The 1999 Clos de Tart Grand Cru was picked from September 22 until the morning of September 27, with alcohol degrees between 13.1° and 13.7°. It is a vintage that has not quite delivered as I was expecting it to. It is adorned with an attractive, rather ostentatious bouquet of the red plum and bergamot scents that I have observed on previous bottles, though not the mineralité I would anticipate as it approaches two decades in bottle. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannins, featuring a mélange of red and black fruit, and powerful and burly, with black pepper and Earl Grey toward the finish. It is a Clos de Tart determined to make an impression and yet it is beginning to fall short in terms of finesse and terroir expression. Tasted at a private Clos de Tart dinner in London.
Anticipated maturity: 2018-2025
Robert Parker 93
Tasted at the pre-dinner vertical to mark Sylvain Pitiot’s retirement from the domaine, the 1999 Clos de Tart Grand Cru is certainly the best vintage until the 2002, although I prefer the later vintage, which has a little more elegance and precision. Still, the nose here is not too shabby with gorgeous red plum and bergamot scents, dried rose petals and cold stone scents. The palate is medium-bodied with firm, strict tannin. The fruit is edging away from this 1999 and being substituted with attractive black pepper, bay leaf and Earl Grey tea notes. What remains is the weight and presence of this Clos de Tart that lingers wonderfully in the mouth. This might be considered as Pitiot’s first, but not last success at the estate. Tasted September 2015.
Anticipated maturity: 2015-2030
Fragrant undergrowth and mushrooms and a musky fragrance and something I can only describe as intoxicating but not in the form of alcohol, but still with some attractive dark red fruit. Another tear jerker in its beauty and complexity. Still surprisingly firm tannins and fresh acidity but not closed or reluctant, just youthful in its structure if a little more mature in its aroma. Immensely long and scented on the mid palate and pretty dense in a burgundian way. Wonderful. (JH)
Anticipated maturity: 2005-2012