Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Wild Visual World of 'Highly Regarded' Maison Louis Max by Philip S. Kampe



The Wild Visual World of ‘Highly Regarded’ Maison Louis Max Wines by Philip S. Kampe

It has been nearly a month since my first encounter with the wines from France’s Maison Louis Max Vineyards.
A short trip to Portugal has not deterred my daily thoughts of how friendly, delicious and affordable the Burgundy portfolio from Nuites-Saints-Georges is for consumers at home as well as the restaurant trade that looks for that ‘special wine’ at reasonable prices.

After dining with Philippe Bardet (what a wonderful first name), President of Maison Louis Max, at the ever-so-good Olives restaurant in Manhattan, I, believe I have found those ‘special wines’.
Mr. Bardet is a good soul and visionary for the growth of Maison Louis Max wines. The company he runs has an illustrious past. 
Founded in 1859 by a Russian immigrant and passed on generation to generation, the name and quality of the wines has withstood the ages. Add an inventive graphic artist, illustrator, Pierre Le Tan (known for his work with the New Yorker) to the field and you have distinctive labels that make the wines of Maison Louis Max stand out from the rest of the playing field.
Labels are a most important ingredient in a wine's presentation, a philosophy that Philippe Bardet follows. After the label comes the true test—what is in the bottle?
And what is in the bottle makes or breaks the deal.
In this case, what is in the bottle MADE THE DEAL, especially the white Burgundies!
I was ever so impressed by so many of the wines that I have started to collect the wines. There are many reasons why:
One is to show the label off at my not-so-famous dinner parties.
The second is to show the wines to my friends who own retail wine shops, let them sample the wines and ask why don’t they carry these exceptional wines.
Thirdly, I go to many restaurants and pay a corkage fee, then immediately send a glass of wine to the wine steward/sommelier and chef to sample. Maybe that is all that is needed for them to order the wine for the future?
Whatever it is, I Love these wines.

My favorites include:
CHABLIS ST. JEAN  2012  ($22)
Citrus,green apple with a barnyard finish.
A true, white Burgundy.

SAINT VERAN  2012  ($24)
Minearlity and yeast make this an example of what a true, white Burgundy should taste like.

SAVIGNEY LES BEAUNE  1er CRU  LES FOURNEAUX  2010  ($33)
Herbs, minerality and white flowers make this an expressive and  extremely complex wine.


There are many wines in the Portfolio of Maison Louis Max.
Others that I sampled and enjoyed are:
BOURGOGNE CHARDONNAY BEAUCHARME  2011
MEURSAULT 1er CRU PORUSOT  2010
CHARMES CHAMBERTIN  2010
POUILLY FUISSE  2012
NUITS SAINTS GEORGES 1er CRU LES DAMODES 2010
BOURGOGNE PINOT NOIR BEAUCHARME  2011
MERCUREY  VIGNES du DOMAINE  2010

If you haven’t had any of these wines, now is the perfect time to try them.
The Holidays are around the corner.

Philip S. Kampe



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