La CHABLISIENNE Chablis Class and Tasting (9/16/19)


On Monday, September 16 at 7pm, please join me in welcoming my friend and Burgundy expert extraordinaire David Smith to The Wine School at l’Alliance Française for a tag-team class (with me) and tasting of the wines of La Chablisienne. La Chablisienne is that not-as-rare-as-may-seem co-op that is making top quality wines that compete with those from the best domaines. This however is that most rare class where all white wines will be served.

The line-up includes:
Chablisienne Petit Chablis Pas Si Petit 2017
Chablisienne La Pierrelee Chablis 2015
Chablisienne La Sereine Chablis 2015
Chablisienne Les Venerables Chablis 2015
Chablisienne Cote De Lechet Chablis 1er Cru 2015
Chablisienne Vaillons Chablis 1er Cru 2015
Chablisienne Fourchaume Chablis 1er Cru 2017
Chablisienne Vaulorent 1er Cru Chablis  2015
Chablisienne Les Clos Chablis Grand Cru 6/cs 2015
Chablisienne Les Preuses Chablis Grand Cru 6/cs 2016
Chablisienne Valmur Chablis Grand Cru 6/cs 2013
Chablisienne Grenouilles (6/cs) Chablis Grand Cru 2014

This La Chablisienne event will cost $40.00 per person (cash or check) or $42.11 regular. The class meets on Monday, September 16 at 7pm at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Susan at 713-854-7855 or coburnsusan2@gmail.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd. (77006), l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

ABOUT LA CHABLISIENNE
The story began in 1923. Under the leadership of Abbé Balitrand, a number of winegrowers joined forces to better withstand the economic difficulties of the period. Together, in the middle of the Chablis vineyards, they created a cooperative winery to market their wines. Until the mid-1950s, the members of the cooperative delivered their production to La Chablisienne, who was then responsible for creating the blends and for selling them, mainly to wholesalers. However, La Chablisienne wanted to go much further and create a style of its own. So it was decided that the harvest would be delivered in the form of musts (unfermented juice), a particularity that has become the trademark of the house and giving it total control over the winemaking processes. There is constant information sharing between the winegrowers and the technicians, linking the quality of the musts to the parcels that produced the grapes thus ensuring the best possible technical guidance. La Chablisienne, in true pioneer spirit, has never ceased to meet a wide range of challenges in areas as diverse as winegrowing and winemaking, human resources and marketing. It is the meticulous work of all those involved that gives wines which constantly improve with the passage of time.



If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

UPCOMING WINE EVENTS
09/12 – Thursday … Greek Wines with Ted Diamantis  at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
09/16 – Monday … La Chablisiene Chablis Tasting (with David Smith and me) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
09/23 – Monday … Save the Date
09/26 – Thursday …  ECHOS Chef’s Dinner at the Crystal Ballroom at the Rice  (http://echos-houston.org/events/chefs-dinner/)
09/30 – Monday … Domaine Jessiaume Burgundy Tasting (importer Bertrand Leulliette and me) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
10/03 – Thursday … Women Of Wine Grand Tasting at the Czech Museum   (http://www.wowcharities.org/events-happy-hours/2019-grand-tasting-october-3/)
10/07 – Monday … Mostly White Burgundy Tasting (Fontaine Gagnard, Pernod Bellicard, etc. – David Smith and me) –  at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
10/14 – Monday … Ch. Maris class and tasting (all organic and biodynamic wines – pure, fresh, and exciting) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
10/17 – Thursday … Royal Oporto Tasting (with David Smith and me) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
10/21 – Monday … Bordeaux Value (sponsored by Sopexa) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
12/02 – Monday … Symington (Graham’s, Dow’s, Cockburn’s, Quinta do Vesuvio) Vintage Port Tasting at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française

In addition, we’ll be scheduling some sparkling wine and Champagne classes and another general Port class as well as at least one dinner.

Albert Bichot Wine Class and Tasting

Featuring assistant technical director Matthieu Mangenot

On Monday, June 17 at 7pm, please join me (Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton) in welcoming Albert Bichot assistant technical director Matthieu Mangenot (bio below) to The Wine School at l’Alliance Française for a tasting of the wines of Albert Bichot. Albert Bichot is a Burgundy negoçiant that operates more like a group of related domaines and is, in fact, a big vineyard owner with four estates in Chablis and the Cote d’Or (plus one each in the Cote Chalonnaise and Beaujolais) making world class wines.

