Burgundy

Appellations

Dominated by the hill of Corton, Aloxe-Corton is a charming village at the northern end of the Côte de Beaune, the first references to which date back as far as 696. As well as some fine examples of the striking, classic Burgundian roof-tiles the village also boasts some of the oldest cellars in Burgundy, dating back to the monastic period. Aside from the plethora of Grands Crus on the hill of Corton, the Aloxe-Corton commune also boasts several Premier Crus vineyards as well as Aloxe-Corton villages. The soils tend to be heavy and clay dominated, typically producing full-dboied, muscular styles of red Burgundy, though there are smaller outcrops of chalky soils producing much finer more fragrant wines. The vast majority of the production is red
A village westwards of Meursault and Monthelie on the road towards St Romain and the Hautes Cotes. There are 9 premier crus vineyards established in Auxey Duresses. The reds can be very good, ranging from light and fruity, to powerful but sometimes rustic. The whites are particualrly good value, rather like miniature Meursaults, less full-bodied and with higher acidity but carrying pletny of character and weight nonehtless.
Prior to appellation contrôlée in 1939 Bâtard used to be a vineyard of 20.37 hectares, encompassing the Criots and Bienvenue Grand Crus as well as some Chassagne 1er Crus. Today it is still one of the largest white Grands Crus in Burgundy, encompassing 11.97ha. As a big vineyard, and given that it spans both the Puligny and Chassagne communes, style can vary. Generally speaking, though, Bâtard will tend to be a full-bodied, rich and particularly borad-shouldered example of white Burgundy.
The commercial hub of Burgundian wine giving its name to the Côte de Beaune section of the Côte d’Or, Beaune was originally founded as a Roman camp by Julius Caesar, later becoming the seat of the Dukes of Burgundy in the fourteenth century. It is the Côte d’Or's third largest commune after Gevrey-Chambertin and Meursault. Its band of premiers crus, of which there are 44, stretches from Pommard in the south to the boundary with Savigny in the north. The soils are complex and varied and therefore so are the resulting styles of wine, however it is true to say that in general its Pinot Noir vineyards are usually some of the first to ripen in the Côte de Beaune, at least outside of the vinyeards on the Corton hill, and produce rich, ripe sturdy wines that may lack the finesse of the Volnays or Chambolle's of this world but compensate for this by showing a great deal of guts and character.
One of the smallest white Grands Crus, all 3.69 ha of Bienevnues-Bâtard-Montrachet lie in the commune of Puligny-Montrachet, situated in the north-east corner of Bâtard-Montrachet. The wines are more delicate than those of Chevalier or Bâtard, lacking the minerality of the former and the muscle of the latter. Bievenues is nevertheless justifiably a Grand Cru in its own right, the best examples are fine, generously-textured, fragrant and rich with great length of flavour.
A hamlet that lies between Meursault and Puligny-Montrachet, Blagny is situated higher up than either of its neighbours just underneath the forest at the top of the hill. The views are fantastic and the atmosphere wild and tranquil. Blagny is an appellation in its own right for light fruity red wines. Some more serious white wines are produced, but these divide themselves between the Meursault and Puligny communes. Those lying in the boundaries of the former are called Meursault-Blagny, whilst those in the latter are known purely as Puligny-Montrachet. The Blagny vineyards within these two communes are the highest in either Meursault or Puligny and as such benefit from tremendous natural acidity levels. There are eight premier cru vineyards up here, split between Meursault and Puligny. The potential of the white wines is only just starting to be realised, with the Domaine Martelet de Cherisey leading the way.
A fabulous Grand Cru vineyard of 15 hectares situated predominantly in the commune of Chambolle-Musigny, with a tiny 1.5 ha overlapping into Morey-St-Denis. The wines are typically sturdy, mineral and muscular - Burgundies of great stature that are built to last. The anomaly would be wines that come from the Morey St Denis side bordering Clos de Tart, here they are powerful but considerably more floral, fruity and elegant than other Bonnes Mares, Bruno Clair's is an exquisite example. Ownership accross the whole vineyard area is spread over more than 30 proprietors, the largest being Domaine Comte de Vogüé. There are many fine producers of Bonnes Mares up and down the Côte de Nuits, the most notable based in Chambolle-Musigny itself are Mugnier, Roumier and Groffier.
