Burgundy 2008 – the Whites


2008 was recognised internationally as the “year of the Frog”, but there was nothing green about the 2008 white Burgundies. It was also the year of Languages, so keeping in the spirit of the occasion; I would like to add that the whites were Wysmakowanej in Polish, 센세이셔널한 in Korean and DaÉ—i in Hausa. But for those who don’t have a double first in languages from Cambridge or have to do the half time talk at Arsenal, the whites were simply superb.

When I tried the wines last year from barrel, I thought they were good, but I tended to sing the praises of the reds instead. I think this was partially due to how surprised and pleased we were with their quality.

There was no doubt that these succulent whites have immense charm and will be earlier to drink than 2007 and 2006 wines. Importantly, they are not lacking in acidity and it is the impeccable balance of these wines that will make them approachable at a young age and drink for a further ten.

Re-tasting the wines last week was nothing short of a pleasure. The wines that really stood out were Jean-Philippe Fichet’s Meursaults. Marc Colin St Aubins are sensational and offer such value for money. Showing that classic steeliness, these are St Aubins you can lay down.

I have been fortunate to be able to taste Sauzet for many years and in 2008 they have produced one of their greatest vintages. They continue to be the benchmark for great white Burgundy.

The Jobard wines were traditionally never released for tasting in the UK at this time as they were never deemed ready. The 2008’s are abiding examples of how different the wines are now that Antoine Jobard has taken over the reins. The wines have more of an upfront elegance to them, but still retain the concentration that the wines are fabled for. Clients have always asked when Jobard wines will be ready for drinking, merchants have always tried to skirt around the subject; but these wines will be ready over the next 3 years and drinking for a further 15.

Please do not miss out on any of the 2008 Chablis, Jean Paul Droin in particular has captured all that sets this unique region apart . I have always thought of an atypical Chablis as an oxymoron. Chablis at its best should be classic and that is precisely what the 2008 are.

I cannot recommend buying this vintage enough and it will fit in very well between drinking your 2005 and 2007’s.