Rare “Caviar”: 2008 & 2014 White Burgundy from an Understated Master

Posted on: 01/22/19 7:21 PM


Domaine Remi Rollin remains a touchstone for anyone who looks for elegance, tension and freshness in their wines. The mineral verve and understated balance that the entire range exudes has attracted an ardent following. I still recall the early days of my tenure here, when we could offer 2002, 2005, 2006 and 2007, as we wished, from the catalogues of Neal’s inventory.

Today, not so much.

There’s a combination of factors driving up the demand on producers like Remi Rollin. First, price. The average price for average Burgundy has gone up significantly since 2009. Global demand far outstrips supply and subsequently value has exploded. Appellations like Pernand, Auxey and St. Aubin have proved worthy refuges for those seeking to stay in the Burgundy game without emptying their bank accounts.

Second, the watchwords for style these days are words like “elegance,” “finesse” and “mineral.” Gone are the days when sheer size and intensity were what got everyone’s attention. As such producers like Roumier, Mugnier, Mugneret-Gibourg, and Roulot are on everyone’s shortlist.

Lastly, it could be argued that in addition to price forcing Burgundy buyers to look in unconventional villages for value, those same villages have benefited from global warming. Let’s be honest. St. Aubin and Pernand in the 80’s and earlier often struggled to get adequate ripeness. Green, harsh wines dominated. Today, the producers have surely benefited from advances in viticulture and the cellar, but the general warming trend hasn’t hurt.

Then you come to Remi Rollin, who alongside Dubreuil-Fontaine, represents the best of Pernand. The wine shave a mineral intensity and impeccable balance that seems to hit all the sweet spots that Burgundy buyers are demanding these days. As such, Rollin’s wines have become allocated to the bottle. And, in many cases, allocations are mere bottles.

Nonetheless, I have acquired a small private cellar with some real gems at great pricing. The bulk of the wine here is from the epic white Burgundy vintages 2008 and 2014, though there is a little red 2008 as well.

I can’t stress enough just how rare an opportunity this is or how good these wines are. Load up – these will sell through very quickly, I predict!

Posted in Burgundy List By Ian Halbert