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History of a wine: now too good for a Thursday night! 02/12/2004 (TNB)

I think I bought three or four bottles of J-M Bouley's Volnay Caillerets 1987 about 10 years ago - knowing little of the estate although Parker had been hyping it at the time. In 1997 I seem to have been quite positive about it while noting quite a lot of oak and rather fearsome tannins. In 2001 I was a bit down on it - lots of fruit but rather forbidding: I blamed excessive oak and wondered whether it would come into balance. My memory is that it was a touch woody but I don't seem to have noted that at the time.

The last bottle tonight is interesting: still quite dry and with noticable tannins (at least if drunk without food) but I think it has come round. It is still quite challenging but I like that. There's no shortage of fruit and a decent complexity. Quite earthy too as perhaps Volnay should be and the new oak is no longer evident. It needs drinking up - I suspect this is the end of its best-drinking plateau which might have been quite short.

One never stops being surprised by the way wines develop - I opened this feeling that it would probably be a bit past it (if it ever had a peak) and now feel its a bit too good to be slurping on my own on a Thursday night!

It's another pretty decent 1987 though - but like all but the absolute stars of the vintage it does need to be drunk.

Bin end added to Fine Wine Diary 02/12/2004   Return to top