Bourgogne or Burgundy is a wide-ranging generic appellation in eastern France that has been planted with the vine at least since Roman times, the earliest archaeological evidence coming from 2nd Century A.D. The region, now spanning up to 28,000 hectares, owes a lot to the work of Cistercian Monks in the 11th and 12th Centuries, particularly in the Côte d'Or, who were responsible for identifying some of the finest vineyard plots still in existence today. The appellation is large, stretching between the cities of Auxerre in the North and Lyon in the south and includes Chablis, the Côte d'Or (from where hail some of the world's finest examples of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir), the Chalonnais, Maconnais and Beaujolais. Chardonnay is the main white grape planted, though there is still a fair amount of Aligote to be found if an ever decreasing amount, as well as tiny proportions of Pinot Blanc and Pinot Beurrot. For quality reds Pinot Noir is the dominant grape and the only permitted variety for the "Bourgogne Rouge" appellation controlee, there are plantings of Gamay too, though, which can be blended with a minimum one third Pinot Noir to make "Bourgogne Passetoutgrain." There is also the rarely seen Bourgogne Grand Ordinaire, which may include the Pinot Noir, Gamay, César, and Tressot varieties. This appellation also exists for whites, allowing a blend of Chardonnay, Aligoté and Melon de Bourgogne. Being such a big area style can vary enormously: From the steely, minerally white Bourgognes near Chablis to the rounder, more buttery offerings in the Maconnais. Very fine and extremely good value examples of red and white Bourgognes are made by many of the high quality estates in the Côte d'Or, the designated "Bourgogne" vineyards here being on the flatter less well-drained terrain the other side of the RN74 road to the villages and 1er Cru appellations. Some Bourgogne Rosé can also made be made but this is a tiny fraction of the red and white wine production.
A generic appellation in Burgundy for wines made from the white Aligoté grape variety, covering barely 2% of the 28,000 ha planted throughout Burgundy. The wines are usually very crisp and racy in style, showing less flesh and ripeness than Charodnnay and are most often aged in steel tanks or less often used wooden barrels, so oak is of minimal influence. There are some very basic, sometimes rather tart, examples that are blended in French brasseries with cassis or kir to be seved as an aperitif, however there are some extremely good examples, the best of which seem to come from Pernand-Vergelesses in the Côte de Beaune, and Bouzeron, which has its own appellation for Aligoté.
Chablis is Burgundy's northern most region spanning 3,000 hectares centred around the town of Chablis itself in the départment of the Yonne near Auxerre. Though considered part of Burgundy, in terms of geography it is as close to Sancerre and Pouilly Sur Loire as it is to the Côte d'Or, and in terms of soils and climate is actually closer. The vineyard area rolls around Chablis itself and 19 other villages. There are four levels of wine: Petit Chablis; Chablis;Chablis 1er Cru and Chablis Grand Cru, the latter of which there are seven which sit prominently above the town of Chablis itself on sun-blanched south-facing slopes.

Soil is a very important factor in the quality and unique style of Chablis and can roughly be divided into two types, firstly Kimmeridgean. This is a kind of clay limestone with a large proportion of fossilized oyster shells. Chablis is on the edge of the Paris rock basin the other side of which is the Dorset village of Kimmeridge from which the soil takes its name. The other soil type is Portlandien, a similar clay limestone structure without the same complexity, giving wines of slightly less sophistication and finesse. The former is the base of the Grands Crus and all of the best Premiers Crus and Chablis Villages vineyards, the latter, generally speaking, is the base for most of the outlying Petit Chablis area.

The northerly climate obviously means that vintages can vary quite starkly, summers are mostly hot and sunny, though, with the variation in weather coming more into to play towards the end of the season. The greatest danger during the season is from frost, which can be devastating, so much of the vine-growers early season activity is spent devising ways to protect the vines. One of the more traditional is lighting "smudge pots" throughout the vineyards, in an effort to get warm air circulating around the vines. The quantity and quality of wine produced can therefore vary from year to year. Chablis is obviously a large area and now a very big commercial brand so there are swathe's of rather poor quality and not very good value example around. Fortunately though there are plenty of fine examples, too. At its best Chablis is a unqieuly steely mineral wine that can age extremely well. "Classic" Chablis as we know it today is aged and fermented in steel tanks. However there are a number of growers experimenting with oak, mainly used barrels, not to give any oak flavour to the wine but to improve its texture and complexity. These can make for some of the very finest examples of Burgundy there are. Some of the finest exponents are Vincent Dauvissat, Francois Raveneau, Laurent Tribut, Droin and Moreau Naudet.
A 12.9 hectare vineyard in the commune of Gevrey-Chambertin in the Côte de Nuits. Chambertin is one half of Le Chambertin, the other half being Chambertin Clos de Bèze which is slightly bigger at 15.4ha. Chambertin has always produced some of the most intense and serious red Burgundy there is and was purportedly drunk by Napoleon during his campaigns. Today it is still one of Burgundy's very greatest Grands Crus. The wines are more brooding and closed in their youth than those of Clos de Bèze and age extremely well. Among the arch exponents are Armand Rousseau, Leroy, Trapet, Rossignol-Trapet, Denis Mortet and Louis Remy.
