15 January 2016

My Top 10 Wines of 2015

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Reflecting on what was a very good year for us, I’ve compiled a list of my top 10 wines of the year. As we continue to grow as a small, family business, the most important thing is to keep the core values that has taken us to where we are today. Trading rare Burgundy is and will continue to be the forefront of Baron Wines – quite simply it’s what we are obsessed about. We completely understand your needs as many of you know quite well – we are also passionate Burg drinkers! 

Wine is one of the great expressions of nature, and ultimately we are also from nature. Our pleasure of drinking wine is completing the circle of one of nature’s blessings – it is connecting us to the terroir, to what the earth offers us. No other wines are more true to Earth and a purer expression of nature than the wines of Burgundy. In wine, mirroring life, we search for truth and goodness. In the great wines of Burgundy, we can find this and I am thankful, grateful and humbled for all the wonderful experiences I’ve had around these wines.

A big, hearty thank you for your friendship, support and business during 2015, and looking forward to another great year ahead. Happy new year. -Adam

(To keep up with what I am drinking you can click here)

10. Coche Dury Meursault 2000 magnum
Drank at my favourite restaurant in London – Bottega Prelibato. I’ve never had a Coche magnum before so gulped when I saw this. Dan and I had gone through a whole case of the regular 75cl and I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the Coche Meursault 2000 is the best vintage for the village Meursault, period. This magnum was absolutely gorgeous and what a joy to have in magnum and have several glasses! Thank you Stuart for this rare treat.
9. Truchot Charmes Chambertin 1999 
This was one of one of 11 Truchot bottles served at our Jacky Truchot dinner in Hong Kong last May and it was one of the best Truchot’s I’ve tasted and certainly on par with the 1993 and 1990 Clos de la Roche. Absolutely stunning and knock out aromatics matched by a palate of tremendous length and vivacity. Hugely energetic and my contender for wine of that night. Just beginning to drink, and will keep for many many years.
8. DRC Romanee Conti 1991
For the wine, it was meant to be the star of the show, but a couple of bottles down this list completely outshone it on this cold winter’s night in Chiswick. This was too young, and not the right time to drink – for my taste it needed 20 years+. But the sheer intensity, energy and depth of the palette was incredible and simply unforgettable, and more than earned it’s place on this humble list. Shared between three of us, there was more than enough to go around!
7. Pol Roger 1945
I am sure Winston Churchill drank a few of these! What a vintage and what a Champagne. We bought this from a cold and chalky cellar in Champagne, and it was so fresh. In fact, I would give it another 10 years for my taste! A stunning Champagne that kept on developing in glass, this was history in a bottle and now just a cherished memory. Drank with some very fine sushi cuts at Ginza Iwa.
6. Truchot Clos de la Roche 1990 & 1993
Two wines, yes, but both so irresistibly good it’s impossible to choose one – both wines also at the same Truchot dinner in Hong Kong. The 1990 was my wine of the year in 2013 (only Messi can win year after year), and both wines had so much unadulterated purity and goodness. Bottles to drink with just two other pals and watch the magic slowly unfurl in the glass over a whole evening. Both so beautiful, and with endless amounts of joie de vivre taking them to another level of wine.
5. DRC Montrachet 1969
Oily, sensual, completely coating the palette. This was a spellbinding bottle of DRC Montrachet that had endless layers, and was hugely satisfying. This more than exceeded my expectations and is surely one of the greatest white Burgundies to pass these lips! Drank this December in London.
4. Rene Engel Echezeaux 1964
Midnight in Tokyo on 6th December – After a few half-decent wines at our modern micro-Kaiseki joint we were ready for a real drink and arrived at what we were informed was a very good wine bar. Scanning the menu, there was no question what wine it would be – none other than a Rene Engel Echezeaux 1964. This specific bottle was bottle number 2700 out of 2700 and the very last bottle at this wine bar. The colour was a mesmerising pure ruby red and we held our breath in hesitation as the cork came out, in two pieces. “Congratulations!” teased the owner of the bar as he tasted it. The wine was poured…and was one of the most pure Burgundies I’ve ever come across. An ethereal, stunning beauty that kept getting better and better. Wow, just wow – simply a breathtaking wine. It was proper Echezeaux and you can’t find truer to it’s terroir than this. Delicately poised with a very sensual Vosne mouthfeel, the gorgeous aromatics got better and better with each new pour. This timeless beauty, shared with a very good friend, was really one of those ‘wine moments’ we look for and cherish and a great reminder of the pure, spectacular and very old school wines Rene Engel made – history in a glass.
3. Ponsot Clos de la Roche 1985
What a wild and beautiful wine! This really reminded me of the Rousseau Clos de la Roche 1947, which to date is still my best ever bottle. At it’s peak on a perfect drinking plateau, this was a humbling wine that was all wow. The spectacular aromatics matched the palette, where the intertwining of layers was endless. This was not a textbook wine – that wildness of character and at the same time the beauty of it made this one of the most special wines I’ve been lucky to drink. Thank you Ian for sharing this incredible wine.
2. Rousseau Chambertin Clos de Beze 1971
An epic, epic wine. Drank next to the Roumier Amoureuses 1985, this was the better wine at first. Immensely complex and a true Rousseau great, packing a daunting bouquet only the very best wines possess. I was completely and utterly enamoured with this wine, and it peaked in the first hour of drinking. The Beze had a wonderful harmony to it, and an almost indescribable bewitching charm! What a privilege to drink.
1. G. Roumier Chambolle Musigny 1er Cru Amoureuses 1985
Served blind after the 1971 Beze, I guessed this blind as La Tache from a big vintage, either 78 or 85. I was pretty surprised when I was told it wasn’t a Grand Cru! Incredible aromatics of wild strawberry and pure pinote, the infinite and constantly changing layers of complexity were pure seduction. The depth on this was mindboogling, as was the silky, feminine elegance this embodied. This was a glorious and sublime wine that was absolutely perfect to drink that day, and now a memory I’ll always cherish. Thank you Ian for this!