Isn't Chênes Lovely?
2008 Bouchard 1er Cru Volnay Clos des Chênes
Especially at 20% Below the Lowest Price in the Nation
For those who wish they could fill their cellars with fantastic Burgundy that'll drink over the next 20 years, but who feel that it's impossible to do so for under $50... this is a wine to stock up on.
We've already talked about how much we love 2008 Bouchard: The vintage has the "stuff" (see below) to age very seriously, but the slightly under-the-radar aspect of 2008 also translates into great value, making a wine of this quality and potential an affordable Burgundy luxury.
The 2008 Bouchard lineup was one of my first tastes of the vintage, and it proved to be one of my favorites (and I like the 08s a lot). All of Bouchard's wines carry themselves incredibly well, with an impressive amount of potential lurking deep beneath their youthful fruit and tannin.
Besides the Clos de Bèze (which stood out, as it should, as the champion), the Clos des Chênes was of particular note. As Allan Meadows describes, the fresh, pure and bright Pinot fruit transitions into a "rich, powerful and very serious" mid-palate and a "stunningly long finish." While I caught the certain rustic edge that I've come to expect - and appreciate - from young Beaune reds, there's also a lovely lightness here: Despite its serious depth, this isn't heavy on the palate. Instead, the muscle is tightly coiled and seems aching for another 10 years in the bottle to resolve some of its rambunctiousness and show off its full complexity and elegance.
As Ian said in writing about the Bèze, the 2008 red Burgundy vintage is one of our favorites of the last decade, and down the line it could very likely stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the 09s. As for Bouchard in particular, "the [08s] are impressively well-structured and complete, playing host to vibrant and authoritative spice, earth and fruit that will meld over the next couple of decades into a seamless, finely knit and very, very attractive whole."
Still, there's plenty to offer now, as demonstrated by my request for a second pour. I was intrigued by the violets and cool red fruit leading to the broad-shouldered palate with notable minerality and a depth of flavor that, quite simply, made me want more. One of my close friends - and an excellent yet particular client - agreed and told me on the spot that he'd take a case for his cellar.
While Lafarge's best examples from the Clos des Chênes vineyard are the standard-bearers for this site, I have no problem saying that in 2008 Bouchard's is a close second. And at under $40 a bottle, I am more than willing to load up on second place when first place comes at double or even triple the price.
I highly recommend putting a six-pack (or two) of this in the cellar. It's always rare to see a bottle of sub-$50 red Burgundy that will last for the next 10, 15 or 20 years - this one will actually evolve into something even better. And heck, at this price, you can crack a few of these as guilt-free weeknight indulgences well before that.
To place your order, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the store at (212) 980-9463.
Fine & Rare Specialist
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"A cool, fresh and very pure nose seamlessly blends aromas of red pinot, blue berry and violet hints that complement perfectly the rich, powerful and very serious medium weight plus flavors that display a taut muscularity and excellent precision on the linear and stunningly long finish. Typically, this is not quite as good as the Caillerets but in 2008, it appears to have just a bit more overall depth though we will see in time. "Allen Meadows Burghound
"Representing one of their few stragglers to go through malo very late, Bouchard’s 2008 Volnay Clos des Chenes was still in tank when I tasted it. Maritime scents of salt, kelp, along with green tea, fresh purple plum and brown spices segue into a silken yet bright palate of striking crustacean-like salinity and hints of iodine mark its sweetness as much of lobster shell reduction as of fruits or berries. Without quite the lift or vibrancy of the corresponding Caillerets, this is nonetheless long, energetic, and fine. I would expect it to keep well for 12-15 years. I did not taste the 2008 Volnay Taillepieds, of which there are now a mere 125 cases, fruit formerly on contract from de Montille having recently reverted to that domaine." David Schildknecht Wine Advocate