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“There are many ways to the recognition of truth, and Burgundy is one of them.”Isak Dinesen

Burgundy is a small region in the heart of eastern France that runs north/south from Dijon down to Lyon. Home to some of the most sought after and elite wines on the planet, the region has been obsessed over for centuries. As many have waxed poetically over the years, a great bottle of Burgundy is a work of art that can move a wine drinker in ways like no other. For many wine drinkers, Burgundy is simply the pinnacle. Does it live up to all the hype? Well, this month, we are presenting a unique opportunity to taste with us and decide for yourself.

While a handful of grape varietals are grown in the region, there are two that steal the show and make up most of the wines, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. These are single varietal wines labeled and focused on the place of origin. For example, a bottle labeled Puligny-Montrachet is assumed to be Chardonnay coming from the commune of Puligny-Montrachet. Over the years, some producers have started putting the grape varietal on the bottles to help international consumers, but that is more common in entry level wines.

The climate is cool and continental with a long growing season providing a slower ripening process for the grapes. Gradual ripening allows for complex flavor development creating captivating, aromatic wines that are hunted and sought after by the most avid wine drinkers around the world. The unique limestone and limestone-rich clay below the topsoil also plays an enormous role in the wines and is the source for the vivid mineral core that hits the palate in both red and white wines.

The vineyards can be traced back to Roman times, but it was the monks of the Middle Ages who cataloged the complexity and specificity of the vineyard sites ultimately leading to the “cru” understanding that we have today. Crus are singular vineyard sites that are ranked, with “Premier Cru” and “Grand Cru” at the top levels respectively. At the time, most of the vineyards were owned by the church, but the French revolution ultimately gave the vineyards back to the people. Why is this important? The Napoleonic Code was implemented in 1804 and contained inheritance laws that required equal distribution of land to all heirs as property was passed down through generations. Over time, vineyards began to be divided into smaller and smaller pieces. The law would ultimately influence production methods as many cooperatives and negociants took shape as a biproduct of the fragmented ownership.

There are five main subregions of Burgundy starting with the more remote area of Chablis to the north. Known for its zippy, energetic versions of Chardonnay, the wines of Chablis are invigorating and fresh and typically only see barrel aging in the Grand Cru level wines. The appellation is known for its unique kimmeridgian (marl and clay) soils composed of ancient seashells that give the wines notable minerality and often flinty characteristics.

Moving south, the heart of the region is a 30-mile limestone slope known as the “Côte d’Or”. Often called the “slope of gold”, the Côte d’Or is actually short for Côte d’Orient, referencing the eastern-facing nature of the slope that brings morning sun to the vines. This subregion is home to the most prestigious villages and some of the wines in highest demand. Communes like Gevrey-Chambertin and Vosne-Romanée lie in the northern part of the Côte d’Or where Pinot reigns. Further south, Chardonnay dominates in villages such as Puligny-Montrachet, Meursault, and Chassagne-Montrachet.

South of the Côte d’Or are the Côte Chalonnaise and Mâconnais. The whites in these two subregions take on richer flavor profiles as the weather is a bit warmer, but overall, the wines still tend to carry a more acid-driven and mineral character. Lastly, technically still part of Burgundy, Beaujolais is a subregion that stands on its own further to the south. You will find a few whites, but the wines of Beaujolais are primarily reds driven by the gamay grape grown on their own unique granite soils. Beaujolais really deserves its own separate write up!

Except for the sparkling offer in this month’s flight, we are primarily focused on wines from the Cote d’Or. Being the most prestigious subregion, putting the flight together was no small task. Prices have been on the higher end for some time, but modern-day demand has exponentially pushed the wines out of reach for most everyday consumers. Not only are prices high, but the past few vintages have left supply very short, making access to the wines even more difficult. We hope you enjoy your exploration of this flight. It’s more than a great opportunity to experience this legendary region.

The Tasting Room Flight

Bailly Lapierre Cremant de Bourgogne
Bailly Lapierre Cremant de Bourgogne

Bailly Lapierre Cremant de Bourgogne

$25.00
Domaine Berthelemot Pernand-Vergelesses 'Les Belles Filles'
Domaine Berthelemot Pernand-Vergelesses 'Les Belles Filles'

Domaine Berthelemot Pernand-Vergelesses 'Les Belles Filles'

$56.00
Domaine Lafouge Bourgogne Côte d'Or
Domaine Lafouge Bourgogne Côte d'Or

Domaine Lafouge Bourgogne Côte d'Or

$49.00
Domaine Bart Marsannay 'Les Echezots'
Domaine Bart Marsannay 'Les Echezots'

Domaine Bart Marsannay 'Les Echezots'

$52.00
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Looking to Customize?
We now host curated tastings for groups of two to ten people. Our tastings are a great way to explore wines that are new to you or indulge in some of your favorite regions. Whether you are looking to learn or to simply relax, our team has you covered.