Another underground producer in Burgundy, the Domaine, has been around since 1802 passing down from generation to generation, gaining and acquiring a bit more vineyards with time. We tasted here about ten years ago while looking for lesser-known producers in Burgundy and were treated to a pretty nice tasting, and while the Domaine wasn't big, they had some excellent holdings, including a few grand crus. This was when the son, Pierre-Francois, was just taking over the Domaine, and while the wines were good, it was clear they were in a transition period but had great potential. After a decade of work, Pierre-Francois is on an entirely different level from when we first met him, and the wines are exceptional, with the past few vintages being some of his best work yet.
Work in the vineyard is extensive with plowing between rows, biodynamic practices, and yield control via leaf thinning and de-budding for an optimal healthy crop. Grapes are hand-harvested and fermented in open-top temperature-controlled vats with natural yeasts and are never aged in more than 10% new oak. The idea here is to let the terroir do all the talking and let the unique expression of each site shine through in a traditional way.
The 2020 Clos de Vougeot here is the best effort to date from Capitain-Gagnerot, reflecting all the commitment and hard work that Pierre-Francois has put in over the years as the head of the family Domaine. Sourced from old vines, this is an exceptional rendition from this famed Grand Cru and is the best buy for Clos Vougeot in 2020, with the majority of bottles well over $200. We have the only bottles of this wine in the USA right now, and it is an excellent choice for the price-conscious Burgundy lover.
Jasper Morris 93-96 points! "This plot in Marei Haut was bought by Henri Capitain, great-great grandfather of Pierre-François. 70 year old vines. Rich concentrated purple in colour. Heady nose, a little bit of sun-dried cherries. Ripe pinot rather than over-ripe, absolutely filling out the middle of the palate, finishing on a fresher note. This is rather beautiful though it may become less expressive for a while in bottle."