Gevrey boasts a total of eight grands crus, the pick of which are Chambertin and Chambertin-Clos de Bèze. The latter, which at 15.4 ha is the slightly larger of the two, may equally be sold as 'Le' Chambertin. Clos de Bèze is slightly further up the hill than Chambertin, with shallower soil, which means the wines tend to have a little more charm and expression in their youth but are marginally less powerful or intense than those of Chambertin, they nonetheless make for some of the most serious, ageworthy red Burgundy there is. There are many fine producers including, Armand Rousseau, Bruno Clair, Drouhin, Drouhin-Laroze, Dujac and Groffier.
A village and appellation in the Côte de Nuits, whose red wines are some of the most seductive in Burgundy offering a delicate balance between Vosne elegance and Gevrey-Chambertin power. There are two Grand Cru vineyards in the commune, the majority part of Bonnes Mares and the whole of Musigny. Next door to Musigny is one of Chambolle's most famous Premier Cru vineyards, Les Amoreuses, whose wines offer a combination of power, elegance and richness, less austere or intense than Musigny but very good nonetheless. The next most sought-after would be Charmes, that produces very opulent, ripe, seductive wines. The Premier Crus largely fall into two groups: The higher vineyards such as Veroilles, Cras and Fuees - these wines are usually the most ethereal, structured, high-toned and have the best acidities, they age extremely well; and the lower-lying vineyards beneath or adjacent to the Village which include Les Charmes, Beaux Bruns and Baudes, here the wines are richer, warmer and more generous in their youth than the higher vineyards but often without the same lift and definition. Chambolle is smaller than Gevrey or Vosne, so the "villages" wines, which can be very good value, are not always easy to find. The pre-eminent producers are: Mugnier, Barthod, Roumier, Comte de Vogue and Groffier.
One of the 8 Grands Crus of the Gevrey Chambertin commune spanning 5.39ha. The vineyard is found on the way to Morey St Denis from Gevrey below the Route des Grands Crus lower than le Chambertin, on same level as Charmes and Griotte-Chambertin. The wines of Chapelle can be very good and ageworthy, they are often bold, muscular wines sometimes to the point of extreme austerity but the best examples show sufficiently polished fruit to flesh out their structure.
A vineyard that predominantly lies below Chambertin, also encompassing the Mazoyères-Chamertin (which is below Latricières), next door to Morey-St-Denis. At 31.6 ha it is Gevrey-Chambertin's biggest Grand Cru and, as is the case with Clos de Vougeot and Échezeaux, this size and the fact that part of the vineyard goes as far down the slope as the low-lying route national, can mean variable quality. When its good, though, its very good. At best it should be the most feminine, fragrant and fruity of the Gevrey Grands Crus, with a soft, supple, tannic structure but sufficient intensity and length of flavour.
A village and appellation at the southern end of the Côte de Beaune covering over 300 hectares, that is now widely acclaimed for its white wines, though was once very much a red wine village. Plantings of Pinot Noir are still relatively high when compared to Puligny or Meursault, however it is the white wines that enjoy international acclaim. Within the commune sit part of Le Montrachet and Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru vineyards as well as Criots-Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru in its entirety. There are a total of 51 Premier Crus vineyards, though many of these are part other larger, better known vineyards and carry that name on the label, Morgeot being a good example of this. The wines are plump and racy, less elegant and refined than Puligny, full bodied but less fat and more vitality than a Meursault.
Based entirely in the Puligny-Montrachet commune Chevalier-Montrachet is a 7 hectare Grand Cru lying directly above Montrachet. A steeper, stonier and chalkier vineyard than Montrachet that gives less rich wines. However after Le Montrachet, the wines of Chevalier are usually the next most sought after of the white Grand Cru. The wines have a disticnt taut, mineral character thanks to the poor stony soil, aswell as the requisite length and depth for a Grand Cru quality wine.
A village just north of Beaune in Burgundy producing mainly red wine. There are no premier cru vineyards. Aswell as Chorey-lès-Beaune the wines can also be sold as Côte de Beaune-Villages. Like Beaune, this is a relatively early-ripening area for Pinot Noir. The wines, whilst never competing with the greatest in Burgundy, can be very good, particularly from the region's leading lights, Tollot-Beaut. Full, very fruity, round and ripe, the wines of Chorey-lès-Beaune are expressive, easily approachable and make for a very good introduction to red Burgundy.
