Benjamin Leroux 2017 Offer

With 2017, I think they will give pleasure in their youth, but I am confident they will still be in very good shape in 10 years. NEAL MARTIN

You may remember that when I asked Allen Meadows, aka Burghound, on this video who he thought might be a natural heir to the late great Henri Jayer of Burgundy, one of the two people he cited was young Benjamin Leroux of Domaine Comte Armand. JANCIS ROBINSON MW

Leroux’s passion, ambition and sheer talent have already resulted in a number of stunning, beautiful wines THE WINE ADVOCATE

Visiting with Ben this year was really insightful and also a lot of fun. He was in a great mood and I think it’s because he knew what was in the barrels. It was also our last tasting in Burgundy before heading south to the Rhone, always nice to finish with a bang.

He was beaming with pride when we started tasting and was whirling around the winery dragging his spittoon and pipette along while chatting about the details of the vintage, various cuvees and casually asking after people back here in Oz. He made some casual comments about the vintage which I jotted down but I thought this was the most important one for me “The great thing about 17 is that it really shows you where it’s from (paused for a second and looked at us) but they don’t lack anything.” The reason is that after a few blockbuster years in a row a vintage like 17 can be overlooked which is very unfortunate. His reds are decidedly lighter than the previous two and perhaps don’t have the mineral drive or sneaky structure of the 14s but as he said they lack nothing. What vintages like 2015 offer, for example, is huge upfront appeal, they are show stoppers built on impressive size. What his 17 reds bring to the table is an appealing, bright, red fruited impression with gentle minerality with an overall accessible feel. His whites, like everyone’s, are excellent.

It’s a vintage that people who have followed his wines over a number of years will love. They play more in the upfront, delicious and elegant realm and while the reds will, I think, drink earlier than the three proceeding vintages there is a lot to love about them.