Jump to the reviews

As many of you will already know, Laurent Ponsot has left the building, so to speak, in order to start his own eponymous Estate. Obviously, with this having only occurred earlier this year, this news has no bearing on today’s offer. Laurent oversaw the 2015 and 2016 vintages.

The short story is that Laurent had planned to retire from his role as régisseur of Domaine Ponsot in 2020. For private reasons, he agreed with the family to bring this date forward. Everything at the Domaine has, and will, remain as is – the vision, the team, the dedication etc. – with Laurent’s sister, Rose-Marie Ponsot (who has been co-managing the estate since 1997) stepping in as the new ‘face’ of the Domaine. Laurent remains a part owner and is assisting with the transition away from his leadership. The only immediate change I am aware of is the new appointment of an export manager to provide physical support to the Domaine’s overseas clients. For his part, Laurent has not retired. Instead, he has gone on to set up a new estate with his son, Clément. Based in Gilly-les-Cîteaux, close to Vougeot. The first wines from ‘Laurent Ponsot’, as the entity will be known, will be from the 2015 vintage, focusing on Côte de Nuits’ reds (some of which will come across from vineyards that were historically offered by Domaine Ponsot) and Meursault whites. Exciting times—surely two Ponsots are better than one! More details will be forthcoming with subsequent offers.

The Vintage

Discussions of 2015 from those that have also tried a solid range of 2016 inevitably lead to the discussion of whether the year is too warm, too bold, lacking the restraint of 2016. Firstly we have to call the wines in the glass, not, fall back on rhetoric regurgitated by those that haven’t tasted wines from the two vintages whether good or bad! Too often bad wines are produced in ‘great’ years and purchased ahead of superb wines produced in ‘lesser’ years.

In any given year we see individual wines of vignerons vary due to the myriad of environmental impacts during the year and decisions made by winemakers as the fruit reaches the winery and they apply their craft.

2015 has, in general, yielded wines of darker, more immediately opulent fruit, with robust tannins, and slightly lower acids. Compared with 2016 where fruit characters are more feminine, redder in nature, tannins fine, acids a smidge higher, alcohols a touch lower. Variability across Burgundy in 2016 was much higher with frost hitting many vineyards. The winemakers really earned their tucker in 2016!

Stylistically they both offer pleasure, it simply depends on whether you prefer restraint – 2016, or, opulence – 2015.  A statement which must again be tempered by assessing what’s in the glass! As far as ageing, we will have to wait and see. It will, as usual, be a case of wine by wine assessment. Both vintages have potential to age well. Though the balance in 2016 suggests they will be more typical of years that go the distance.

Stephen Tanzer on 2015 Burgundies in General (not just Ponsot).

Some Burgundy purists are already claiming that the ‘15s are too ripe for their tastes, but I wonder if these drinkers are responding more to what they’ve heard about this very warm, very dry growing season than to the wines themselves. In any event, they will be missing a lot of great bottles if they avoid 2015. This is a very rich and rather tannic vintage from mostly thick-skinned grapes and consistently low yields, and it has produced many outstanding, mostly large-scaled wines and some that are downright massive. Although the summer was hot and dry and the harvest very early, relatively few wines made by top producers show signs of cooked fruit. Rain in August came mostly in the nick of time for vines that had begun to suffer from hydric stress. Still, as I say, owing to the dry conditions, the vintage’s tannins, although ripe, are sometimes tougher and less refined than those of the ‘16s.

For all its ripeness, fleshiness and solaire character, the 2015 vintage also yielded many surprisingly red wines, albeit occasionally with obviously elevated or even liqueur-like ripeness. Routinely, after tasting through a producer’s 2016s from barrel or tank, when I turned my attention to the bottled 2015s, the first wine struck me as much more ripe, sometimes exotic and occasionally a bit roasted. But by the next sip, or the next wine, I was able to acclimate to the earlier vintage and appreciate the density, intensity, sucrosité and structure of the ‘15s without having the feeling that I had left Burgundy for the New World.

