Antonio Galloni: some Chardonnay Issues


I do like Antonio Galloni, and mostly quite like his website. As I have said previously, it is heart warmingly earnest and fresher than others. This said, his latest piece (excerpt below) has a couple of disarming flaws.

Firstly,he describes Romanée Conti Montrachet and Coche-Dury’s Corton Charlemagne as benchmark wines. Well, perhaps benchmark in terms of brilliance and quality, but at well over £2000 euros a bottle, I’d say they are not very benchmark in terms of accessibility.

From Liv-Ex today the latest available vintages:

2012 Domaine de la Romanée Conti Le Montrachet @ 4,163 € per bottle

2012 J. F. Coche-Dury Corton Charlemagne @ 2,791 € per bottle

Furthermore, Antonio (earnestly) worries that because of premature oxidisation a younger generation may never get the chance to taste great white Burgundy. Erm, Antonio, I fear the sheer  cost of these great white Burgundies may mean that most generations, younger or older, may never get the chance to taste “the glory of aged white Burgundy”.

So as Antonio gazes over the wine landscape from his ivory tower, he might want to examine a section of the market more accessible to others than the super rich, or super stupid, depending on your point of view.

Not all grand crus have to cost two thousand dollars or more to express the brilliance of the Chardonnay grape. An examination of the very rarest and the most expensive, is not necessarily a useful “benchmark” reference for the readers he wishes to inform.

Personally I have never relegated white wines to second tier status, and I might argue that in may ways, the production of a truly great and profound white wine is as much or greater testament to brilliant winemaking and that holy grail that is”terroir” than the production of a red.

Essays in Chardonnay: J. F. Coche-Dury & Domaine de la Romanée-Conti


All too often, white wines are relegated to second-tier status, a sort of warm up for the reds that inevitably follow during most meals. I have long believed that white wines deserve a little more respect than that. Over the years, many of the most riveting experiences I have had have been with aged white wines. The objective of this tasting was to take a look at two of Burgundy’s benchmark whites across a number of vintages in order to gain a better understanding of how the style of the wines is expressed in those years. A few bottles were added at the last minute, so not all wines were tasted in pairs. For that reason, the notes are presented here by domaine, even though the wines were tasted from oldest to youngest in pairs where possible.

Sadly, in recent times, buying white Burgundy to cellar has become a risky proposition given the region’s well-documented issues with premature oxidation. Among other things, this means an entire generation of younger wine drinkers might never have a chance to experience the glory of aged white Burgundy. I am happy to report we did not have any prematurely oxidized wines

About matthewhayesbrognon

Wine Merchant
This entry was posted in VF - Pour encourager les autres. Bookmark the permalink.

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