Domaine de la Romanée Conti 2012
2012 was a difficult vintage in Burgundy, so how did DRC do? Tasting the 2012s from this famous Burgundy domaine


It is always quite a privilege to be able to taste the new releases of Domaine de la Romanée Conti (DRC), courtesy of Corney & Barrow, their sole agents in the UK. The tasting takes place downstairs in their head offices, not far from Tower Bridge, and doors open early at 0830. There’s a steady trickle of wine trade people, most arriving from Tower Hill tube, and so you are guaranteed to bump into a few familiar faces on the way.

Once inside, people taste in rather hushed tones. Some sit down to write their notes, sitting for minutes savouring their small but adequate samples. People generally behave like people unused to church behave in church, not quite sure whether or not it is bad form to chat in anything other than a loud whisper. It’s the one day you won’t find Neal Martin in his New Balance trainers. And Aubert de Villaine hovers around in his gentle, almost ghost like manner. He’s very approachable and willing to chat, but most people are a bit scared to engage him.

So, how are the 2012s? Normally, I am blown away by these wines. I wasn’t blown away today. I thought they were very good. Very good indeed. But this was a difficult vintage, and to me the wines lacked the sheer charm and otherworldly perfume that they normally offer at this early stage. I am not saying these are bad wines, just that I had high – perhaps unfairly high – expectations that weren’t fully met. I’ll be really interested to hear others’ views on these bottles.


Domaine de la Romanée Conti Corton 2012
In 2008 the domaine took out a lease on three small plots from Domaine Prince Florence de M
érode totalling 2.3 hectares, which for now are all blended but when all the vines are of sufficient age will be offered separately. Chocolate and spice on the nose with some roast coffee, too, as well as fine herbs. The palate is supple and fresh with raspberries and red cherries, but it’s currently a little overwhelmed by new oak. Nice detail. 92/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti Échézeaux 2012
Fine, expressive red cherry and berry nose with subtle peppery notes, as well as some roast coffee new oak. The palate has some sweetness and lively, pure vital red cherry and plum fruit. Fresh acidity and a bit of grippy structure. Pure and light on its feet though the oak is a bit prominent. 93/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti Grands Échézeaux 2012
Beautiful floral perfume with fine spices, pepper, red cherries and dried herbs. Nice freshness and purity with a bit of grippy structure under the cherry and plum fruit. High acidity, a hint of green, finishing firm. 94/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti Richebourg 2012
Fine and spicy with a hint of cocoa and roast coffee, as well as red cherries and plums. The palate is supple, grippy and fresh with some pepper notes alongside the fresh, sappy berry fruits. Grippy and a bit awkward but with lots of potential. 94/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti Romanée-St-Vivant 2012
Perfumed, floral red cherry nose with a supple greenness. There’s a bit of spiciness, too. Quite a haunting perfume, and I like the green. The palate has a rounded, silky character with some warm spiciness and good structure. Quite fresh and a bit of grip on the finish. 94/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti La Tâche 2012
Very highly perfumed, in the distinctive way that La Tâche always seems to manage: spicy, a bit green, a bit tarry, with red cherries and plums. Distinctive palate with fresh red cherries, some silky texture and a lovely supple personality. Combines structure and finesse, with good acidity. 95/100

Domaine de la Romanée Conti Romanée-Conti 2012
Fine, pure, aromatic red cherry nose. Supple, bright, silky palate is quite lush with red cherries and plums. Nice focus and purity with fine structure. This is really fresh and it’s a lovely, expressive wine. 96/100

Here's a brief film of the tasting:


See also previous vintages:

Wines tasted 02/15  
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