The line-up includes:
Bichot Cremant de Bourgogne NV
Bichot Chablis 2015
Bichot Domaine Long Depaquit Chablis 2015
Bichot Chablis Vaucopins 1er cru 2016
Bichot Ch. Gris Nuits St. Georges Les Terrasses Blanc 2016
Bichot Meursault Charmes 1er cru 2016
Bichot Puligny Montrachet Perrieres 1er cru 2016
Bichot Bourgogne Pinot Noir Vigne Vielles 2016
Bichot Gevrey Chambertin Les Murots 2016
Bichot Morey Saint Denis Les Sorbets 1er Cru 2016
Bichot Ch. Gris Nuits St. Georges Monopole 1er Cru  2016
Bichot Chambolle Musigny Chaibots 1er Cru 2016
Bichot Corton Clos Marechaudes Grand Cru 2016

This Albert Bichot Tasting will cost $70.00 per person (cash or check) or $73.68 regular. The class meets on Monday June 17 at 7pm at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Susan at 713-854-7855 or coburnsusan2@gmail.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd. (77006), l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

About Matthieu Mangenot:
Immediately after completing his studies, Matthieu Mangenot has worked with other companies, notably in South Africa, Lebanon and Bordeaux. After his first experience in the Mâconnais – Beaujolais region, he joined Albert Bichot in 2007, as manager of the Domaine Long-Depaquit estate in Chablis. His dual training as an agronomist and an oenologist allows him to have a comprehensive approach to winemaking, from vineyard management to bottling. Through in-depth work in the vineyards, he puts the grape at the heart of his strategy of showcasing the terroirs and supports a non-interventionist approach at the winery. In 2019, he continues to pursue his career at Albert Bichot, having taken over the position of Assistant Technical Director at the head office in Beaune. His knowledge of soil formation and his pragmatic, transversal approach to the development of the House of productions, while respecting its concern for authenticity and sustainability.

SAVE THE DATES:
06/22/19 – Bear Dalton’s Pop-Up Champagne and Bordeaux Wine Dinner in the Parish Hall at the Church of the Epiphany (Corner of Gessner and Bissonnet). Bear Will be most ably assisted by Chef Joan and Chef Denise and a host of others.
06/24/19 – Annual Rosé Class and Tasting at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
07/08/19 – Adelsheim Tasting with David Adelsheim
07/29/19 – Bordeaux Refresh benefitting ECHOS

Domaine de La Pousse d’Or Wine Class and Tasting

On Monday, June 3 at 7pm, please join me in welcoming my friend and Burgundy expert extraordinaire David Smith to The Wine School at l’Alliance Française for a tag-team class (with me, Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton) and tasting of the wines of Domaine de la Pousse d’Or. Pousse d’Or is the rare Burgundy domaine making world class wine in both the Cote de Beaune and the Cote de Nuits. These fifteen 2015s are extraordinary wines that are showing beautifully now.

The line-up includes:
Pousse d’Or Santenay Clos Tavannes 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Volnay en Caillerets (Amphora) 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Volnay en Caillerets (Classic) 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Volnay Clos d’Audignac Volnay 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Volnay Clos de la Bousse d’Or 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Volnay Clos de 60 Ouvrees 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Pommard Jarollieres 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny 2015
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny les Groseilles 2015
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny les Charmes 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny les Feusselottes 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Clos du Roi Corton Grand Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny les Amoureuses 1er Cru 2015
Pousse d’Or Puligny Montrachet Cailleret 1er Cru 2015

This Pousse d’Or Tasting will cost $80.00 per person (cash or check) or $84.21 regular. The class meets on Monday June 3 at 7pm at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Bear at 713-854-7855 or BearDalton@mac.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd. (77006), l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

ABOUT DOMAINE de la POUSSE d’OR
Originally created in 1954, the Domaine de la Pousse d’Or has long been among my favorite domaines of Burgundy. I first tasted two of the Volnays (Bousse d’Or and Clos de 60 Ouvrees) in the early 1980s and got to know the range of wines better tasting with Becky Wasserman (who was then their broker) in 1986. I have tasted at the domaine for the last sixteen years. Patrick Landanger purchased the property in 1997. Over all that time, I have watched Pousse d’Or grow from a Volnay specialist with some Santenay and Pommard to include vines on the hill of Corton (1999), in Puligny Montrachet (2004), and in Chambolle and Morey (2008). At this time Spec’s is able to purchase sixteen wines (one village appellation, twelve 1er crus, and three grand crus) from the estate, all of which are consistently excellent. (There are two wines – Chevalier Montrachet and Corton Bressandes – we don’t get yet.)

