Type: Red Wine Volume: 750ml
Country: France Region: Burgundy
Ratings and Tasting Notes:(AM=91) This beauty hadn't come my way since 2003 and time has been very good to it. While the completely secondary, spice and earth-suffused nose (though almost no sous-bois) reflects the elevated warmth of the vintage, it is not really surmature. There is fine richness and mid-palate concentration to the lightly stony medium-bodied flavors that possess a velvety texture before culminating in a still moderately robust if not actually rustic finish. This is not only drinking very well but is a wine that should continue to do so. A fine '76. (AG=91) And what to drink with such robust food? A bottle of the 1976 Robert Ampeau Volnay Santenots turned out to be just what the doctor ordered. Ampeau¡¦s wines develop at a glacial pace, and this beauty was no exception. Youthful red in color, it offered bright red cherry and floral aromas with more spicy (however closed), brooding flavors on the palate. The red cherry and dark berry fruit were shrouded beneath a very firm but polished cloak of tannins. As the wine was still closed and unyielding, with noteworthy but balanced acidity providing freshness and lift, it seems to be frozen in time, floating in some sort of vinous (no pun intended) suspended animation. The terroir of Santenots (characterized by a thin, red, iron-rich, heavy clay soil lying just above subsoil of hard limestone) tends to result in bigger wines than is typical for Volnay, so it¡¦s more than likely Ampeau¡¦s winemaking style and the nature of the 1976 vintage (a hot, dry summer led to powerful, tannic wines) that account for this wine¡¦s personality. Impressively, this remarkably youthful wine exhibited no roasted or cooked aromas and flavors, and matched extremely well with the lamb broth, the stew and the heart preparations.