With a long established tradition of winemaking in Gevrey, Domaine Joseph Roty enjoys a devoted following of wine lovers the world over who, without fail, eagerly anticipate each year’s release. Critics are unanimous in their praise, employing descriptors such as “exhilarating balance”, “noble tannins” and “exceptional depth”.
It is from a rich history of winemaking dating back to 1710 that today’s estate works with an enviable selection of old vines. Although modest, the holdings of less than 7 hectares grant the estate access to vines an average of 60-years-old. At the pinnacle of the portfolio sits the highly sought after Trés Vieilles Vignes (TVV) from Charmes-Chambertin, sourced from a majority of vines first planted in 1881. The twelfth generation currently manage the business with Joseph’s son Philippe making the wine. Philippe worked with his father from 1990 until Joseph’s death in 2008 and continues to create wine in the manner taught to him by his father.
Exacting standards are applied to vineyard management, using sustainable agricultural principles to produce fruit of the highest quality from each plot. Following destemming and a rigorous sorting process in the winery, the fruit undergoes a weeklong cold soak prior to fermentation, which occurs at a low temperature. The intention is to extract a high level of colour, tannin and phenolic compounds, fashioning the intense and powerful style for which the estate is known. Further contributing to the fuller mouthfeel of the wines from Dom. Joseph Roty is the use of batonage or stirring of the fine lees. The wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered thus providing an unadulterated expression of site and of the Roty vinous signature.
Of the Charmes-Chambertin TVV Allen Meadows of Burghound describes the 2010 as “a stunner of a wine that clearly outclasses its two grands crus stable mates”, possessing “…full-bodied, powerful and explosive flavours that benefit greatly from the exceptional depth of material before culminating in a massively long and impeccably well-balanced finish…” In complete agreement is Stephen Tanzer of the International Wine Cellar, when he writes of the same wine, “… Superb nuance and lift to the aromas of kirsch, violet, liquorice pastille and crushed stone. Wonderfully sappy and alive in the mouth, with outstanding energy and tension to its dark fruit, floral and mineral flavours … an exhilarating balance of sweetness and acidity. Noble tannins coat every square millimetre of the palate …”
The domain has extended their holdings to include Marsannay and this too has been met with impressive praise. Meadows describes the 2012 Marsannay Les Ouzeloy as Outstanding, awarding it 90 points and commenting on the “… spicy dark berry fruit, cassis and prominent earth aromas … high quality effort that is worth your attention."
The charm of these wines cannot be underestimated. Clive Coates MW describes the attraction when he writes, “Roty wines are very distinctive. They are full, very intense, very perfumed and very harmonious. They are certainly immensely seductive.” Although writing of the 2010 TVV Charmes-Chambertin this phrase may easily apply to the entire portfolio when Allen Meadows writes, “In short, … if you can find it buy it.”