Recently George Derbralian of Atherton Wine Imports  organized and hosted a dinner in honor of Pierre Yves Colin and his wife Caroline at Bouchon restaurant in Beverly Hills. Atherton Wine Imports imports and sells Pierre Yves’s wines in the West Coast. Today Atherton Wine Imports also represents many of the famous growers in Burgundy as well as an extensive list of the great growths of Bordeaux and other French wines. I have been buying wines from Atherton since they first opened in 1981. And, I have been buying his wines and visiting Pierre Yves since he first started his business in 2006 and before that his father, Marc Colin, from the 1980s. (To read a recent article on Pierre Yves and his 2014 wines click here ).
The dinner featured two of Pierre Yves’s wines and other Red Burgundies all in magnum. The wines were contributed by George and some of the rest of us at the dinner. Pierre Yves’s wines were spectacular. And we also had several other terrific Burgundies, a lovely Champagne, and great old d’Yquem as well. George worked with the chef on the menu. The food was excellent and matched beautifully with the wines. Below is a copy of the menu followed by my notes on the wines.
A.R. Lenoble “Les Adventures” Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs
This is a special cuvee. It is a blend of the best vintages from a plot of vines totaling just over an acre that are planted in the Grand Cru village of Chouilly at the foot of the Château de Seran. The bottles are aged for nearly 10 years and each bottling is the result of rigorous selection with less than 2000 bottles sold each year. This is a fully mature Champagne that has a lot of style and finesse. The wine has a light yellow color with a faint golden tinge and a lovely perfume showing floral notes and hints of crème brulée. Very pure with great elegance and flavor, it is creamy with a faint citrus tinge, a nice crispness, and a long finish – Outstanding Plus.
2009 Pierre Yves Colin-Morey Montrachet (en Magnum)
Light yellow gold in color with a great perfume showing floral citrus notes and a faint honeyed nuance this Montrachet is absolutely delicious. It is beautifully balanced with great elegance and has a lot of depth and flavor with a myriad of flavors suggesting peach and citrus with a subtle honeyed tinge and a very long finish – Extraordinary.
2008 Pierre Yves Colin-Morey Montrachet (en Magnum)
Like the 2009 Montrachet, this wine is simply marvelous with a more noticeable mineral quality and great depth and richness woven into a seamless palate impression. Faintly honeyed with a citrus tinge this is a Montrachet that, while great today, will only continue to evolve and give great pleasure for many years ahead – Extraordinary Plus.
2002 Pousse d’Or Volnay Caillerets “Clos de 60 Ouvrées” (en Magnum)
A wine of great balance and charm this Volnay has a very nice color and a gorgeous floral tinged perfume. Silky and rounded the wine has lovely plum tinged fruit and is elegant with a lot of charm. It is at a peak, but will keep for an extended period – Outstanding.
1999 Domaine Anne Gros Clos de Vougeot “Le Grand Maupertui” (en Magnum)
This wine is made from grapes grown on a very special plot of Clos de Vougeot located just below Grands Echezeaux. The oldest vines here were planted in 1905 and the average age of the vines is over 50 years old. It is a wine of great richness that typically needs a lot of time to show its best. This 1999 is a great example and is clearly great, but still needs more time. The color is deep and the wine has a stunning perfume with floral notes and black fruits. On the palate, there is a lot of intensity and a myriad of black fruits. The wine has a lot of richness and depth which is backed by a firm underlying structure. Over time the wine will soften and become even more expressive. This is a truly great Clos de Vougeot with a long life ahead – Outstanding Plus/Extraordinary.
2002 Domaine Groffier Père et Fils Chambertin Clos-de-Beze (en Magnum)
Now fully mature this is a lovely Clos-de-Beze that will keep well into the future. It has a deep color with an amber edge and a gorgeous perfume with floral spice tinges and underlying berry fruit. The wine is quite rich and flavorful with the fruit showing a faint underlying foresty quality and a long finish – Outstanding Plus.
1976 Château d’Yquem
From a very hot year, this d’Yquem shows impressive concentration and richness with an abundance of botrytis complexity. It is golden orange in color and has a deep honeyed perfume with a myriad of tropical fruits and hints of toasted coconut. On the palate, it is rich and unctuous with the texture of a light liqueur. The kaleidoscopic flavors show honey, coconut, mango, and orange zest, with faint nuances of spice, dried pineapple, butterscotch, and toasted almonds. A monumental wine to be sure, this d’Yquem will be no different than the other great vintages of d’Yquem and keep for many more decades – Extraordinary.