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In every village up and down the Cote D'Or, there are families whose names are seemingly eternal fixtures. In Santenay there are the Bellands and in Meursault the Moreys. There are the D'Angervilles of Volnay and the Leflaives in Puligny. In Nuits Saint Georges there is the Gouges family and the many Gros of Vosne. In Gevrey-Chambertin, Trapet is among the most venerable of addresses.
Jean-Louis Trapet's family go back seven generations in Gevrey, with considerable holdings throughout the village all the way up to the Grand Crus of Latricieres, Chapelle and Chambertin. In the past, the domaine always produced well-regarded wines; classic and long-lived (if a touch rustic at times). The Trapet family also came relatively late to the practice of estate-bottling their wines (I had the opportunity some years back to drink a Trapet Latricieres-Chambertin 1969 bottled under a negociant label). However, if their cellar practices remained somewhat old-school, the Trapets have shown a tendency for viticultural foresight throughout their history.
Louis Trapet was one of handful of Burgundy estates to seize grafting vines as a solution to phylloxera in the late 19th century. Though the practice was forbidden at the time, it saved his vineyards, which went on to be a source of vine material used to re-plant after the region was devastated. Today, Jean-Louis Trapet has shown a similar sense of prescience. He began conversion to biodynamic viticulture in the mid-nineties, when precious few growers were doing so, and today the estate holds Demeter certification. He has also made a series of adjustments in the cellar, reducing the amount of new oak across the board and increasing the percentage of whole clusters in fermentation.
As a result, the wines that Domaine Trapet is producing today are some of the liveliest in Gevrey. We have been fans for some time. There is always a great sense of energy and drinkability, and in the warm 2018 vintage, this is all the more palpable. We have had the chance to open some of these wines ahead of their general arrival, and were struck by the sense of beauty and weightlessness. The fruit is pure and red and despite the high temperatures in Burgundy that summer, the wines are balanced, even delicate. They represent a through-line for the greatness of the region in the last 150 years and what is still to come. We are excited to offer them to you today. Sam Ehrlich
**Wines all arrive Wednesday 11/25**
A lovely foot in the door to the Trapet lineup, this is a classic 50/50 split of Pinot Noir and Gamay. It feels exceptionally Gamay-forward, with fresh raspberry and strawberry fruit and a peppery spicy finish. There is a lovely sense of snap and crunch here. Tons of fun and one to stock up on. Sam Ehrlich
Produced from young-vine Gevrey, this is a terrific Bourgogne. The fruit is bright red, full of wild strawberries and cherries, and the feeling of weightlessness here is what makes Burgundy special. The finish is more salty and cool, after the peppery spice-driven Passtoutgrains. You will be left wondering where the bottle went. Sam Ehrlich
This is sourced from vines in Marsannay and the character is distinctly different. The fruit is just a touch darker, with a floral note that suggests violets as well as roses. In the mid-palate, there is a brambly forest-y character that gives extra dimension and savoriness. The sense of limestone here is quite stark and there is good grip and structure, particularly for the level. This will age well in the mid-term and would make a great addition to the cellar at a relative bargain. Sam Ehrlich
Gevrey is the only village in the Cote D'Or where the village-level vines fall east of the famous D974 that runs the length of the region. Anywhere else these vines would be Bourgogne-level. Trapet's village Gevrey all comes from vineyards above the road, scattered just below or even among some of the best-known sites in Burgundy. Some of the vines here are 100 years old.
The Trapets own roughly three quarters of a hectare in this Grand Cru lying at the southern edge of Chambertin, purchased in 1904.
Le Chambertin is one of the truly legendary vineyards of Burgundy and the Trapets own nearly two hectares spread over three parcels.
Ostrea is sourced from vines ranging from 50 to 90 years old, from a set of parcels rich in limestone and fossilized oyster shells, from which the cuvee takes its name.
This is a blend of four Premier Cru sites, including the legendary Combottes found at the corner of the Grand Crus Mazoyeres and Latricieres. Roughly 30% whole cluster here.