Although Morey chose to append St-Denis (from the Clos St Denis) to its name , Clos de la Roche is probably the finest and most renowned vineyard in the commune, a large Grand Cru spanning 16.9ha. The soil is rich in marl and the micro climate warm, a combination that gives broad, ripe, rich and very opulent wines that can be particularly flattering when young, though they age very well. It is the flagship wine of Ponsot, but many other fine examples can be found from Leroy, Rousseau, Dujac and Louis Remy.

Clos de Tart is a monopole Grand Cru vineyard founded by the Cistercian sisters of Notre Dame de Genlis in 1250 and it remained under their ownership until the French Revolution, when it was auctioned off as one parcel. It was eventually bought by the current owners, the Mommessin family, in 1932. In 1855 it was highlighted by Dr Lavalle the only 'tête de cuvée' vineyard in Morey St Denis but latterly has underachieved. However since 1996 the thoroughly talented and experienced Sylvain Pitiot has been making the wine and he has driven its reputation back to the heights it obviously reached in 1855. Today it is one of the great Grands Crus of Burgundy, producing a rich, silky, seductive wine of great ripeness whilst retaining clear Pinot Noir character. An impressive and very ageworthy red burgundy.

One of the most famous and largest Grands Crus in burgundy the walled Clos de Vougeot was created by Cistercian monks between the 12th and early 14th centuries. The monks cleared, planted and amalgamated vineyard plots as and when they acquired them, eventually completing the final 50 ha walled vineyard by 1336. The Cistercians maintained ownership until the French Revolution, when all clerical estates were dispossessed. Clos de Vougeot was sold on to Julien-Jules Ouvrard in 1818, the year before he bought Romanée-Conti, and remained in single ownership until 1889. Since then ownership has fragmented so that today there are over 80 proprietors. The sheer size of the vineyard area means quality can be variable, particularly considering the bottom part of the vineyard reaches right down to the low-lying route national. However at its best Clos de Vougeot fully deserves its Grand Cru status, a wine different to any of the other Grands Crus, a broad, mouthfilling dense example of red burgundy that almost verges on the heavy but the greatest examples have a defintion,balance and finesse to add to this overwhelming power.
One of four Morey-St Denis Grand Cru, Clos St-Denis, sandwiched between Clos de la Roche and the village itself, comprises 6.6ha. Clos St Denis should be a true reflection of the Morey style, not as rich or opulent as Roche, but with a touch more structure and austerity.
Corton is the only red wine Grand Cru in the côte de beaune and covers several vineyards which are known as either Corton or as Corton hyphenated with their individual names, such as Bressandes or Clos du Roi. The style of the wine will depend on exactly where the vines are situated. Corton is an early-ripening area and the Pinot Noir grapes are usually the first to be harvested in the Côte d'Or. The vast majority of white wine that comes from the hill of Corton is Corton-Charlemagne though there is a miniscule amount of white Corton made.
A Grand Cru vineyard on the hill of Corton producing only red wine. One of the better known and more prevalent Corton Grand Cru, Bressandes, like all Corton, produces wines that have a good deal of richness to them, however they also tend to be some of the most muscular and structured examples of Corton, usually requiring one or two years more in bottle before they are ready to drink.

A white wine Grand Cru appellation, Corton-Charlemagne stretches in a narrow band around the top of the Corton hill from Ladoix-Serrigny, through Aloxe-Corton to Pernand-Vergelesses. Marginally higher cooler and with whiter spoils than the red wine vineyards of Corton, Corton Charlemagne is ideally suited to the production of white wine. The stony soils here impart a very specific flinty and mineral character displayed by most Corton Charlemagne. The body, style and ripeness of the wine can vary according to where the vineyards are situated - the east-facing vines facing Ladoix tend to produce the most mineral wines,whereas the due south Aloxe-facing side result in the richest, ripest wines. Corton-Charlemagne is a large and underrated Grand Cru vineyard, so a good example can offer the best value drinking of any Grand Cru white Burgundy.
Red wines from the lesser villages of the Côte de Beaune may be sold under their own names or as Côte de Beaune-Villages. This appellation is permitted for the wines of Auxey-Duresses, Chassagne-Montrachet, Chorey-lès-Beaune, Ladoix-Serrigny, Maranges, Meursault, Monthélie, Pernand-Vergelesses, Puligny-Montrachet, St-Aubin, St-Romain, Santenay and Savigny-lès-beaune.
