August 24, 2020
Rethinking Value in the Noble Pinot Noir. The Little Overachieving Burgundy of the North That is “Nothing Short of a Revelation.” High Toned, Old World Charm Delivered Under $28. Just Arrived!
“…Richoux’s wines…defined by silky smooth tannins and purity of fruit that ranks alongside a fine Premier Cru from the Côte d’Or without the price tag…Load up on the 2015s or await the very promising 2017s.” –Neal Martin
We are always on the prowl for value wines that over deliver, something that is not often seen with the noble Pinot Noir. Well, two years ago, we had the good fortune to come across one of those rare “revelation” value wines through our good friends at Polaner Selections. It was the 2015 Richoux Irancy and it sold out within moments after the offering went out. Turns out we were not alone on this best kept secret; it is a quiet favorite among Burgheads and many of those who work in the trade, much in the way that Domaine Dureuil-Janthial is for white Burgundy.
Well, there is some good news to report: we went back to the Polaner to taste the new release once again, and it is as Neal Martin points out, the "2017s are very promising," and like the 2015s, they are value reds to "load up" on. We are now pleased to present the 2017 Thierry Richoux Irancy Bourgogne Rouge at the special price of $27.99. This is, once again, a rare value red that offers a taste of Burgundy pedigree and finesse at an approachable price; in fact, it is a $28 village level Bourgogne rouge that can age two decades. Better yet, it is one of those little overachieving wines from one of Burgundy’s most respected producers of the north that you might not know.
It is here in the picturesque village of Irancy that the Richoux family has been producing old-vine Pinot Noir on the prized kimmeridgian and limestone soils since 1610. In fact, with the domaine’s close proximity to Chablis, it is Thierry Richoux who has been called on to help with the prized wines of Dauvissat. In 2017, just 5,400 cases were made for the world and we were fortunate enough to uncork a bottle this week for the fourth time. It is a near-perfect expression of a generic appellation wine delivering immediate enjoyment with a touch of sophistication from the noble varietal - sans the crazy expensive Côte d’Or price tag, and thus, our enthusiasm for this value gem. This is an overachieving appellation wine with a deep respect for organics that has finally been recognized by critics correctly; as Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate stated it best, “Thierry Richoux's Irancy's are nothing short of a revelation…This is a domaine with which all serious Burgundy lovers will want to acquaint themselves, and the wines come warmly recommended.”
While collectors and enthusiast continue to scour the earth for more limited releases of Premier and Grand Cru offerings from the historic 2015 and 2016 vintages, the arrivals from 2017 (and 2018) give us additional reasons to be excited about Burgundy. We appreciate these words from Neal Martin on the vintage, “The 2017 reds are very good, often excellent, and from time to time, bloody awesome… the reds have a lot of charm, will give a lot of pleasure and will surprise many with their longevity. Nobody makes Pinot Noir like Burgundy.” Regardless of hype or points, what is important here is the fact that this is a healthy, charming vintage with balancing energy and there is exceptional quality to be had at all levels, including the appellation and village level wines of Burgundy. We are once again excited about the high quality of the Bourgogne level wines that are both approachable on the palate and the wallet - and that is what today’s offering celebrates.
ADDITIONAL NOTES AND REVIEWS
“As I wrote last year, Thierry Richoux's Irancy's are nothing short of a revelation. While one might assume that this northerly appellation would be the source of tangy, light-bodied wines, the amphitheater of hills that surrounds this charming medieval village are in fact capable of producing a decidedly virile, characterful style of Pinot Noir. Indeed, in sunny vintages such as 2015 and 2003, Irancy can be decidedly rich and gourmand. Richoux realize's the region's potential, limiting his yields, harvesting by hand and raising his wines for two years: the first year in foudre and tank, the second in smaller oak barrels. This fastidious approach combined with several unusually concentrated vintages means that there is a wealth of superb wine waiting in the wings at this excellent address—waiting, because Richoux believes in aging his Irancy for several years before selling it. This is a domaine with which all serious Burgundy lovers will want to acquaint themselves, and the wines come warmly recommended. 2017 is the first vintage in which Domaine Richoux—where Thierry is gradually handing over the reins to sons Gabin and Félix—was certified organic.” –Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
2017 Thierry Richoux Irancy Bourgogne Rouge
Christopher Deas, Italian Wine Merchants: "This is once again an example of a generic appellation delivering immediate enjoyment with a touch of sophistication from the noble varietal - sans the crazy expensive premier and grand cru price tag. Thus, the enthusiastic review of this value gem. It is yet another example where many critics get it wrong and that Burgundy is simply rated on a different scale – although, we have to hand it to The Wine Advocate for recognizing the allure of this wine and producer. This is an overachieving appellation wine and what you should know here is that the grapes are sourced from thirty-five-year-old vines on Kimmeridgian limestone soils. It is typically a rustic and mineral driven expression of Pinot Noir, but in a warm, ripe vintage like 2015 and 2017 (and 2018 for that matter), there is a layer of texture and juicy fruit that sits on this backbone of structure. In the glass, this wine screams Burgundy – with explosive red fruit, crushed flowers, earth, smoke and minerality – it is another one of those high-toned wines where the aromatics alone are worth the price of admission. On the palate, there is red fruit galore – concentrated cherry rinds, red raspberries, rose petals, that are accented by licorice, charcoal with a spine of herbs, sizzling minerality, and acidity. It is juicy, but, yet the wine is so fresh and light on its feet. There is an inner perfume to the wine that echoes across the palate for a long finish. But here is the tip, we treat this wine like a Chianti, and serve it with steak (from the Konro grill – yakitori style) – as Aubert de Villaine states, steak and Pinot are a brilliant pair. This is a rare $28 Bourgogne that will age 25 years but is approachable today. Our recommendation on this wine and producer remains – buy by the case.”
William Kelley, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: “Offering up aromas of spicy cherry fruit, woodsmoke and rich soil tones, this Irancy is medium to full-bodied, ample and supple, with fine but youthfully assertive tannins, succulent acids and a persistent finish. This is a charming wine that will be accessible comparatively young.” 8/19
If you would like to take advantage of this offer we are asking that you email orders back to me at email@example.com, connect with your portfolio manager or mention receipt of this offer if calling the store. All orders are subject to confirmation.
All my best,