A favourite debate amongst Burgundy enthusiasts is which of the Côte d’Or’s 1er Crus might deserve upgrading to grand cru status. Gevrey-Chambertin’s ‘Clos Saint-Jacques’ always comes up in such discussions. According to Clive Coates MW, ‘when it came to be decreed what was grand cru and what was not in the 1930s, it was decided that only climats contiguous with Chambertin and Clos de Bèze would be considered for top rank. Ruchottes and Mazoyères scraped in, for a finger of each touches the magic core. Clos Saint-Jacques, on its own, but perfectly poised on the Combe de Lavaux flank, was excluded.’
Today, however, it is clear that Burgundy enthusiasts judge it amongst the grands crus, with their wallets, as prices for Clos St-Jacques today exceed some grands crus, even within a domaine’s range.
Another interesting aspect is ownership. From the 19th century until 1954 the vineyard was a monopole of the Comte de Moucheron. It was then sold, and is today owned and produced by 5 domaines, all with regular shaped strips from the bottom to the top of the vineyard:
2.21ha, Domaine Armand Rousseau
1.60ha, Domaine Sylvie Esmonin
1.00ha, Domaine Louis Jadot (ex-Domaine Clair-Daü)
1.00ha, Domaine Bruno Clair (ex-Domaine Clair-Daü)
0.89ha, Domaine Fourrier
By tasting each of the 5 domaines producing it side by side, we will come away with a clear idea of what that character is, as well as how each of the 5 domaines involved interpret it.