Named after one of the region's commercial hubs, Nuits-St-Georges, this as an appellation given to the lesser wine-producing villages of the Côte de Nuits, which is the northern half of the Côte d'Or escarpment. The production is predominantly, but not exclusively, red wine from Pinot Noir. Wines from Fixin, Brochon, Prémeaux, Comblanchien, and Corgoloin may be sold as Côte de Nuits-Villages. In the best examples these wines are above Bourgogne level but below the village wine of the Côte de Nuit's most important appellations such as Nuits St Georges itself, Vosne Romanee, Chambolle Musigny, Morey St Denis and Gevrey Chambertin. The wines are light to medium bodied and rarely improve with more than 4-5 years bottle age, but for youthful drinking can offer excellent value.
Criots-Bâtard-Montrachet is a tiny 1.57 ha extension of the 12 ha Bâtard-Montrachet vineyard, situated entirely in the Chassagne-Montrachet commune. The vineyard area is so small and the wine therefore so rarely seen that it is usually much sougth after. Domaine d'Auvenay make one of the great examples.
Grand cru of the Flagey-Échezeaux village in the Côte de Nuits, producing red wines. Premier Cru vineyards in the commune of Flagey-Échezeaux are sold under the name of neighbour Vosne-Romanée, however the majority of the village's vineyard area is divided between two Grands Crus Échezeaux and Grands Échezeaux. The former is the larger of the two, comprising 37.6 ha accross 11 lieux dits or single named plots, so rather like Clos de Vougeot quality and style can vary according to the producer (of which there are 80) and depending on where the vines are. The soils range from poor and stony to heavy and clay-dominated. The wines can be very good and at their best display true Grands Crus power, stylistically they are often very ripe rich examples of Burgundy that age well. The appellation no doubt owes alot to the late Henri Jayer whose outstanding bottlings showed the heights Échezeaux can reach. The Jayer vines are now mainpulated by Henri's nephew, Emmanuel Rouget.
A village just north of Gevrey-Chambertin in the Côte de Nuits producing red wines. The wines of Fixin are similar in style to those of its neighbour - sturdy, muscular red burgundies with perhaps a bit more rusticity and less complexity, though having said that the best examples of Fixin can be infinitely superior to some of the lesser Gevreys. There are five premier cru vineyards: Les Arvelets and Les Hervelets, Clos de la Perrière, Clos Napoléon, and Clos du Chapître. There was a time, centuries ago, when Fixin's Clos de la Perrière was sold for the same price as Chambertin. Fixin has the potential to produce the best value red wines in Burgundy though a lack of good growers actually living in Fixin has meant this potential is not often realised. There is truth in the saying that the best Fixins are produced by growers based outside of the commune. Vosne's Meo-Camuzet and Gevrey's Denis Mortet are just two of many illustrious names making fine examples.
A town in the Côte de Nuits producing some of Burgundy's most renowned red wines. With 400ha of vineyard area this is the largest wine-producing region in the Côte d'Or. Gevrey-Chambertin's wines are typically some of the sturdiest in the Côte de Nuits, certainly bigger and heavier than those of close neighbours Vosne-Romanée and Chambolle-Musigny. As such the best examples require a longer bottle-ageing to show at their best, however whilst the best examples rate as highly as those of Vosne-Romanée and Chambolle-Musigny, being a large commune there are all too many disappointing wines that lack the ripeness structure and power they should have. Fortunately there are a number of top class growers making Gevrey, including Armand Rousseau, Denis Mortet, Bruno Clair, Drouhin-Laroze, Trapet, Rossignol-Trapet, and Denis Bachelet.
Gevrey also boasts eight grands crus, perhaps too many!, the finest of which are Chambertin and Chambertin-Clos de Bèze. Whilst it is questionable whether some of these are worthy of their Grand Cru status, Gevrey also boasts two Premiers Crus, the region's best, considered worthy of elevation to Grand Cru status. These are Les Cazetiers and Clos St-Jacques, a particularly fine bottling of the latter is produced by Domaine Armand Rousseau, who charge more for their Clos St-Jacques than for several of their other Grands Crus.
Givry is a commune within the Côte Chalonnaise whose production is predominantly red, though small amounts of white are produced aswell. In addition to the generic Givry AOC there are also 17 premier cru vineyards. The Côte Chalonnaise lies to the south of the Côte d'Or and benefits from similar limestone clay soils. There are no Grand Cru vineyards in the Côte Chalonnaise. The wines of Givry are generally red, marked by fresh acidities and tend to be on the light to medium boided side of the Burgundy spectrum, though some of the finest examples are suitable for ageing most should be drunk young.
