DRC 6 Bottle Assortment, Domaine de la Romanée Conti 2002


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Tasting Notes

*La Tache*- 96 points
This is still rather reserved though determined swirling reveals a nose that is exceptionally fine and pure with fantastic aromatic detail and an almost diaphanous transparency of expression that reveals all of the kaleidoscopic La Tâche spice box nose, including anise, clove, plums, high-toned black cherry, crushed red raspberry and more. The broad, expansive and powerful flavors are still on the strict side with a mid-palate of massive depth yet the finish is round, generous, sappy and superbly complex culminating in a finish that lasts for minutes. Despite the aromatic fireworks and opulent character, there is an underlying tenderness here that will allow the '02 LT to be approachable now even if it's not entirely ready. With that said, the balance is so fine that this should easily age for another 30 years, perhaps even longer. Tasted thrice since 2011 with consistent notes. Try from 2022+

*Richebourg*- 95 points
I had not tried the '02 Riche in several years so it was interesting to see how it's progressing. The expressive though very cool nose is finally beginning to display the initial hints of maturity with the classic dried rose petal and spice nuances adding both elegance and breadth to the pretty mix of red fruit and plum scents. There is a beguiling mouth feel to the intensely mineral-driven broad-shouldered flavors that are at once powerful but sleek, all wrapped in a muscular and palate staining finish. The refined palate impression is considerably enhanced by the dense but extremely fine tannins, in fact so much so that while this is still very clearly on the way up it could actually be drunk now with pleasure. That said I would still strongly advise holding this strikingly pretty effort for another 6 to 10 years first. I should note that while I have had relatively consistent notes over the years, occasionally I land on a bottle that seems herbaceous and almost vegetal; why this variation occurs isn't clear but nonetheless it does happen. Try from 2020+

*Romanee St Vivant*- 95 points
Highly aromatic, indeed almost kaleidoscopic in the sheer breadth of aromas but it's the spice that is so remarkable though it is now cut with floral and stem hints that add depth. The medium-bodied flavors are quite fine with beautiful detail, indeed they are chiseled, and a drop dead gorgeous velvety texture that is soft in the middle yet quite firm on the exceptionally long finish that still displays the slightest hint of wood. The overall character here is rather discreet and understated and while there is plenty of character, it's clear that this is built along the lines of elegance and finesse. In this format, this should require most of 20 years to arrive at its peak. Try from 2020+

*Grands Echezeaux*- 94 points
This is still exceptionally youthful with wonderfully spicy and highly complex red pinot fruit aromas that are enhanced by subtle nuances of floral notes, damp earth, underbrush and even a hint of game. The big, muscular but utterly refined full-bodied flavors are superbly intense, reserved and backward yet not hard as there is plenty of sap that buffers the firm but remarkably sophisticated tannins on the stunningly lengthy finish. This is a very concentrated wine of real breed and impeccable balance that should age for at least 3 decades and perhaps longer. A most impressive Grands Ech that is very much still on the way up. Consistent notes. Drink: Try from 2024+

*Echezeaux*- 93 points
Still deep ruby color. A wonderfully fresh, cool and relatively restrained nose reflects notes of ultra-spicy and floral dark berry fruit nose evidences only mild hints of secondary character. The seductively rich yet attractively vibrant medium weight flavors are shaped by a still moderately firm core of ripe tannins before culminating in a relatively robust and powerful finish. While with 30+ minutes of air this could be approached with pleasure, for my taste the 2002 Ech is still very much on the way up and will likely need the better part of another 4 to 7 years before it arrives at its full apogee. Drink: Try from 2022+

*Vosne Romanee 1er Cru*- 92 points
This is still quite fresh as the expressive nose displays only hints of secondary development to the spicy and overtly floral dark berry fruit aromas. There is a lovely sense of purity and minerality to the delicious and round yet precise and intense middle weight flavors that offer fine finishing detail and persistence. This is a very pretty wine that to my taste has almost reached its peak though I underscore that it should hold for another 15 years and perhaps even longer. Good juice. Drink: Try from 2017+

Score: 92/96Allen Meadows, Burghound.com, May 2016

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