Cazetiers classic!

Now that we’ve had a little foray elsewhere, lets get back to Burgundy! The other night I drank a fabulous bottle from a producer that I had never tried. The wine was Gevrey-Chambertin 1er cru Les Cazetiers which is a fabulous 1er cru. Cazetiers is located in the northern end of Gevrey on the “Cote St. Jacques” which is the slope including the even more famous 1er cru Clos St. Jacques. Cazetiers is just north of Clos St. Jacques and offers excellent drinking for much better value. Clos St Jacques is priced like the best grand crus and generally not affordable. Cazetiers is unfortunately still pricey, but much less so than its more famous neighbor. The most famous producer of Cazetiers is no doubt the Domaine Armand Rousseau also of Le Chambertin and Clos St Jacques fame. Their wines are sadly priced in the stratosphere… so I have to look elsewhere for fine Cazetiers. I have had good success with the bottlings from Bruno Clair and Faiveley, but I’m always on the lookout for something new. I noted some very positive reviews for a producer I was not familiar with on the website Vinous Media and determined to look for it. Luckily I was able to find a few bottles at JJ Buckley, a well known retailer in California. The producer is Domaine Henri Magnien. Currently at the helm of the domaine is Charles Magnien who is Henri Magnien’s grandson. They have good holdings along the Cote St Jacques including a sizable 1.47 hectares in Cazetiers. They also have holdings in the 1er crus of Lavaux St Jacques, Estournelles St Jacques, and Champeaux as well as the grand cru Ruchottes-Chambertin. I was able to pick up a few bottles of the Cazetiers, so I elected to try one young to see if they truly did have the promise mentioned by the professional critics. I paired the 2016 Henri Magnien Gevrey-Chambertin 1er cru Les Cazetiers with a bison meatloaf. I was not disappointed! In fact, it was better than I had dared hope. The nose was pure and classic. Lovely ripe, but fresh red berry fruits abound; followed by a sanguine/iron tang of sauvage and game. Under this is damp earth and forest floor, violet, and a hint of spice. The nose is intense and explosive out of the glass and continues to thrill the whole dinner. The palate is just as good. Wonderful depth of fruit with game and spice deliver the promise of the nose. The concentration and depth is definitely top notch 1er cru level and there is a freshness and lifting minerality that keeps the wine vibrant. The balance is perfect with suave tannins lurking, but not really poking out in any distracting way and leading into a lovely finish. Count me impressed. I was surprised it drank so well this young, but it certainly has the stuffing and balance to age gracefully also. I will be interested to follow this wine over 10+ years and see how it develops. I will definitely be on the lookout for more wines from Charles Magnien!

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