A Grand Cru in the commune of Flagey-Échezeaux village in the Côte de Nuits. It shares vineyard area in the commune with its much larger neighbour Échezeaux (37 ha) and also adjoins Clos de Vougeot. The quality of wines of the small 9 ha Grands Échezeaux are very often considered greater than those of its two larger neighbours. There are 21 owners compared to the 80 of Échezeaux. The wine can be very great indeed, often betraying a much firmer structure than that of Échezeaux, very deep and complex fruit and superb intensity of flavour. As such it usually requires much longer ageing in bottle before it is ready for drinking. Some of the great producers are Joseph Drouhin, Domaine d'Eugenie (formally Engel), Francois Lamarche and Domaine de la Romanee Conti.
The Hautes Côtes de Beaune vineyards are dispersed in the hills above and beyond the Côte de Beaune escarpment. Most of the production is red wine from Pinot Noir, with some white wine made from Chardonnay or occasionally Pinot Blanc or Pinot Gris. Altitudes reach 500 metres, harvest is therefore later than in the Côtes de Beaune and the grapes do not always ripen easily. However even in warmer vintages the wines display high levels of acidity. The most important villages here are Meloisey, Nantoux and Échevronne.

An appellation that applies to certain villages and their surrounding vineyards high up above the Côte de Nuits, including Villars-Fontaine, Magny-lès-Villars, and Marey-lès-Fussey. It is cooler up here than in the Côte de Nuits and ripening can sometimes be a struggle in colder years. The wines, both red and white, can offer very good short to medium term drinking. These are generally lighter Burgundies with great freshness of fruit and are usually much more affordable than those of the Côtes de Nuits. Many producers of high renown make wine here including Meo-Camuzet, Bertagna, Anne Gros and Jayer Gilles.
La Romanée's tiny 0.84ha, under half the size of its neighbour La Romanée-Conti, make it the smallest Appellation Controlée in France. A monopoly of the Liger Belair family since the 1830s, La Romanée is just above La Romanée-Conti and therefore has a slightly steeper slope and shallower soil. Since 2002 the wine has been made by Vicomte Louis Michel Liger-Belair who heads up the Domaine du Comte Liger Belair estate, turning La Romanée into one of the truely great Burgundies it always had the potential to be. Though closed and reserved in its youth, the wine habitually displays an elegance and haunting brilliance, and after a minimum of 7-10 year's bottle age blossoms into one of the very best red wines in Burgundy, if not the world. Approximately 300 cases are made each year.
La Tâche is another monopoly of the Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, a fine vineyard considered nearly as great as Romanée-Conti itself. The vineyard area comprises 6ha and includes Les Gaudichots, which at one time was separate. The wines are stunning, some of Burgundy's very finest, and can be impressive when young but are thoroughly ageworthy.
At 6.94ha Latricières-Chambertin is one of the smaller Grands Crus of the Gevrey Chambertin commune, and after Chambertin and Chambertin-Clos de Bèze is capable of producing some of the best wines. Poor soil and a cool micro-climate lends a strict, minerally style to the wines. Always racy and powerful, if a little reticent in their youth, the wines are ageworthy and develop into fantastic examples of Grand Cru Red Burgundy. Some great exponents are Louis Remy, Leroy, Drouhin-Laroze, Trapet and Rossignol-Trapet.
Le Montrachet is the most famous and sought-after Grand Cru white Burgundy, the title of which the villages of Chassagne and Puligny use as a suffix to their names. The vineyard spans 8 ha accross both the Puligny and Chassagne communes. Its poor limestone soils and south east-exposure, which ensures the vines are sunblanched from sunrise to sunset, result in ripe, full-bodied and often unforgettable wines. A true Le Montrachet has a depth of flavour and an almost haunting length unmatched by any other Grand Cru. It is a sophisticated wine of many layers that should be savoured and appreciated slowly.

The principal exponents of Le Montrachet are Joseph Drouhin, Remoissenet, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Bouchard Père et Fils, Comtes Lafon, Prieur, Sauzet, Leflaive, Ramonet, Colin, and Amiot-Bonfils. The largest parcels belong to the Marquis de Laguiche, whose wine is made by Joseph Drouhin, and Baron Thénard, whose wine is made by Remoissenet.
Macon is an important commercial hub on the river Saône and capital of the Mâconnais wine district of Burgundy, where large quantities of white wine is produced. There is some red wine produced but this is dwarfed by the vast quantities of white wine made and it is rarely seen on export. The Mâconnais does not have an uninterrupted escarpment like that of the Côte d'Or, rather vineyards are planted on rolling limestone/clay hills, amongst other livestock and arable farming. The appellation is as popular as ever, thanks to its ability to produce good, affordable and very approachable examples of White Burgundy. There are now a number of high-quality growers in the region, not least Dominique Lafon who sees enormous potential here. The wines can be from the simple and refreshing, to complex buttery and mineral, whilst not hitting the heights of those from the Côte de Beaune, they can offer excellent quality for the money you pay. Though no more than an hour south of the Côte de Beaune, the climate is warmer here to a significant enough degree to make harvests a good 10 days earlier and the style of wine producer rounder and more buttery. The basic appellation is Mâcon, then up a level is Mâcon-Villages or Mâcon followed by a particular village name such as Milly, Uchizy, Lugny etc .. ;other Appellation Contôlées that can be of extremely high quality are St-Véran; Pouilly-Vinzelles, Pouilly-Loché, and Pouilly-Fuissé.