Acidity levels range from lower than average to quite sound; malic acidity levels were generally very low but the tartaric component of total acidity was typically quite healthy in the 2015s. While only the best wines show the serious mineral/acid tension of vintages like 2014 or 2010 (many more producers compared their ‘16s to those earlier mineral-driven vintages), the ‘15s are richer, riper wines with terrific depth of fruit. They are less extreme than previous hot years like 2009 and especially 2003, and their tannins are generally sweeter than those of 2005, a vintage to which a number of Burgundy growers compare the young ‘15s. And they are generally deeper than the young ‘16s, which is why it’s entirely possible that the best ‘15s will outlast their 2016 counterparts. Many ‘15s appear to be shutting down already and are tough going today, with their savory soil tones and tannins often dominating their fruit at this early stage. Only a clairvoyant can possibly know for sure whether the ‘15s that are going into a shell today will stay that way for 3 years or 13 (or 23). But there are also many ‘15s that seduce now for their thickness, sweetness and mouthfilling fruit, and these wines can give great pleasure, particularly with a bit of aeration. The vintage’s less-successful examples, though, may not have enough acidity for long life in bottle or enough true ripeness to retain their fruit until their tannins begin to resolve.

A year ago, the majority of growers maintained that their 2015s would be drinkable early on and be unlikely ever to go through an extended dumb period. That’s no longer the case. Many ‘15s are already beginning to shut down in bottle, showing their tannic side. There’s simply too much phenolic material here for the wines to evolve along smooth, steady aging curves. Today, many growers say they’ll be happy to forget about drinking their ‘15s for at least seven or eight years, while enjoying their more aromatic and approachable ‘16s in the meantime. But the ‘16s have the balance and depth to age gracefully, and the better ‘15s have the tannic mass to be even longer-lived.

Changes Ahead at Domaine Ponsot

Rose-Marie Ponsot, has now taken over sole responsibility. Laurent has retained his former métayage contracts on several vineyards belonging to the Mercier family, owners of Domaine des Chézeaux (in Clos Saint-Denis, Chambertin, Griottes-Chambertin and Chambolle-Musigny Les Charmes), and he will purchase fruit from other vineyards, including several Chardonnay parcels on the Côte de Beaune. The rest of the Ponsot family (Laurent has three sisters and he still has a 25% share of the family estate) will keep all of the original domain vines, although the final shape of the split has yet to be negotiated.

Rose-Marie Ponsot hired Alexandre Abel as winemaker, and he made the ‘17s at the family estate. Abel took over the élevage of the 2016’s. They plan to maintain “the Ponsot style.” In fact, Abel examined the family archives going back to 1956 and discovered that even back then, Jean-Marie Ponsot (who died in 2017) harvested two or three weeks later than virtually all of his neighbours in Morey-Saint-Denis, in search of full maturity. (Laurent Ponsot only started harvesting in 2016 on October 4, and he waited until September 19 in 2017, a hot, early growing season in which most estates began picking during the first week of September.) “We don’t need more freshness in our wines,” noted Abel, “and we want to avoid getting any harshness or greenness.” Nor does the estate employ any new oak barrels; on the contrary, the youngest barrels they use are two years old and some of them date back to the late 1980s. Abel, who previously worked in Chile, South Africa and the Languedoc, will continue the practice of using very little SO2—only after the malolactic fermentations and just before the bottling.

As Laurent did, Abel generally avoids heavy extraction. He simply puts the berries in the tanks and does one or two quick pumpovers on the first day just to mix the tank. He then does one or two “small” pigeages during the first part of the fermentation, which can start quickly when ambient temperatures are warm. (He’ll warm the tanks when temperatures are cool, which is more likely given how late the estate harvests.) He then punches down the cap in the morning and afternoon for the next five days, then switches to a daily pumpover, racking the wines off their skins as soon as the fermentations have finished, and sometimes carrying out a délestage. Fermentation temperatures may mount as high as 31 or 32 degrees C. during the last couple days, and total maceration time is normally just 7 to 10 days but can go up to 15.

Abel finds 2016 to be a red fruit vintage, while 2015 is more black. Potential alcohol levels were in the lofty 13.5% to 14% range in ’16, but the pHs following the malos are a very moderate 3.3 to 3.4, vs. 3.4 to 3.6 for the ‘15s. “The ‘16s have great fruit and energy and very good balance,” he told me in January. “They’re very Pinot. The 2015s will probably need more time but they have bit more potential. But the ’16s also have significant potential. It’s not just a fresh, easy-drinking vintage.”

