“Evocelles,” meaning “the little valleys,” is a postage stamp of a Gevrey village vineyard, tucked way up in the northwest corner of the appellation, perched above the Premiers Crus “Les Goulots” and “Champeaux.” It faces due south, which makes all the difference in warm years in 2015. Translation: This drinks like a Premier Cru in 2015. Damien acquired this parcel in 2010. Look for notes of anise, a faint prosciutto-like gaminess, deep black color and extract, and bright red fruits. Paté and triple-cream cheeses, please.
In Burgundy, more than almost anywhere else in the wine world, too often you pay for a Name. If there’s a Gros, Leroy, Leflaive, Ponsot, or a word like Comtes on the label, keep an eye on your wallet. There’s a reason for this, of course – the great domaines of Burgundy are expensive because a) they have the best terroirs + b) they’re run by perfectionists, + c) the word has gotten out. But what if the word hasn’t gotten out? What if, ten years ago, a talented youngster barely out of college decided to take the reins from his dad, and quietly renovate the cellar and winemaking techniques? This is what happened at Domaine Les Tilleuls in Gevrey-Chambertin. Quality jumped exponentially when young Damien Livera took over from dad Philippe, but the critics and the public have not caught on. Today the Livera wines are plush, deeply colored, concentrated red Burgundies that combine power and finesse – they are totally underrated and as such are a very smart buy.