The Unlikely Flagship
- Cult Red Burgundy
2011 Bouchard Beaune
1er Cru Vigne de l'Enfant Jésus MAGNUMS
"Exceptional focus and balance and a very, very long, youthful and classy finish. This will be a superb wine" -John Gilman
The 1er Cru Vigne de l'Enfant Jésus is one of those insider plots where Burgundy reveals one of its secrets. It's just a 1er Cru in Beaune, but on the table, in the glass, you realize that l'Enfant Jésus can hang with big boy Grand Crus.
Every vintage, l'Enfant Jésus is one of our favorites of Bouchard's line-up. L'Enfant Jésus can age, especially in magnum. Take a look at Burghound's notes: You'll find recent and very enthusiastic tasting notes for l'Enfant Jésus bottles as far back as the late 19th century.
I'm happy to offer this small parcel of magnums, but I should mention right away that this is an extremely small parcel.
There's probably no better way to situate l'Enfant's importance than to mention that Bouchard will often pour the l'Enfant Jésus after their Grand Crus at tastings.
Bouchard owns some heavy hitting Grand Crus - Montrachet, Bonnes-Mares, Chambertin, among others - yet, it's l'Enfant Jésus that is Bouchard's flagship wine.
This is one reason why you stumble upon cases of l'Enfant Jésus quietly resting next to producers like Roumier, Rousseau and DRC in the cellars of serious collectors.
You'll find it in more modest cellars of savvy collectors. This is one of the extremely rare moments in Burgundy where value, quality and ageability intersect.
As John Gilman's quote above makes clear, 2011 is a really impressive vintage for l'Enfant Jésus. We've said this many times, but the Côte de Beaune was the sweet spot in the 2011 vintage. The wines have a gorgeous combination of concentration and tension.
Bouchard's 2011 1er Cru l'Enfant Jésus is a beautiful mix of stone and earth, dark fruits and flowers all wrapped around a precise structure with suave elegance. The l'Enfant Jésus is a part of Beaune-Grèves, and if Beaune were to have a Grand Cru, it would be Grèves. Beaune-Grèves seems to combine the confident style of Pommard, its fullness of body and its muscle, with the signature elegance of Volnay.
L'Enfant Jésus is one of the few Burgundies that has a long history for incredible quality and ageworthiness that's still within reach. This is one of our go-to Burgundies and one with a very strong following. Please give us your ideal order and we'll try our best.
To order, reply to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the store at (212) 980-9463.
Director, Fine & Rare Wine
Crush Wine & Spirits
John Gilman: "Bouchard’s flagship bottling of l’Énfant Jésus hails from vines that range from twentyseven to fifty-five years of age, and in 2011 it was raised in forty percent new wood. 2011 is a very strong vintage in the village of Beaune and the l’Énfant Jésus is clearly one of the greatest examples of this vintage I tasted from the commune. The deep and serious nose delivers a superb mélange of red plums, red and black cherries, gamebirds, a beautiful base of soil, coffee, woodsmoke and a fine framing of cedary new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very pure on the attack, with a rock solid core of fruit, fine-grained tannins, exceptional focus and balance and a very, very long, youthful and classy finish. This will be a superb wine, but give it at least seven or eight years of cellaring to allow it to really blossom!"