Adam Brett-Smith of Corney & Barrow wrote about his experience of tasting this in Vosne, ‘“To be swallowed” is the tradition of the Domaine when tasting Romanée-Conti, after you have shuffled the other Grands Crus into some sort of comparative order and prepared yourself for this, the most subjective, mythical, adjectively elusive of all wines. Unlike last year when, for reasons of Covid restrictions we tasted here, at 1 Thomas More Street, we heard faintly once again, the 12-noon tolling of the Angelus bell in the church at Vosne-Romanée above the near-silent cellar room at the Domaine.’ A little more restrained on the nose than the Tâche. Intense nose that has hints of blackcurrant! More majestic than La Tâche. Not as approachable but certainly at least as magnificent – even more so. And then on the palate there is such integrity! Such concentration of pure Pinot grown with care. Great life. If I try to contrast this with Leroy wines (for obvious reasons), the DRC style is definitely more restrained, more obviously dry, but just as persistent. A monument.
Anticipated maturity: 2030-2050
Robert Parker 100
The 2019 Romanee-Conti Grand Cru is a wine that brought tears to my eyes. Unfurling in the glass with scents of rose petals, black tea, wild berries, exotic spices, violets, bergamot and licorice, it’s full-bodied, sensual and enveloping, with a broad attack that segues into a weightless but pungently intense mid-palate defined by striking energy and precision. Seamless and elegant, with melting tannins and mouthwatering acids, it concludes with an expansive, intensely floral finish. It’s a monument in the making.
Anticipated maturity: 2033-2070
As is typically the case, the noses of the La Tâche and the RC are very different, with the former being exuberant and the latter typically brooding and often grumpy. At the time of my late November visit this was mildly reduced but not so much as to completely suppress ripe floral and spice whiffs. The cool, pure and highly energetic large-scale flavors also possess a simply gorgeous mid-palate texture that contrasts somewhat with the compact, backward and taciturn finish that possess stunningly good complexity and incredible persistence. The balance is perfect and like all of the greatest vintages of this storied and multi-faceted wine, the word that comes to mind is Zen as the sense of harmony is unmatched. I could taste this wine three days later and while I don’t pretend to know if the 2019 RC will ultimately match the finest vintages over the past 100 years, based on the underlying material, it certainly has a very good chance of doing so. In sum, Burgundy doesn’t get any better than this.