“Laurent has the easy smile of someone who is entirely comfortable with his approach and the wines that he makes – and he makes some of the best wines in Burgundy.” Bill Nanson, The Finest Wines of Burgundy (A Fine Wine Edition)

A little video with Rose-Marie and Abel for the French speakers.

The Ponsot Domaine

Domaine Ponsot, one of Burgundy’s most revered, innovative and iconoclastic domaines. There are so many important things to note about Domaine Ponsot it is impossible to know where to start and when to finish. Here are a few key points:

• This is a domaine very rich in history. This is perhaps the only historic Domaine in Burgundy to have always bottled it’s own wines (since the 1870s) and began selling the wines under the Ponsot label in the 30’s (around the same time as Gouges and Rousseau began Estate bottling). Clonal selection in Burgundy also began here and Jean-Marie Ponsot provided the “mother plants” from his ancient Clos de la Roche vines for the first approved Burgundy clones – all of the so called Dijon clones were taken from Ponsot cuttings in the Clos de la Roche.
• Ponsot has fabulous holdings including perfectly situated parcels of very old vines in Clos St Denis (100+ years) and Clos de la Roche (where Ponsot is the largest land owner with some 3/4 of the original vineyard). There are also small quantities of Chambertin, Griotte Chambertin, Chapelle Chambertin, Clos de Bèze, Charmes Chambertin, Clos de Vougeot, Corton, Corton Bressandes, Corton Charlemagne, le Montrachet, Chambolle Musigny 1er cru Les Charmes, and Morey 1er cru Clos de la Monts Luisants (white & red). Then there is also some Bourgogne rouge and superb village wines from Morey, Gevrey and Chambolle.
• No new oak is used and Laurent Ponsot buys five year old barrels from other respected domaines to use on his own wines. Most barrels are 10-50 years of age.
• The wines are harvested late (Ponsot is regularly the last Domaine to harvest in the Côte de Nuits) and a strict sorting occurs so that only perfect fruit makes it to the press.
• Very low or no sulphur is used (including none at bottling if it can be avoided).
• The wines are aged slowly on lees, for up to 30 months with typically only one racking for the reds, after 12 months.
• These elements (amongst others!): late harvesting, long (reductive) lees ageing, no new oak and very low sulphur make for very different, yet exceptional wines that typically require long ageing to show their best and ALWAYS must be stored in a appropriate temperature controlled environment. They often benefit from a long decant when young. Wine buyers should be very cautious therefore about acquiring older wines in Australia when there was no official Australian importer.

They often benefit from a long decant when young. Wine buyers should be very cautious therefore about acquiring older wines in Australia when there was no official Australian importer.

Ponsot has a new state of the art winery with all the modern gismos, including temperature controlled fermentation vats (open topped wooden vats) that can be operated via remote control. And yet the wine is made very naturally with indigenous yeasts, low sulphur and minimal intervention.

As to the wines, they are some of the greatest we have tasted. They are some of the most powerful in Burgundy and also some of the most expressive of their terroir. They are obviously not inexpensive, but they are also profound.

All wines sealed under Ardea Seal. Details from Laurent can be reviewed on here.

This offer has expired, wines are subject to availability. We'll do our best to satisfy your tastebuds.

The Epic Domaine Ponsot's 2015 Burgundies

  • The Whites
  • Price: $ 4,400.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 900.00 Quantity:
  • SOLD OUT
    Price: $ 810.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 390.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 185.00 Quantity:
  • The Reds
  • This assorted mixed case of 2015 Domaine Ponsot consists of: 1bottle each of Chambertin, Charmes-Chambertin, Clos Vougeot, Clos St.-Denis, Corton, Corton Bressandes, Corton Charlemagne, Griotte-Chambertin, Montrachet & 2 bottles of Clos de la Roche. SOLD OUT
    Price: $ 18,500.00 Quantity:
  • 3,000ml 1 LEFT
    Price: $ 6,000.00 Quantity:
  • 1,500ml 2 LEFT
    Price: $ 3,120.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 1,350.00 Quantity:
  • 1,500ml SOLD OUT
    Price: $ 2,250.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 1,175.00 Quantity:
  • 1 LEFT
    Price: $ 1,520.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 1,280.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 1,175.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 380.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 800.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 750.00 Quantity:
  • Price: $ 700.00 Quantity:
  • SOLD OUT
    Price: $ 380.00 Quantity:
  • $ 0.00
  • *If you do not receive a confirmation email after submitting your allocation request please contact us immediately on 1300 811 066 or [email protected]
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

