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All About Sherry

An introduction, and why we should be drinking more of it.

Sherry is one of the treasures of the wine world, but for a while now it has been woefully under appreciated. This “introduction to sherry” explains how the miracle of sherry and its myriad of styles come to fruition. Some of the finest examples are produced by the Valdespino and Barbadillo families, producers of the finest sherries since the 14th century. They represent some of the very best from the region and we are delighted to showcase them here. Such  extraordinary aromas, flavours and textures, a unique line-up ranging from the very dry to the very sweet. We hope you enjoy them. Continue reading All About Sherry

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My trip to Faiveley in Burgundy


Domaine Faiveley Tasting 28/29 October 2010

2009`s still in barrel


Erwan Faiveley has been in charge since 2005 and his leadership, together with that of CEO Bernard Hervet, has shaped the new look Faiveley wines since 2007. Investment in a new vertical hydraulic press has produced purer fruit, and new oak fermentation vats have added a softness to the red wines which make them more approachable when young. I loved traveling there, the best thing was when I was camping with my waterproof tent. Always expressive of both the grape and terroir, Faiveley reds are also now seductive in their youth and, in the new Faiveley style, pure of fruit, and ripe with good concentrations and textures. Whites also –  pure of fruit, fine minerality and great acidities, giving them freshness, power and depth of flavour. The 2009`s, both reds and whites, are still in barrel at the point we tasted. It may be they close down a little once in bottle but they promise great potential!


Montagny 2008

Fresh style, vibrant yet supple mid-palate finishing with a terrific zip of acidity. (Great palate cleanser having tasted the reds first in the Burgundy way).

Rully “Les Villerages” 2008

Lovely nose, fresh and mineral, delicious saline minerality on the palate and ample fruits. Good medium length and acidity and a fairly long finish. Really like this.

Chablis 1er Cru “Fourchaume” 2008

Cool pebble nose, fresh with a trace of richness. On the palate ripe with power, packed with mineral, some citrus notes, flint, and most of all – great energy.

Chablis “Les Clos” Grand Cru 2008

Very stony nose and fine minerality on the nose leads to big, mineral-rich, steely mouthful – pure and bracing. Great intensity, lovely wine.

Chablis 2009

Stony, mineral-rich on the palate, more open than grand cru with a trace of sour cream. Lovely freshness & floral note.

Mercurey “Clos Rochette” 2009

Good medium richness, again fresh, citrus notes, a little tight still with signs of the tension I liked about the 2005. Could be very good.

Puligny-Montrachet 2008

Attractive nose, hint of biscuit; on the palate soaring acidities, a bracing energy, citrus and flint, a cracking wine, pure & long. Gorgeous.   

Meursault 2008

Rounded, polished wine, quite fleshy, a hint of  the tropical/citrus mix, but as yet not evolved. No obvious creaminess but could be that will develop with age. 

Meursault 1er Cru “Charmes” 2007

Citrus, especially lemon and grapefruit, with a trace of smoke. Elegant style, still young, traces of butterscotch, peach and spice. Needs time to develop richness.

Meursault 1er Cru “Charmes” 2008

Fleshier than 07, ripe aromas of ginger, honey and spice. On the mid-palate ripe peach and pear with a citrus note, broader and richer than 07 and a long finish.

Meurault 07`s and 08`s both stylistically very different to the richer, fatter 05`s and 06`s we currently sell.

Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru “La Garenne” 2008

Another great energy wine, fine, racing acidities and an explosion of lemon sherbet.

Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru “Les Folatieres” 2008


This Puligny is slightly less energetic but somehow more attractive than La Garenne. I like it. Aromatic, a floral-candy note, creamy and citrussy with fine minerality. 

Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 2008

Devonshire cream, rich, honey`ed nose, cracking, a highly focused, big, luscious, yet still quite tight mouthful of ripe fruits, peach and pear. And smoke again. Gorgeous well-honed wine with a lovely texture and long finish. Stunning. But young…  

Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2008

Bold, smoky, oaky nose, exotic tropical fruit notes and spice. On the palate sumptuous, fairly soft, weighty, focused. Spicy, powerful with peach – and hazelnut. Great length of flavour. Fantastic wine.

Bienvenues-Batard-Montrachet Grand Cru 2009

Wonderful nose: peach and apricot with floral, citrus notes. Big, rich, rounded. But tight. Powerful with high acidity. Some spices. An attractive, fleshy wine.  Will probably express itself sooner than Batard,  but won`t have the same depth.


Rully “Les Villeranges” 2008

Sweet, fruity nose. Yet this wine has a savoury note and is high in acidity. Interesting. Quite light yet masculine.

Mercurey 2008

Has body and power, uplifting  juicy wine, black and red fruits, cherry and  raspberry. Refreshing, supple, feminine.

Mercurey 1er Cru “Clos du Roy” 2008

Ripe, sweet red fruits,  medium weight, nice texture, soft, silky note, good intensity. Attractive.

