wine shows a youthful rush of flavors and has a striking wildness that seems alive and vibrant with electricity of the elements. The nose starts out like a cross between a Domaine de Montille Burgundy and a old vine Gamay, likely the native yeasts and low sulphur in this all natural wine showing through, plus the peppery stemmy spices, all of which highlight bright fruitiness and savory essences on the palate. Pacalet’s 2010 reds are bursting with unique character and charms, these are not traditional wines, these are radical re-thinks of what Burgundy can be, while they are lovely and sexy, they may not live up to everyone’s expectations, especially in this price class, though I am enthralled by them and we watch there evolution in bottle, things at this stage are impossible to predict, so these artisan expressions might be worth every penny. Regardless, these are noteworthy wines and throughly pleasing to the senses, with this 2010 Gevrey-Chambertin Bel-Air being my favorite with driving strawberry, cherry and plum fruits, red and black peppercorns, earthy loam and truffle, plus crunchy stony mineral notes with plenty of acidity, saline and silky tannins. Look for grand aromatics to develop with wilted roses and violets, though muted still at this point, along with cinnamon and soft oak shadings. This unfined or filtered cuvee has a light to medium hue, slightly clouded, but look for it to deepen with a bit of time in bottle, though I must say I really enjoyed this vivid and transparent Pinot from Pacalet and I don’t think it is a crime to pop the corks here young, but again beware it is not your average Burgundy by all means.
($120 Est.) 93+ Points, grapelive
Avail at www.sfwtc.com ($114.95)