About the Wines

Domaine Ponsot 2015 Whites

Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Clos des Monts Luisants Blanc

Some background: This is a “…standard-bearer of the iconoclasm of the Domaine” says Bill Nanson, and he is right on the money. It is a very special, age worthy 1er cru that is unique on several levels. Not only is it a monopole, it is also the only 1er cru for white in Morey-Saint-Denis and the only Burgundy 1er Cru that is 100% (old vine) Aligoté! At different times in this vineyard’s history there have been small quantities of Chardonnay and ‘Pinot Gouges’ (a white mutation from Pinot Noir) in the blend, yet from 2006 it returned to its pre 1930s origins of 100% Aligoté, from an ancient selection planted in 1911. There is a good reason for this – Aligoté has always produced outstanding wine here, better than anything the Ponsot clan could muster from Chardonnay. This high altitude, rocky site seems to have a natural affinity with the Aligoté grape. Once upon a time there would probably have been many other vineyards across the Côte of which we could have said the same. Today the wine commemorates its ancient Aligoté vines on the label with the Très Vieilles Vignes designation (only given to vineyards that are over 100 years old). It is a wine of incredible depth, racy energy, pulpy texture and longevity.

It was whole bunch pressed in Ponsot’s vertical press and was aged in old, neutral barrels (all between 10-60 years old). It’s been a few years since Clive Coates wrote the following, and while the price has risen, this is, in many ways, a priceless wine: “There is a brilliant complexity and delicacy about today’s Clos des Monts Luisants. It is delicious and it really is unique. And yet it is not prohibitively expensive.” The 2014 is a gorgeous Clos des Monts Luisants and the finest since 2007. Expect striking aromatics of white flowers, sap, lemon pith and mixed peel and gripping, spicy clarity. That palate is fleshy yet with chalky grip, ripe acidity and terrific length.  Extraordinary, as usual, and you should be able cellar for ten to twenty years comfortably. Obviously Meadows tasted at a difficult time.

91 Points

Pale yellow. At once exotic and fresh on the nose and palate, showing more yellow fruits and honey than minerals. Very rich, plush wine with enough acidity to maintain its shape (just over four grams per liter, according to Rose-Marie Ponsot, who added that the 2016 version has 4.5 grams). Plenty in reserve here: I never would have guessed Aligoté owing to the wine's richness. This one won't need as much cellaring as the '16. Drinking window: 2019 - 2026 (bottled in March of 2016)

Stephen Tanzer

Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru

89-92 Points

A pungent and well-layered nose exhibits notes of apple skin, citrus zest, white flower and a wisp of wet stone. There is fine vibrancy and very impressive richness to the generously proportioned, dense and sappy broad-shouldered flavors that deliver good if not truly special persistence on the citrusy finale. I wouldn't describe this as classically styled but rather as a seductive and forward C-C. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

92 Points

Very ripe apricot nose, which has a toasty edge despite the absence of new oak. Rich, generous and creamy on the rounded palate, but there is ample underling acidity to give tension and precision. Sleek, lightly phenolic, and very long. Drinking Window 2017-2028. (SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

90-92 Points

The 2015 Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru has a powerful but well-defined bouquet with scents of wild honey, praline and citrus fruit, gaining intensity in the glass but never losing its delineation. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp citrus fruit, nectarine and grapefruit notes, the acidity nicely judged, though the finish just needs to develop a little more persistence and depth. Otherwise, this is a fine Corton-Charlemagne that should age well over the next decade. (NM) (12/2016)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Domaine Ponsot's 2015 Reds

Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru "Les Charmes"

92 Points

(noted as 'En Zéro' to indicate that no sulfur was used). A ripe and fresh nose combines elegant notes of maraschino cherry, plum and spice with spice and a whisper of floral character. There is a really lovely mouthfeel to the caressing, round and highly refined flavors that exude an enticing inner mouth perfume while delivering excellent length on the focused, delineated and silky finish where the sense of refinement is enhanced by the notably fine-grained tannins. An excellent example of the vineyard. 2023+ (1/2018)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

93 Points

Pure raspberry nose with exquisite aromas that one hopes to find, not always with success, in Chambolle. Heady and seductive. Rich, sleek fruits dance on the intense palate with nervous energy, backed by fine acidity that gives persistence and drive. Long, classy finish. Drinking Window 2018 - 2030.(SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

