• 2005 Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru white (93-95)
  • 2005 Chassagne-Montrachet “La Romanée” 1er white (90-93)
  • 2005 Corton Blanc Grand Cru white (90-93)
  • 2005 Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru white (92-94)
  • 2005 Meursault “Genevrières” 1er white (91-93)
  • 2005 Meursault “Perrières” 1er white (92-94)
  • 2005 Montrachet Grand Cru white (94-97)
  • 2005 Pernand-Vergelesses “Sous Frétille” 1er white (88-91)
  • 2005 Puligny-Montrachet “Folatières” 1er white (91-94)

Mounir Saouma and his wife Rotem Brakin established their two-person micro-négoce in 1999. They describe the 2005 vintage as a “small harvest that gave very concentrated raw materials. Across our growers, the crop was very clean with around 13.5% potential alcohol and very ripe phenolics. The white fermentations were relatively fast and it’s really the sole point of weakness so I tried to slow things down by having very long malos. Moreover, none of the wines have ever been racked and we never pumped any of them even once plus they will be bottled without fining or filtration. I want to point out to your readers that because our cellars are very cold with naturally long malos and we treat them with the gentlest handling possible that our wines always have some residual CO2 in them and thus they should be decanted.” I asked the Le Moine team about pricing and Saouma was quick to respond saying that “for our size, we really stretched in 2005 and between both colors we’ll put out about 50 1ers and grands crus. The reason that I say stretched is that the raw materials cost us between 30 and 40% more though we only raised prices between 10 and 15% and in some cases zero. It’s also the first price hikes that we have made since 1999.” As the scores and comments confirm, this is a very impressive set of wines and overall, the Le Moine ‘05s are competitive with, if completely different from, their wonderful ‘04s. And as an aside, congratulations are in order for the late 2006 release from the Saouma/Brakir duo, which is a brand new baby boy named Aurele.

2005 Pernand-Vergelesses “Sous Frétille”: A spicy, ripe and airy nose of citrus and pronounced floral notes complements the round, rich and nicely detailed backend that offers both lovely complexity and solid punch and the only niggle is a slight touch of warmth on the mildly toasty finish. (88-91)/2010+

2005 Meursault “Genevrières”: Here the nose is very fresh and spicy with a seductive nose of hazelnut and citrus, especially lemon, that leads to vibrant and notably powerful flavors that manage to bring both excellent volume but with a sense of finesse as well, all wrapped in a wonderfully intense and explosive finish. Really good juice here. (91-93)/2012+

2005 Meursault “Perrières”: A stunning nose of subtly spiced white flower and green apple is trimmed in background hints of pain grillé that merge into sophisticated, pure and strikingly textured medium-bodied flavors oozing with both minerality and dry extract that really coats and stains the palate on the wonderfully precise and moderately strict finish. This will require a few years to really unfold and blossom but the material to do so is here. (92-94)/2013+

2005 Chassagne-Montrachet “La Romanée”: A classic La Romanée nose that runs to natural spice and exotic fruit is also trimmed with notes of pain grillé that introduce rich, full, sweet and big-bodied flavors that possess real size and weight yet this remains a wine of elegance as the finish is taut, focused and detailed. Lovely. (90-93)/2011+

2005 Puligny-Montrachet “Folatières”: (from vines of approximately 100 years of age). A drop dead gorgeous nose that is exceptionally fresh, airy and high-toned runs mostly to green fruit though nuances of stone, brioche and dried rose petal can also be noted and they are the perfect introduction for the racy, pure and vibrant flavors that brim with an intense minerality that really defines this wine from stem to stern, all wrapped in a bone dry and almost painfully intense finish. But it’s the balance and harmony of expression that really sets this apart. Definitely worth a look. (91-94)/2012+

2005 Corton Blanc: Saouma noted that there was a small percentage of pinot blanc in the vineyard. A moderately exotic fruit nose offers good freshness and concentration if not elegance though the borderline massive flavors are powerful, dense and mouth coating and this is very much consistent with a big Corton red as there is plenty of muscle here. This is an interesting wine that should offer solid cellaring potential. (90-93)/2012+

2005 Corton-Charlemagne: (from vines in Pernand). As one would reasonably expect, this is much more elegant and refined with moderate wood highlighting the fresh and stony green fruit aromas that offer real depth and leads to precise, minerally and exceptionally powerful flavors that positively drench the palate in dry extract on the hugely long finish. This is still sorting itself out but the quality of the raw materials is impeccable and it possesses impressive potential. (92-94)/2013+

2005 Bâtard-Montrachet: (from Chassagne vines). This is completely backward and revealing almost nothing aromatically except a bit of wood and the barest hints of floral aromas. The rich, full and impressively scaled flavors though are very rich and concentrated with a beguiling mouth feel that is thick and opulent but not heavy and there is actually solid detail here on the massive finish. This is frankly a tough wine to read because it is so primary but everything appears to be in place to allow this to really blossom once in bottle. (93-95)/2013+

2005 Montrachet: (from Chassagne vines). Like the Bâtard, this is also very backward and almost painfully primary with the same grudging hints of spice, floral and exotic fruit aromas that merge into fresh, rich and opulent hugely proportioned flavors that possess buckets of dry extract and simply unbelievable length. A ‘wow’ wine but again, patience required. (94-97)/2015+