Dominique Laurent is a former pastry chef who started a small negociant business in Nuits-Saint-Georges, in Burgundy’s Cote d’Or, in the late 1980s. He produced his first vintages a few years later, and quickly developed a reputation for making very small quantities of excellent wine sourced from old vineyards. In 2006 Laurent made the leap from negociant to grower with the purchase of a few acres of vineyards. Today Domaine Laurent Pere et Fils owns 23 acres in Nuits-Saint-Georges. He is known for his extreme approach to “hands-off” winemaking, and for his habit of sometimes using “200% new oak,” meaning that one cuvee is sometimes transferred twice to new oak barrels. About 30,000 bottles are produced annually and his wines have earned cult status with some Burgundy collectors.
Mazis-Chambertin is a 22.4 acre Grand Cru vineyard near the village of Gevrey-Chambertin. The name Mazis is sometimes spelled with a “y” or without the final “s.” The soil is shallow and somewhat rocky, and the wine made from this vineyard is considered excellent. The legendary Lalou Bize of Maison Leroy is one of the smaller landholders with about .6 of an acre. There are some 30 proprietors with parcels in Mazis-Chambertin. The largest are Hospices de Beaune, with 4.38 acres; Bernard Dugat-Py, with 3.05 acres; and Joseph Faiveley, with 3 acres.
This red wine is relatively light and can pair with a wide variety of foods. The grape prefers cooler climates and the wine is most often associated with Burgundy, Champagne and the U.S. west coast. Regional differences make it nearly as fickle as it is flexible.