The southernmost wine appellation in the Côte de Beaune, produces medium-bodied red wines to be drunk in the short to medium term. The vines stretch across the three villages of Cheilly, Dezize, and Sampigny. Growers would traditionally sell off their grapes or wine off to merchants, before being sold on to the public as Côte de Beaune-Villages. Since 1988, the wines were allowed to be called Maranges. Some growers are starting to bottle and sell their own wines as Maranges, thus starting to build a reputation for this little known appellation. One of the arch exponents are Domaine Bachelet-Monnot. White wines are also made but are very rare.
The northernmost appellation of the Côte de Nuits. Marsannay is the only Burgundian commune that boasts appellation contrôlée status for red, white, and rosé. The appellation also includes the vineyards of Couchey and Chenove. Prior to 1987, the wines were sold simply as "Bourgogne" followed by the "Marsannay" or "Rosé de Marsannay" designation. The Pinot Noir Rosé is a speciality of the village pioneered in 1919 by Joseph Clair, it can offer considerable pedigree and quality. The reds, when made properly, can be some of Burgundy's best value reds, full of Pinot Noir character, some terroir complexity they are usually relatively light, certainly lighter than those of neighbour Fixin, but offer very pleasureable drinking for within 5-6 years of the vintage. The whites are made from Chardonnay but some Pinot Blanc can be found, too, they are plump fruity and sometimes quite exotic examples of White Burgundy, and, again, can be extremely good value.
Mazis-Chambertin, also written Mazy-, comprises 12.59 ha and along with Latricières-Chambertin is considered to be one of the best Gevrey Grands Crus after Chambertin and Clos de Bèze. The wines can be very fine intense and powerful, they age well but are be more generous in their youth than either Chambertin and Clos de Bèze being less structured. Some of the more renowned producers are Dugat Py, Maume, Rousseau Esmonin and d'Auvenay.
Meursault is the largest commune in the Côte de Beaune (spanning over 370ha) producing predominantly white wines. There are no Grand Cru vineyards, but its Premier Crus can equal the best white wines in the Côte de Beaune. The finest vineyards are Les Perrières, Les Genevrières, and Les Charmes. In addition Meursault has a plethora of other named vineyards that aren't Premier Cru but nonetheless show their own distinct characteristics and can offer excellent value, some of the best are Chevalières, Tessons, Clos de la Barre, Luchets, Narvaux, and Tillets. These are lower-lying than the Premiers Crus but are much more interesting than the villages wines of Puligny where the water table is higher. The low water-table is also the reason why some of the region's deepest cellars can be found in Meursault. The commune is big so the style and quality are varied. Generally speaking Meursault is known for its full body and, nutty, buttery character. The best examples have enough vitality and acidity to balance out the 'fat.'
Montagny is a commune within the Côte Chalonnaise whose production is exclusively white wine. This sub region is blessed with 53 premier cru vineyards. The Côte Chalonnaise lies to the south of the Côte d'Or and benefits from similar limestone clay soils. There are no Grand Cru vineyards in the Côte Chalonnaise. The wines of Montagny are fresh with higher acidities than the wines of the Côte d'Or and tend to be light-medium in body. The best examples make for excellent value early drinking White Burgundy.
A mainly red wine-producing commune in the Côte de Beaune neighbouring Meursault, Volnay and Auxey Duresses. At its best, from arch exponents such as Eric de Suremain and Lafon, Monthelie is a characterful, medium to full bodied red Burgundy not dissimilar to a Volnay without perhaps the same depth or complexity. The best wines can give great pleasure and represent some of the best value for money red wine in the Côte d'Or.
