Coming to us from an old Burgundy cellar, this 1943 finally got to get out and stretch its legs yesterday. The wine emerged from the bottle looking impressively alive, with healthy color, wrapped in a medicinal, earthy funk. The medicinal nature was the confluence of subtle notes of menthol, clove, petrol and more noisy aromas gauze and band-aid. Almost 100% of the time these “Dr. Office notes” are off-putting and ruin a wine, somehow here it was more pleasant. While the miracle of a drinkable 69 year old village wine may have had something to do with our ability to look past those less desirable aromas, the palate certainly helped and was the most impressive thing about this wine. The weight and texture were remarkable as the wine moved across the palate with lingering sweetness and lively acid. It was silky, luscious and a truly delightful mouthful.
Adding to it’s appeal was how the Chambolle behaved with time in the glass. Where the 1990 G.D. Chassagne Rouge (from earlier yesterday) started to fall apart after some time in glass, this ’43 actually broke the other way and grew into its medicinal funk, reigning it in, making it it’s own and incorporating it into a more rounded Burgundian perfume. This little village wine was lovely, but more than that it was fun and special to be drinking something bottled during the last World War!