Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant may not get quite the same attention from collectors as the producer’s other top wines, like La Romanée-Conti or La Tâche. However, it would be a mistake to pass over Romanée-St-Vivant. This wine is among the freshest and purest in Domaine de la Romanée-Conti’s roster and is deeply enjoyable to drink. With succulent red fruit, silky tannins, perfumed florals, and a complex underlying spice, Romanée-St-Vivant is an intriguing and versatile Pinot Noir that pairs well with a variety of foods. It’s also one of the few wines from this producer that can be drunk either young or old and provides excellent value for the price, making it a popular choice among Burgundy collectors.
Whether you’re looking to round out your Domaine de la Romanée-Conti (DRC) collection or you’d like to dip your toes into the world of DRC for the first time, this detailed guide to the Romanée-St-Vivant label will help you find the very best vintages for your collection.
The Allure of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant
Part of what makes Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant so compelling is that it showcases its unique terroir beautifully. This wine is made in the Romanée-St-Vivant village located in Vosne-Romanée, a subregion of northern Burgundy. There are just seven producers in this area, and DRC owns more than half of the land. What sets Romanée-St-Vivant apart from other terroirs in the Vosne-Romanée area is its rich clay soil. Because the vineyard is located on a hill, rainfall slowly shifts clay deposits down the slope over time. This dense clay retains water and keeps the soil cool. As a result, grapes tend to grow slowly in this type of soil and develop fresh acidity. By comparison, other vineyards in this area, particularly those at higher elevations, have more limestone in the soil, which is fast-draining and produces more concentrated, powerful wines. The vines here are also relatively young, at just 30 years old, on average.
These wines are the very picture of harmony; they’re complex yet pure, and light on the palate yet dense in flavor.
All of the reasons above are why, when you compare Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant to other wines from DRC, you’ll find that Romanée-St-Vivant is notably fresher and more delicate. The top vintages are elegant and well-balanced, with plush red fruit, particularly cherry and raspberry notes. Underneath this pure fruit is a layer of complex florals, including violet and rose. While the fruit and floral notes are the stars in DRC’s Romanée-St-Vivant label, there’s also an element of spice and smoke present that adds to the depth of the flavor profile. Some vintages even have an earthy quality that helps balance the sweet fruit. These wines are the very picture of harmony; they’re complex yet pure, and light on the palate yet dense in flavor. What’s more, many of these notes are all present in even the youngest vintages and the wines generally require very little aging—unlike other Domaine de la Romanée-Conti wines, which typically take a decade or more to open up completely.
In a market full of powerful wines that need decades to mature, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant stands out for its softer interpretation of Pinot Noir. However, some lower quality vintages of this wine can be overly simplistic for people who are used to drinking complex Burgundy. To start a collection of only the highest quality Romanée-St-Vivant, you’ll need to seek out the top vintages in the producer’s recent history.
What Are the Best Romanée-St-Vivant Vintages?
Like all Burgundy, the vintage quality of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant varies from year to year. For example, some vintages, like the 1999, require aging before reaching their peak because of higher-than-usual levels of tannin. Other vintages, like the 2004, were more approachable in their youth, as they were sweeter and rounder. The vintage you choose for your collection will depend on what you hope to get from these wines. If you’re looking for wines that are ready to drink now, some of the softer young vintages or older and more tannic vintages that have reached maturity are good options. If you’re seeking to buy wine for aging, look for wines on the younger side that have prominent tannins and acidity.
To help you make this decision, take a look at this list of some of the best Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant vintages:
High-Quality Young Vintages
|2017||Concentrated and ripe. Drink or hold.|
|2016||Finessed and perfumed. Hold.|
|2015||Perfumed and tannic. Hold.|
|2012||Dense and rounded. Drink or hold.|
|2011||Graceful and precise. Hold.|
|2010||Well-structured and spiced. Hold.|
High-Quality Older Vintages
|2009||Silky and elegant. Hold.|
|2008||Pure and floral. Drink or hold.|
|2006||Vibrant and acidic. Drink or hold.|
|2005||Floral, fresh, and tannic. Drink or hold.|
|1999||Sweet, fresh, and lush. Drink or hold.|
|1993||Complex and earthy. Drink or hold.|
|1989||Very tannic and concentrated. Drink or hold.|
|1988||Complex, tannic, and pairs well with food. Drink or hold.|
|1976||Sweet, harmonious, and earthy. Drink.|
This is just a sampling of high-quality Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant vintages; you can easily find many others that are worth collecting on the secondary market. Keep in mind that most of these wines will be enjoyable to drink immediately upon release, even if they have the potential to age. With time, some vintages do develop more complexity, but opening these bottles early isn’t a blunder. Many collectors choose to open their bottles of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant within the first few years of release.
How to Collect and Age Top-Quality Romanée-St-Vivant
You shouldn’t think of a collection of Romanée-St-Vivant wines in the same way as you would a collection of wines with greater overall aging potential, like Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Richebourg. A better comparison is perhaps DRC’s Échezeaux label. Both DRC’s Échezeaux and Romanée-St-Vivant wines are generally quite approachable in their youth and require very little aging.
If you do decide to age DRC Romanée-St-Vivant, it’s best to let it sit for 20 years or more (or buy older bottles that have been aging for at least two decades already). That’s because this wine matures very slowly. With time it grows richer and more complex and can sometimes develop a sweet, almost liqueur-like character. Since even the top vintages are also typically ready to drink within just five years of release, these wines are great investments for collectors who want as many aging options as possible.
Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant is among the most versatile investment wines on the market.
Another reason to start a collection of Romanée-St-Vivant is that these wines cost much less, on average, than DRC’s other labels. These wines sell for $2,500 on average on the secondary market. Compare that to the flagship Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-Conti label, which retails for nearly $19,500 on average on the secondary market. However, while the price is much lower than other DRC labels, this is still a rare wine that can be hard to find upon release. Fewer than 1,500 cases are released each year, and bottles that have been aged for a decade or more can cost many thousands of dollars. If you want to make a profit reselling your bottles, investing early is important, as is storing them properly for at least a decade.
Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-St-Vivant is among the most versatile investment wines on the market. Unlike other top-quality wines that require careful long-term aging and a very high initial investment, you can start a Romanée-St-Vivant collection at a reasonable cost and with less effort. With a few bottles in your collection, you can pull some out for a special dinner or keep top vintages under lock and key until you’re ready to sell. This graceful wine offers endless possibilities.
Whether you are starting your high-end wine collection or adding to an established portfolio, Vinfolio is your partner in buying, selling, and professional storage. Contact us today to get access to the world’s finest wine.