Robert Parker 89
The Rousseau 2008 Gevrey-Chambertin Lavaux St.-Jacques smells of sage and smoked meat, with pungent, garrigue-like notes of resin, herbs, hedge flowers, and scrub typical for this site in this vintage. A sense of raw meat and sweet though tart melange of red raspberry, red currant, and cherry emerge on a fine-grained, subtly creamy, yet refreshing palate. This finishes with saliva-inducing satisfaction, if without much sense of richness, and the smell in the empty glass is more impressive than the already interesting but slightly reductive initial aromas. I expect it will be interesting to follow for at least 8-10 years and gain some depth in the process. Eric Rousseau did not begin harvesting until September 28, but was finished already on October 4, with " as usual " the entire burden of selection placed on his pickers. The resultant wines prove that, as he puts it a oethey know what they’re doinga and sorting tables are unnecessary. Grapes came in between around 12% and 13.2%, were virtually all destemmed, and were only lightly chaptalized. Levels of malic acid were however higher even than in 2004, reports Rousseau, who compares the fruit with that of 1996, but does not finger the wines as strong candidates for long-term aging (a oelong terma " bear in mind " meaning upwards of 20 years in the context of a Rousseau track-record). When I tasted his 2008s in late February, Rousseau was planning to bottle them in March or April, a bit earlier than usual, although several struck me as relatively unformed. But then, his malos had finished by July " not late in terms of the vintage. (Unfortunately, I had only one chance to taste Rousseau 2007s: fleetingly, selectively, at a stage too early to merit reporting on in detail, although the trend was promising and Rousseau is keen on the results.) Importer: Frederic Wildman & Sons, New York, NY; tel. (212) 355-0700
Anticipated maturity: 2010-2020
Good bright red. More lift to the aromas of red fruits, flowers and minerals. Juicy, pure and bright, with more density and precision than the village offering. Lively on the back end.