Blind tasting is either an art or a parlour trick, depending on who you ask. For Bichot, the risk is that we can’t see the difference, undermining the diversity of Burgundy’s terroir or a wine’s ability to show it. For experts, the risk is being exposed as amateurs or fools. I sense I am slightly more relaxed than they are, I already know I’m an amateur.
We sip, spit and scribble. A good taster’s first instinct is probably right, but my second instinct is self-doubt. To my right Richard Hemming MW has already finished, written two articles for Purple Pages and composed a little ditty on clonal selection.
Thankfully, the wines show themselves and our assessments are pretty good. A Domaine du Pavillon Meursault 2014 shows hallmark great charm and opulence. A little known appellation, St Romain, produces a real surprise with great length and freshness. I can’t place what turns out to be a Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Mouches 2014 still hiding in itself, but the real experts argue for its potential.
I would later spend some time with Richard Hemming trying to come up with some Burgundy puns. The idea hasn’t Corton. Honestly, that’s the best we came up with.