($178) Medium red. Floral, high-pitched aromas of strawberry, red cherry, rose petal and minerals. Dense and rich but a tad chunky, even youthfully severe, for a Drouhin wine, with distinct suggestions of superripe fruit. There's some floral lift to the red fruit flavors as well as a chocolatey quality on the finish, which features dusty tannins.
Author: Stephen Tanzer
Issue: March/April 2008
Wine Advocate | Rating: 90
Drouhin's 2005 Charmes Chambertin (from the |true| Charmes, and from purchased grapes) offers site-typical vividness of cherry fruit, with subtle notes of licorice, vanilla, flowers and brown spices in a lovely bouquet. Sleek and refined in texture and strikingly pure in fruit on the palate, it seems a bit demure (though bright and mouth-watering) in its finish, possibly on account of its recent bottling. These 2005s were bottled around two months earlier than usual, says Frederic Drouhin, to retain freshness. (Long-time oenologue Laurence Jobard, incidentally, was replaced this year by Jerome Faure-Brac.) As is always the case, fruit from a great many properties owned or accessed by Drouhin is declassified and blended out, leaving only selected terroirs as the subjects of single-site bottlings. (In 2004, for example, even the Beaune Clos des Mouches - due to hail - was declassified into lip-smacking, remarkably soothing Cote de Beaune.) That said, as befits the quality of 2005, there were more individual bottlings from this vintage than is usual, and I did not taste all of them. (Wines from the Drouhin domaine holdings display a |D| in their listing.) This year's collection radiates class from top to bottom. Even Drouhin's ubiquitous, 25,000-case generic |Laforet| displays tender, ripe cherry fruit, a silky palate and iodine-like minerality.