89-91 Points

The 2015 Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Charmes has a refined bouquet, very pure redcurrant and wild strawberry fruit that opens nicely in the glass. The palate is very pure on the entry with fleshy red cherry and raspberry fruit, a keen thread of acidity with a citrus-like finish. It just cuts away a little sharply on the finish, but hopefully it will flesh out by the time of bottling. (NM) (12/2016)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Morey-Saint-Denis Cuvée des Grives

Usually very richly coloured, with vibrant reds (bright ruby, carmine, intense garnet) and hints of purple. The bouquet is shared between black fruit (blackcurrants, blueberries) and red stone fruit (cherries). There are some variants with sloes, brambles, violets, carnations, liquorice, and fruit brandies. With age, it often evokes hunting aromas (leather, moss, game) or reveals some hidden truffles! Sustained and structured, this wine waits for you on the palate with just the right balance between strength and expression of fruit. The equivalent of a tenor in the Burgundy choir, it offers well-rounded tannins and generous substance.

90 Points

Healthy medium red. Expressive aromas of raspberry and spices. Very ripe but not overripe, with its flavors of red berries, soil, spices and mocha showing captivating sweetness leavened by well-integrated acidity. Very 2015 in its smooth texture but with noteworthy energy too.

Stephen Tanzer

Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Cuvée des Alouettes

An alouette is a lark. This comes from the Morey 1er cru Monts Luisants vineyard (much of which is today AOC Clos de la Roche). Ponsot labels it Cuvée des Alouettes in order to differentiate it from his white, which also comes from this lieu-dit – specifically from the Clos des Monts Luisants (which was historically sold as Clos de la Roche before the AOC was put into law, and before that it was sold as Le Chambertin!) Previous vintages of this label have been described variously as ‘mini Bonnes Mares’ and ‘mini Clos de la Roche’. There seems to be a bit of a pattern emerging. The 2014 is another high-class showing, showcasing Ponsot’s mastery of fruit purity.

90-93 Points

A mild touch of reduction pushes the fruit to the background for the present. By contrast there is an excellent sense of verve to the muscular and mineral-driven flavors that possess fine delineation on the dusty, firm and balanced finale where the supporting tannins make it clear that this is very much built-to-age; that said this is not at all rustic or austere. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

92 Points

Healthy dark red. Deeper, more soil-inflected nose than the Cuvée des Grives, hinting at black raspberry and smoke. Dense, saline and deep if tighter in its grain than the Cuvée des Grives. This very rich, full, soil-driven wine finishes with substantial broad, dusty tannins and terrific slowly building length and lift. Very much like a smaller-scaled Clos de la Roche. (ST) (1/2018)

Stephen Tanzer

92 Points

The 2015 Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Cuvée des Alouettes is deeper and more serious than the Cuvée des Grives, wafting from the glass with a lavish bouquet of ripe plum, cherry, cinnamon, licorice, rich soil and dark chocolate. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied, sappy and powerful, with a deep core of sweet fruit that conceals an ample chassis of fine-grained, chalky tannin. (WK) (4/2018)

Decanter

Corton Grand Cru Cuvée du Bourdon

Corton is one of the four most recent Grand Crus in the Ponsot line up and every release so far has been insanely good. Ponsot began making Corton in 2009, the same vintage as his good friend Aubert de Villaine. There’s an old Burgundy joke that runs something like,“Corton would be better if only it was situated in the Côtes de Nuits.” The suggestion is, of course, that the winegrowers north of Corton know better how to handle Pinot. Aubert de Villaine and Laurent Ponsot are doing their best to prove that there might well be a kernel of truth in this gag. The fruit comes from three small parcels on the Corton hill (although Laurent refuses to reveal their exact location). The name means ‘cuvée of the bumblebee’ by the way.