SAVE THE DATES:
05/31/19 – Domaine Pegau Tasting with Laurence Feraud at theWine School at l’Alliance Française
06/03/19 – Domaine de la Pousse d’Or 2015 Class and Tasting with Bear Dalton and David Smith at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
06/17/19 – Albert Bichot Burgundy Class and Tasting with Bichot’s assistant technical director Matthieu Mangenot at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française
06/22/19 – Bear Dalton’s Pop-Up Champagne and Bordeaux Wine Dinner in the Parish Hall at the Church of the Epiphany (Corner of Gessner and Bissonet)
06/24/19 – Annual Rosé Class and Tasting at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française

Taste Domaine de la POUSSE d’OR 2014s with owner Patrick Landanger

Normally, my class invitations start out “Please join me, Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton for a tasting of …” or words to that effect. Not this time.*
So on Wednesday March 14th at 7pm, please join Burgundy importer David Smith along with Domaine de la Pousse d’Or owner Patrick Landanger and new general manager Benoit Landanger (son of Patrick) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française for a tasting of ten wines from the Domaine de la Pousse d’Or.

Originally created in 1954, Domaine de la Pousse d’Or has long been among my favorite domaines of Burgundy. I first tasted two of the Volnays in the early 1980s and got to know the range of wines better tasting with Becky Wasserman (who was then their broker) in 1986. I’ve been tasting at the domaine for the last fifteen years. Patrick Landanger purchased the property in 1997 and immediately began investing in bothe the physical plant and the vineyards. Since then, I have watched as Pousse d’Or improved in quality and grew from a Volnay specialist with some Santenay and Pommard to include vines on the hill of Corton (1999), in Puligny Montrachet (2004), and in Chambolle and Morey (2008). At this time Spec’s is able to purchase thirteen wines (one village appellation, nine 1er crus, and three grand crus) from the estate, all of which are consistently excellent. (There are four wines we don’t get – yet.) We’ll taste through ten Pousse d’Or crus from the fine 2014 vintage including nine reds and one white with special attention paid to the specificity of place and process of each wine.

The line up:
Pousse d’Or Santenay Clos Tavannes 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Volnay en Caillerets 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Volnay Clos de la 60 Ouvrees 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Volnay Clos de la Bousse d’Or 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Pommard Jarollieres 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Corton Clos du Roi Grand Cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny 2014
Pousse d’Or Chambolle Musigny les Amoureuses 1er cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2014
Pousse d’Or Puligny Montrachet Clos le Caillerets 1er cru 2014

Domaine de la Pousse d’Or 2014 will cost $50.00 per person (Cash or Check) or $52.63 regular. The class will meet at 7pm on Wednesday March 14 at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Susan at 713-854-7855 or coburnsusan2@gmail.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd., l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

*I am will be in the hospital on Wednesday recovering from surgery to reconnect my previously rerouted plumbing. I hate to miss this because I love these wines but this is a major step forward in my healing process.

ALBERT BICHOT 2015 Class and Tasting

ALBERT BICHOT is unique in terms of negoçiants in Burgundy with a business model more that of the owner of multiple domaines than a traditional negoçiant. Whether the grapes are estate grown or from other vineyards, Bichot farms their grapes and makes all their wines in their own wineries. No out-side wine is brought-in to be blended-and-bottled. Here the line between a negoçiant and a domaine gets very blurry. Based in Beaune but with wineries in Chablis, Vosne Romanee, Nuits St. Georges, Beaune, Pommard, and Beaujolais, Albert Bichot operates more like a collection of passionately run domaines … but domaines that have all the resources they could need. As to the vintage, 2015 (like 2005 before it) is that great vintage across most of France referred to as “the rising tide that lifts all boats.” In this tasting we have a unique producer making great wine from grapes it grows in top terroirs in a great vintage.

