“Superb,” “Succulent” Red Burgundies under $35

When we first met Gautier Desvignes he was 12. We happened across the Desvignes family domaine in 1998, during our year spent living in Burgundy. We’ve been fans of their rugged, affordable, delicious red Burgundies for over two decades. Five years ago the twenty-something Gautier took over operations, and the quality has dramatically improved.

And so it warms our hearts to see the Propriété Desvignes begin to receive the acclaim it deserves. Neal Martin of Vinous recently described their wines as having “wonderful balance,” calling them “excellent,” and “really quite superb.” The Wine Advocate’s William Kelley wrote an extensive piece last month on the Côte Chalonnaise. In it he praised the Desvignes wines as “succulent,” “elegant,” and “a decided success,” and even named Gautier one of the region’s “Five Emerging Talents to Watch.”

Kelley’s notes are on the 2017s, which will be included in next month’s October Futures. But we’ve already got some 2015 and 2016s in stock, and they’re drinking beautifully. Give them a try, and see what all the fuss is about.

Desvignes Givry 2015: $25
Classic, punchy red Burgundy that drinks far above its pricetag. The nose is ripe and beautifully textured, with notes of cherry jam, violets, stones, and baking spices. The mouth is fresh and sturdy but not at all harsh, with a rich, juicy attack followed by a smooth, perfectly balanced, mouthfeel.

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Desvignes Givry 2016: $26
From a younger, less sun-baked vintage, the 2016 drinks a bit fresher than the 2015. The nose is ripe and unusually complex, showing tapenade, maillard reaction, thyme and blackberries; the mouth is ripe and bursting, with notes of cherry compote and dried roses. Pair with cheeses at cocktail hour.

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Desvignes 1er Le Vernoy 2016: $32
2016 was the debut vintage for the cuvée, and we think it’s likely to become a favorite. The nose is very pretty, with bright fruits and notes of strawberry, violets, and earth. The mouth is intricate and delightful, “light on its toes” as Neal Martin puts it, with very fine tannins and a pleasant clean finish. If your idea of Givry is rustic and hearty, this will cause you to expand your definition.

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