89-93 Points

Quite deeply colored. A very ripe but brooding nose grudgingly offers up notes of dark cherry, raspberry, earth and a hint of the sauvage. There is exceptionally good power, volume and concentration to the big-bodied flavors that coat the palate with both dry extract and very firm tannins on the rustic, austere and slightly awkward finale. This very well may come together but it's so primary that it's hard to read. (1/2017)

Allen Meadow - Burghound

92 Points

Deep red-ruby color. Complex aromas of ripe black fruits, underbrush, spices and black pepper. Densely packed, savory wine with a tight core of fruit, spice and earth flavors. This very concentrated, energetic, soil-inflected Corton grand cru is going to need at least several years in the cellar to unwind. Tactile but very fine-grained tannins reach the front teeth and saturate the mouth on the long finish. (ST) (1/2018)

Stephen Tanzer

95 Points

A blend of four parcels worked as a joint venture since 2009. Dark fruits on the nose with Pinot lift and great intensity and purity. Very ripe with no trace of jamminess, while firm tannins give grip and structure. Very assertive now but has great energy and drive. A wine of great splendour and potential.Drinking Window 2020 - 2035. (SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

Corton Bressandes Grand Cru

This is our second allocation of this wine, which hails from a 0.26 hectare parcel of this powerful terroir. The vines here are on the younger side, but low yields of less than 25 hl/ha and Ponsot’s typically late picking offset the relative youth of the vines. It’s a deeper, more concentrated and mineral example of the Corton Hill and every bit as brilliant as the Bourdon above.

91-94 Points

A slightly more elegant if still deeply pitched nose features aromas of red and dark raspberry, earth, floral nuances and an interesting hint of smoked meat. Consistent with the elegance of the nose the medium-bodied flavors are a bit finer as well though they certainly don't lack for power, punch and concentration, indeed this is even more firstly structured and the tannic spine makes it indisputably clear that this is going to be a long-distance runner. (1/2017)

Allen Meadow - Burghound

Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru "Cuvée des Merles"

As with the Corton-Bressandes above, the Domaine’s Charmes-Chambertin is another rarity. We haven’t received an allocation since the 2008 vintage. Drawn from 0.3 hectares of 35 year old vines, this wine (along with the Clos de Vougeot) is the result of a contract established in 1999. The parcel is right on the Morey border, so technically this is a Mazoyères-Chambertin.

91-94 Points

A pretty yet very Gevrey nose displays notes of the sauvage, humus and underbrush along with plenty of newly turned earth character on the plum and red cherry-scented aromas. There is both good intensity and verve to the big-bodied and utterly delicious flavors that coat the palate with dry extract which also helps to buffer the very firm tannins on the brooding, youthfully austere and notably serious finale. This is borderline old school in style and is going to need plenty of cellaring. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

Chapelle-Chambertin Grand Cru

Our first allocation of Ponsot’s Chapelle-Chambertin outside of his famous ‘mixed box’. The stats are similar to the Griotte Grand Cru below; a small parcel (60ha in this instance) of vines planted in 1990. The first Domaine bottling dates back to 1970, so this is a site well known to the Ponsot clan. In particular, this bottling hails from En Gémeaux, the lieu-dit that borders Cherbaudes, and En la Chapelle, which borders En Griotte. Both parcels lie on particularly poor, skinny topsoil. Rippling with palate-coating fruit, this is a deeper and more structural wine than the Griotte. Where the Griotte is lithe, seductive and floral, the Chapelle is denser, more savoury and spicy. This was bottled in June, three months after the wine below.

92-95 Points

Once again there is just enough reduction present to mask the underlying fruit but not the earth and underbrush elements; moreover it is sufficiently light that I doubt that it will persist for very long. Otherwise there is a slightly finer mouth feel to the sleek, intense and muscular mineral-driven flavors that explode on the sappy, rich and balanced finale that displays strikingly good length. However, note well that like the Charmes, this is definitely not constructed for early drinking so be prepared to have at least some patience. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

94 Points

Bright ruby-red. More fruity, floral and high-pitched than the Cuvée du Bourdon in spite of its 3.6 pH, the highest of all of these 2015s. Wonderfully concentrated and large-scaled if a bit youthfully inexpressive today, already communicating a compelling sappy quality to its dark raspberry fruit. A seriously structured wine with a lot of baby fat to absorb. In fact, this wine appears to be closing down despite having been very open just after the bottling, according to winemaker Abel. Most impressive today on the horizontal finish, which features substantial but fine-grained tannins and rising length. (ST) (1/2018)

Stephen Tanzer

95 Points

A burly cherry nose, quite powerful. Rich, suave and very concentrated, but there's also a brightness that counters the very firm tannins. Grippy and even gawky now, but it has sufficient fruit to keep it in eventual balance. Very long finish. Drinking Window 2021 - 2035. (SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru

Through a métayage arrangement since the early 1980s, Ponsot has just under a hectare of vines in En Griotte (the largest holding). Griotte is a tiny, 2.7 hectare site, completely surrounded by the other Grand Crus of Gevrey. The Ponsot’s vines are now 30 years old. It’s always fascinating to compare each year the difference in the style of this wine and that of the Chapelle-Chambertin. Only a few metres separate these parcels, both sitting directly below the Clos de Bèze. Both were planted at the same time (‘84/’85) with the same selection of vines. Both are picked on the same day each year, made exactly the same way, and typically bottled together (though not this year where the Griotte was bottled a few months earlier). For all these similarities, both wines are always staggeringly different. Terroir! Juicy, fragrant and silky, here we’re seduced by gorgeously aromatic notes of the purest red fruits and white cherry; it’s a dizzyingly pure and beautifully sustained Griotte of remarkable voltage and poise. Promises to evolve into a wine of Byzantine complexity.

95 Point

From a .90 ha parcel; (noted as 'En Zéro' to indicate that no sulfur was used). A wonderfully spicy, elegant and fresh nose blends notes of red and dark cherry with those of cassis, plum, violet and discreet earth nuances. The intense and tautly muscular middle weight plus flavors are even more refined if perhaps not quite as mineral-driven while delivering superb length on the balanced but markedly austere finish where a touch of cherry pit emerges. This terrific effort is very clearly built-to-age and I wouldn’t dream of touching a bottle for at least 10 years and it should easily reward 20. 2032+ (1/2018)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

90-92 Points

The 2015 Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru has the most composed bouquet of Laurent Ponsot's grand crus from the Gevrey appéllation, with seductive scents of black cherry, wild strawberry and crushed violet. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin and crisp acidity, pretty dark cherries and blueberry here with a slither of Seville orange marmalade on the finish. It is a satisfactory Griotte Chambertin, although I would like to see more depth, more energy conveyed towards the finish. (12/2016)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

95 Points

Super-ripe and brooding nose showing black fruits. There is power and tension here. Very ripe attack, balanced and given precision by the exuberant acidity. Spicy, perky, and very long.Drinking Window 2020 - 2035.(SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes

1999 was the first year that this Grand Cru was offered at the Domaine. Laurent Ponsot clearly thinks this is a remarkable wine (so do we) and has priced it accordingly – only behind the Clos de la Roche! Sadly we have very little. It derives from 0.4 hectares of vines (spread across three parcels) on the upper slope, averaging 50 years of age. These vines are on the western edge of the vineyard, very near Grands-Échezeaux, “…behind the château like everyone else,” quips Laurent. In other words, forget about the location, the wine speaks for itself.

93-95 points

This too is notably ripe but even more restrained with its layered array of earthy dark berry fruit aromas and subtle spice notes. There is terrific concentration to the muscular and surprisingly sleek full-bodied flavors that are delicious and also possess excellent mid-palate density that drenches the palate in sappy dry extract that also completely buffers the robust tannic spine on the explosive, rustic and hugely long finish. This is an imposingly powerful effort that is also going to need a very long snooze in a cool cellar. Textbook Clos de Vougeot. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

94 Points

A gorgeous nose, a cocktail of red and black fruits showing both clarity and opulence. Rich, suave, full-bodied palate with rather grippy tannins that need time to integrate. Has Vougeot typicity, so has a certain rusticity, but there's sufficient fruit to overcome it in time. Long, chewy finish. Drinking Window 2021 - 2038. (SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

