Nicolas Potel Bonnes Mares 2006
My in-bottle tastings of 2006s have confirmed it is a very good to sometimes excellent but highly variable vintage. As was described in considerable detail in Issue 29, a lot of things had to go right for the best wines to be made and some growers were either good enough, or lucky enough, to do just that. Most wines scored within their predicted ranges and while there were a few surprises, and in both directions, the average 2006 is destined to make for some extremely pleasant drinking over the next 20 years. Food Match: turkey, roasts, red meat, beef.
The Potel 2006 Bonnes Mares is another case of truth in terroir, as it leads with a site-typical savagery of tart red fruits, pungent herbs, and smoked meats. Red currant, raspberry, sage, wormwood, sassafras, licorice, black tea, white pepper, and ham hock are all contributory to the rich, dense-packed, invigorating display, culminating in a finish that practically gangs up on your palate. This is not where to look for the gentle or subtle side of 2006 Burgundian Pinot, and it may never shed a certain rusticity of tannin. I would anticipate at least a dozen years of excitement from bottles. The wine was actually a bit reduced and needed time to gather its formidable forces before it really landed the first punch.Score: 94. —David Schildknecht, December 2009.
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Medium red. Pungent minerality, brown spices, smoked meat, bacon rind, pepper and musky underbrush on the nose. Then quite tight and backward in the mouth, with youthfully imploded menthol, spice and pepper flavors currently dominating the wine's underlying fruit. Finishes dry and quite tannic, with a whiff of white pepper. This serious, uncompromising wine is going to need a good decade of patience. 92+Score: 92. —Stephen Tanzer, April 2009.
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