On Monday, February 12th at 7pm, please join me (Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française for a Tasting of Albert Bichot’s 2015s. We’ll taste through all 15 available 2015 wines including 8 whites (3 Chablis and 5 Cote d’Or) and 7 reds (2 Cru Beaujolais and 5 Cote d’Or) with special attention paid to the specificity of place and process of each wine. The tasting includes 5 grand crus.

The line up:
Bichot A.C. Chablis
Bichot Saint Romain Blanc
Bichot Santenay Blanc
Bichot Long Depaquit Chablis Les Vaucopins 1er Cru
Bichot Domaine Pavillon Meursault
Bichot Ch Gris Nuits St Georges Les Terrasses Blanc
Bichot Long Depaquit Chablis Mountonne Grand Cru
Bichot Domaine Pavillon Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru
Bichot La Madone Fleurie
Bichot Rochegres Moulin A Vent
Bichot Aloxe Corton Clos Marechaudes 1er cru
Bichot Ch. Gris Nuits St Georges Rouge 1er Cru
Bichot Corton Clos Marechaudes Grand Cru
Bichot Latricieres Chambertin Grand Cru
Bichot Domaine Frantin Grands Echezeaux Grand Cru

ALBERT BICHOT 2015 will cost $100.00 per person (Cash or Check) or $105.26 regular. The class will meet at 7pm on Monday, February 12, 2018 at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Susan at 713-854-7855 or coburnsusan2@gmail.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd., l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

With 40 years experience in the wine business and 30-plus years experience teaching about wine, Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton is one of the top wine authorities as well as the most experienced wine educator in Texas.

Domaine FONTAINE GAGNARD 2013 Class & Tasting

Domaine Fontaine Gagnard is among my favorite white wine specialists in Burgundy. Based in Chassagne Montrachet, the Domaine was founded in 1985 after the wedding of French Air Force officer Richard Fontaine to Laurence Gagnard (daughter of long-time Chassagne vignerons Jacques and Marie-Joseph Gagnard), the Domaine is now run (since 2011) by their daughter Celine who has worked with her father since 2007. There is a passion for the terroir of Chassagne in its many expressions that runs back through the generation in this domaine. With the respectful winemaking of a family that gets “place,” each wine reflects the specificity of its place. Farming is by organic principles and winemaking features indigenous yeast fermentations.
On Monday, October 9th at 7pm, please join me (Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton) at the Wine School at l’Alliance Française for this tasting of Fontaine Gagnard’s 2013s. We’ll taste through all twelve available crus including one red and eleven whites with special attention paid to the specificity of place and process of each wine.

The line up:
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru Caillerets 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru Clos Saint Jean 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru La Boudriotte 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru La Grande Montagne 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru Les Vergers 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru Morgeot 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru Chenevottes 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet 1er cru La Romanée 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Batard Montrachet 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Le Montrachet 2013
Fontaine Gagnard Chassagne Montrachet Rouge 2013

Domaine Fontaine Gagnard 2013 will cost $120.00 per person (Cash or Check) or $126.32 regular. The class will meet at 7pm on Monday, October 9, 2017 at l’Alliance Française. To purchase your ticket, please contact Susan at 713-854-7855 or coburnsusan2@gmail.com.

L’Alliance Française is the French cultural center in Houston. Located at 427 Lovett Blvd., l’Alliance is on the southeast corner of Lovett and Whitney (one block south of Westheimer and two blocks east of Montrose).

If you buy a ticket and will not be able to attend, please cancel at least 24 hours before the class or you may be charged. Later cancellations will not be charged if we can fill the seat. This is often case as we regularly have waiting lists for these classes.

With 40 years experience in the wine business and 30-plus years experience teaching about wine, Spec’s fine wine buyer Bear Dalton is one of the top wine authorities as well as the most experienced wine educator in Texas.

From Our Friend François Labet in Burgundy

Chateau de la Tour in the Clos Vougeot

Dear All,
That’s it, the long harvest marathon starts again.
An easy growing season despite a light drought plus some frost damage means that we will not get the quantities we expected but great quality will be there.
We will start with the whites from Beaune and Meursault, then the reds of Côte de Beaune and finish with Gevrey and Chateau de la Tour (Clos Vougeot).
Thank you for your confidence, support and enthusiasm.
Sincerely,
François Labet

This photo was simply too beautiful not to share.
Bear