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Wine Writer John Jens Reviews Marchand and Burch’s French Wines

By John Jens

PASCAL Marchand, the Howard Park-based Burch Family’s partner in Marchand & Burch, showed their latest Burgundy releases recently and, with help from a couple of spectacular and low crop-level French vintages in 2010 and 2012, these are clearly their greatest releases.

There are a number of positives in Marchand & Burch’s favour. The wine drinking world is rapidly turning to pinot noir and these partners moved early and now produce 50 per cent-plus of WA’s pinot.

All of their red Burgundies are also pinot noir and at the exchange rate, Burgundy pinots are more than price-competitive with their New Zealand peers.

As a group, the great value-for-money wines of the 2010 range include the 2010 Vosne Romanee (18.8 points) and the Volnay (18.6 points ).

Marchand & Burch’s 2010 Grand Crus of Mazis-Chambertain (19.2 points) and Chambertin (19.5 points) are, in the first instance, outstanding, and in the latter, quite simply one of the world’s great wines.

Surprisingly, there is one price anomaly amongst these releases. The lean, long, fine and beautifully textured 2011 Beaune Tuvilains Premier Cru (18.5 points) is a value star.

Jeff Burch says that as the Beaune appellation does not carry the imagery of, for example, a Gevrey Chambertin and as the 2011 vintage is good, not great, he has reduced the price to below that of his 2010 village appellation releases.

This pricing decision is potentially to your benefit. This beautifully crafted red burgundy is drinking marvellously now.

It lives up to its premier Cru status with ease and displays wonderful and elegant pinot noir characters.

At $79, it is far less than the majority of New Zealand’s finest – nearly all of which lack this wine’s breeding and craftsmanship.

There is also a rarity factor with the 2011 Marchand & Burch Premier Cru Beaune Tuvilains.

Just 50 of the 200 dozen made have come to Australia. How many will stay in the west?

This is one of the Burgundy and pinot noir bargains of the year.


Marchand & Burch
Chablis 2012

TRADITIONALLY Chablis has been lean and crisp – and largely, or often – unwooded chardonnay.

There is an ascending quality hierarchy beginning with Petit Chablis at the base and then rising through Chablis and Premier Cru on the way to Grand Cru.

Over the past decade the wines from this region have become more generous and perhaps therefore more appealing to Australian palates. The finest Chablis available in Perth are under the Christian Moreau and William Fevre labels.

With its serious fruit intensity and enveloped crisp acidity, this is clearly the finest under this label to date and it also matches virtually any other ‘Chablis’ appellation wines with ease.

This is of superior Premier Cru quality at a Chablis appellation price. Drink 2015-2018. 18.2 points.