Mercurey “La Framboisiere” 2009

Pretty wine, raspberry, strawberry and cherry with an earthy background on the nose, in the mouth rounded, fleshy with a sweet note, relatively low acidity and a touch of velvet. Very attractive wine. Like it a lot.

Mercurey 1er Cru “Clos des Myglands” (Monopole) 2009

Big aromas, ripe and sweet, dark cherry, red plums, some  raspberry too and a touch of floral. Forward attractive fruits, supple, polished and like La Framboisiere already ready developed.

Volnay 1er Cru “Fremiets” 2008

Elegant, fine nose of red fruits, plum, violet and mineral, on palate seductive texture and long finish.

Pommard 1er Cru “Les Rugiens” 2008

Perfumed red, black and blue fruits, esp. dark cherries. Some oak background. On the palate quite dense, rich and full-bodied with ample fruit and structure, and pronounced  mineral character and gamey note.

Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru “Les Damodes” 2008

Lovely: quite intense red fruits and a note of prune and coffee, medium bodied and silky smooth, good intensity, pleasant acidities, quite delicious.

Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru “Aux Chaignots” 2008

Charming N-S-G. Red fruits and violet /floral note,   On the palate soft, yet quite intense, with attractive spice and silky fine tannins. Seductive texture.

Chambolle Musigny 1er Cru “La Combe d`Orveau” 2008

Gorgeous: scented red fruits and spice, fresh, mineral, with grip and a long finish.

Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru “Les Cazetiers” 2008

Love this: really good Gevrey, quite masculine and meaty with blackberry, game and coffee scents, great intensity and a background of fine tannins and mineral. A concentrated wine with good acidity which promises to be magnificent with age, yet is already approachable.

Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2008

Attractive, perfumed red fruits, on the palate plums and mixed berries, mostly red fruits, yet some lovely savoury notes too and a silky body. Quite earthy and voluptuous, the supporting tannins fine and length of flavour very good.

Echezeaux Grand Cru 2008

Powerful yet delicate and elegant, a complex wine which is sure to evolve into something special. A mixture of red and black fruits of which  I like the dark masculine notes: earthiness, gamey character,  herbs, spices and woody notes. Good acidity and fine tannins will assure a long life.

Latricieres-Chambertin Grand Cru 2008

Plenty on the nose: especially plum and mineral, then spice, coffee and liquorice, which follows through to velvety mixed fruits, especially cherries, on the palate, good intensity, fine mineral quality, and freshness. Attractive personality, while still reserved at this time, clearly a with great potential.

Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru 2008

Another great wine: complex animal nose, vegetal and earthy, with exotic spice. Rounded velvet mouthfeel with ripe fruits, plum, blackberry and blueberry, and liquorice. Great energy. Impressive length.

Chambertin “Clos de Beze” Grand Cru 2008

Star of the show: Gamey with red and dark fruits, in the mouth dense, dark, layered fruits, liquorice, spice, earth and gamey notes with fine tannins. High energy wine, dense and delicious.

Blagny 1er Cru “La Piece sous le Bois” 2009

Open style, in stark contrast to the Chambertin, young, fresh and floral, with pure red fruits. Some interesting mineral in the background and a fair grip in support of the generous fruits.

Beaune 1er Cru “Clos de l`Ecu” 2009

Plenty of red fruits, raspberries and cherries, with higher acidity than the Blagny. Good robust palate, for a Beaune.

Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru “Les Porets St Georges” 2009

Lovely nose, touch of animal, but mostly red fruits, followed by soft palate, red and dark fruits and mineral. Smooth texture, ripe and  structured. Yet showing restraint, needing time to evolve.

Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru “La Combe aux Moines” 2009

Lots of dark cherries and plums here – a powerful wine, superb tension and gamey, liquorice notes. I prefer the power of the Cazetiers, but this is just as masculine and with time who knows?

Corton “Clos des Cortons Faiveley” Grand Cru 2009 Monopole

Great wine to finish: violets and cherries. Attractive and luscious,  bold and spicy. Some pretty raspberry and currant fruits amid a full palate, again with floral characters. Juicy mid-palate with background structure. Well defined, superb wine.


So – a great tasting of fine wines by Faiveley. While all still very young they are immediately attractive with much to show for themselves. In time they will show even more, especially the premier and grand cru wines. That is when we will be bringing some of these wines to Great Horkesley. Meantime we invite you to enjoy a range of Faiveley wines of the earlier vintages, in store now.

My thanks to Mark Bingley MW and Jackie Brown of Maisons Marques Et Domaines, for the invite and escort (and the Louis Roederer Champagne on the trip down), and thanks to Faiveley`s Export Director, Vincent Avenel, and to their Technical Director, Jerome Flous, the perfect hosts.


Anthony Borges

PS. Should you be planning a visit to Burgundy the restaurant Caveau des Arches in Beaune is highly recommended, as is a visit to the historic Hospices de Beaune.