Clos de la Roche Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes

This is Ponsot’s first among equals. The Domaine is the largest landowner in the Clos de la Roche with perfectly situated vines (almost all within the Clos itself) and some of the oldest vines (average age approximately 60 years). Clos de la Roche was expanded in the 50s to include a range of neighbouring sites (Les Fremieres, Genevrières, Mochamps, Monts Luisants, etc.) that surround the original vineyard or ‘lieu-dit’ – Clos de la Roche. It is therefore important to understand that of Ponsot’s 3.4 hectares, 3 are within the original 4 hectareClos de la Roche itself! That is, Ponsot’s holdings represent ¾ of the original vineyard, which is widely considered to be the finest part of theClos de la Roche AOC, rightly or wrongly. It is certainly it’s own terroir! It is also certain that the reputation of this AOC has relied heavily on the wines of Domaine Ponsot. How much of this quality is related to terroir and how much to the age and quality of Ponsot’s vines as well as the quality of his farming and winemaking is impossible to know. It is often hard, in Burgundy, to separate the quality of the grower from the quality of the terroir. Or at least the lines are blurred. The rest of Ponsot’s holdings are within the part of Monts Luisants that was always bottled and sold as Clos de la Roche (it has the same soil). Terroir aside, this wine is clearly the reference for the AOC. To us, it is not only Ponsot’s grandest wine, but also one of the greatest red wines in Burgundy. The price needs to be viewed in this context. Interesting to note that while Ponsot usually bottles this wine last, the 2014 was the first red to go to bottle. The notes portray this thrilling wine well. In short, this is a killer Clos de la Roche.

93-96 Points

An overtly floral-suffused nose, and in particular violet and lilac, adds a touch of elegance to the liqueur-like red cherry, plum and dark currant scents. The exceptionally rich and full-bodied flavors possess an outstanding level of dry extract that imparts a highly seductive texture to the mid-palate, indeed it's even caressing, yet the intensity and power really mount as this moves toward the almost painfully intense and explosive finale. Like its Clos St. Denis stable mate, this is superb and should effortlessly reward 20 years of cellaring and still be around 50 years from now. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

95+ Points

Full medium red. Multidimensional nose combines black cherry, dark raspberry, mocha, brown spices, crushed rock and mellow soil tones. Wonderfully concentrated and elegant, and more expressive in the early going if a bit less sappy than the Chapelle-Chambertin. Offers a mix of red and black fruits (the Chapelle is more black in character) as well as a medicinal menthol quality that suggests the wine will evolve slowly. This plush, broad, mouthfilling wine finishes very long, with suave, refined tannins and captivating minerality and savory soil tones. In a dozen years, my score may look low. (ST) 95+ (1/2018)

Stephen Tanzer

96 Points

The 2015 Clos de la Roche Grand Cru Cuvée Vieilles Vignes, which was fermented with 25% whole cluster this year, offers up a deep and complex nose of plums, roasted venison, black cherries, fruit preserve, pencil lead, dark chocolate, licorice and a subtle framing of new wood. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied, supple and multidimensional, with a deep core of ripe fruit, rich tannins and an intense, sapid finish. This is a classic expression of Ponsot's singular, late-picked style, and it should make for decadent, dramatic drinking after a decade or so in the cellar. (WK) (4/2018)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

97 Points

Voluptuous red fruits on the nose, velvety and seductive. A sleek attack, opulent and luxurious with striking depth and concentration of fruit. The firm tannins are balanced by fine acidity, and this has fabulous balance and remarkable length. It will live for decades. Drinking Window 2021-2040. (SB) (2/2017)

Decanter

Clos St. Denis Grand Cru "Très Vieilles Vignes"

93-95 Points

A distinctly cool and highly restrained nose requires aggressive swirling to coax the reluctant aromas of both red and black currant, humus, earth and a whiff of that gamy Gevrey character to reveal themselves. There is an impressive underlying tension to the sleekly textured and overtly muscular broad-shouldered and mineral-driven flavors that exhibit superb persistence on the hugely long finish that is focused and reasonably well-balanced though there is a hint of warmth. Even so, this should very amply repay extended cellaring as the underlying material is just too good for very much to go awry. (1/2017)

Allen Meadows - Burghound

92-94 Points

The 2015 Clos Saint-Denis Très Vieilles Vignes Grand Cru has a very elegant and stylish bouquet with red cherry, crushed strawberry and bergamot scents the unfurl in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe dark cherries, raspberry and cranberry fruit, quite pointed acidity but with good balance on the structured, lightly spiced finish. This was showing better than several other grand crus at the time of tasting from barrel.(NM) (12/2016)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

97 Points

From vines planted in 1905 producing only 12 hectolitres per hectare this year. Exquisite fruit with great aromatic intensity and purity, quintessential Pinot. Beautifully textured attack, ripe and spicy despite the absence of new oak. A taut, intense acidity lends amazing verve and flair. Very long and structured, with a long life ahead. Drinking Window 2021 - 2040.(SB) (2/2017)

Decanter