The history of the Domaine Gros Frère et Soeur has its roots in 1830 when their ancestor, Alphonse Gros, after his marriage to Julie Latour, partly bought, and partly inherited, the first vineyards in Vosne Romanée. This estate, known as Domaine Louis Gros, remained unchanged until 1963 when, on Louis’ death, it was divided between his sons, with Colette and Gustave joining to create a unique project with the iconic name of Domaine Gros Frère et Soeur. For the definitive quality leap, however, we must wait for the premature death of Gustave, which occurred in 1984, and the subsequent entry into the company of his nephew Bernard Gros, a passionate winemaker who cultivates, among his passions, also music, considered the form of expression that combines best of all creativity to scientific rigor.
Under the guidance of Bernard, recently assisted by his young son Vincent, the estate, about twenty hectares between Vosne Romanée, Clos Vougeot and Echezaux, undergo a decisive work of removing the clones of less prestigious Pinot Noir, and their replacement with other finer and more sought-after ones. This operation has involved, as foreseen by the production disciplinary of Burgundy, the declassification of some vineyards from Grand Cru to Premier Cru but, given the quality of the current wines, it would be said that for Bernard the choice was worth. From an agronomic point of view, then, it was chosen to follow a production disciplinary that, while not seeking this or that certification, is characterized by the great respect of the entire ecosystem within which the vineyards are inserted.
Stylistically, it is tried to give life to wines that, despite having an excellent aging capacity, are able to immediately show great depth and intensity, starting from the vineyards where a strict green pruning allows to concentrate the intensity of the remaining bunches. To enhance the centrality of the fruit, in the cellar, the entire destemming process is carried out, while the aging process is carried out in new barriques whose roasting level is chosen with unparalleled skill. This approach also concerns one of the main wines of this winery, the Richebourg Grand Cru, whose vinification began with the decision to delay the harvest by a week, to operate on plants a first selection of more concentrated grapes, without the need to resort to concentration machines. Once in the cellar the grapes were completely destemmed and selected again on a vibrating table before pouring into cooled concrete vats, where they were frequently reassembled until the beginning of fermentation. The fermentation itself was done at a controlled temperature, without the addition of sulphites, with two daily fullings and finished in the new barriques I mentioned. Less than two years of rest between cask and bottle and the wine is ready for marketing.
The 2016 vintage shows a ruby color of great intensity with an olfactory fan that opens on notes of cola, black cherry syrup, wild blackberry and vanilla, followed by dehydrated rose, toffee, incense of Mount Athos and sweet tobacco pipe, with final echoes of empyraeumatic and carpentry. The palate shows the delicious balance of a body of great thickness, soft and glyceric, but able to move with incredible agility, with a contour of elegant tannins and a hint of black pepper; all enriched by the return of red fruit and noble spices that persist even after a seemingly endless closure.