A commune in the Côte de Nuits district of Burgundy capable of producing excellent quality red wine, which is typically described as being a halfway house between its neighbours - the richer Gevrey-Chambertin and the lighter Chambolle-Musigny. There are four Grand Cru vineyards, from north to south: Clos de la Roche 16.9 ha, Clos St-Denis 6.6 ha, Clos des Lambrays 8.8 ha and the monopole Clos de Tart 7.5 ha, plus a small strip of Bonnes Mares overlapping from Chambolle Musigny. There are some good premier cru vineyards, among the best known include Les Ruchots, Clos de la Bussière (monopole of Georges Roumier), Les Millandes, Clos des Ormes, and Les Monts Luisants. The commune is also capable of producing excellent quality whites, but they are very rarely seen. Bruno Clair's En La Rue de Vergy is one example, another is Domaine Ponsot who produces a white from Chardonnay blended with a proportion of Pinot Blanc that had mutated from Pinot Noir vines.
Le Musigny rates alongside the very best Grands Crus Pinot Noir vineyards in Burgundy. There are 10.7ha split between Musigny, Petits Musigny, and La Combe d'Orveau. The vineyard area lies between the bottom of the wood at the top of the hill and stretches down top the upper part of Clos Vougeot, the slope is steep and the soil is a well-drained limestone/chalk /clay composition. A classic Musigny displays a paradoxical mix of both elegance and raw power, it is commonly described as "An iron fist in a velvet glove." Often very surly and closed in its youth Musigny is nonetheless one of the most beguiling and ageworthy Burgundies money can buy. A massive 7 ha of the vineyard is owned by one of the arch exponents Domaine Comte de Vogüé, other fine examples are made by Leroy, Mugnier, Drouhin and Roumier
A town in the northern part of the Côte d'Or that gave its name to the Côte de Nuits. Sitting on the southern edge of the Côte de Nuits, the town is the mini commercial hub of this part of the Côte d'Or, though much less significantly so than the Côte d'Or's capital, Beaune. Many négociants are based here and the town, like Beaune, also runs its own charity auction, the Hospices de Nuits, but on a much smaller scale.

The appellation Nuits-St-Georges lies both sides of the town, incorporating the vineyards of neighbouring Prémeaux-Prissey to the south. Typically Nuits-St-Georges are powerful, mineral, muscular and long-lived wines, however there is a distinct, widely accepted difference between the wines on the south side and those further north adjoinging Vosne-Romanée where the wines are silkier and more elegant, rather like those of its neighbour. There is more clay in the soil of the Prémeaux vineyards, making wines of less finesse and more prominent tannins.

Nuits boasts 27 Premier Cru vineyards but no Grands Crus, perhaps because at the time of the classifications in 1930 the town's leading vigneron, Henri Gouges, who was tasked to help classify the vineyards, was too concerned of being seen to favour vineyards in which he owned parcels. However, if the crown was to go to one Les St-Georges, on the south side of Nuits, would be it. Also particularly fine in the southern Nuits-St-Georges sector are Les Cailles and Les Vaucrains, both adjacent to Les St-Georges, while Aux Murgers and Aux Boudots on the Vosne-Romanée side and Les Argillières, Clos l'Arlot, and Clos de la Maréchale in Prémeaux can make great wine.

Small quantities of very rare white wine are made, too, from the Chardonnay grape, as in the Clos l'Arlot, and also from the Pinot Blanc grape in Gouges' Premier Cru Les Perrières. The town is home to a surprisingly small handful of well-reputed producers, namely Henri Gouges, Robert Chevillon, Domaine de l'Arlot, Patrice Rion, and Chauvenet, whilst there are many growers in neighbouring Vosne-Romanée who make outstanding examples of Nuits St Georges., and in Chambolle-Musigny, Freddy Mugnier is responsible for the great revival in fortunes of the spectacular Clos de la Maréchale vineyard.
A village in the Côte de Beaune at the foot of the Corton hill on the south-western side. Both red and white wines are made here. As the vines are slightly higher and less exposed to the sun than other vineyards in the Côte de Beaune, facing west-northwest, the red wines tend to be relatively light in style and high in acidity. At their best though they are packed with fruit and freshness, offering good Burgundy drinking over the medium term. The white wines have more renown. They are without doubt some of the greatest value white wines in the valley. Flavoursome yet vital they exhibit that raciness and "mineral" character displayed by the white wines of the Corton hill. In addition to white Pernand-Vergelesses a good deal of Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru lies within the Pernand commune, some 17 ha. The Aligote grape variety thrives here, too, resulting in some of the best examples in Côte de Beaune.
Petit Chablis is an appellation encompassing the outlying area of Chablis planted largely on Portlandien soil, a kind of clay limestone, as opposed to the complex Kimmerdigean soils of Chablis itself. There are over 500 ha of vineyard area but this is dwarfed by the Chablis total of over 3000 ha. The Portlandien soils give a wine that is similarly citrus and steely as Chablis without perhaps the same depth, finesse or minerality. Having said that many of Chablis' top growers do produce excellent quality Petit Chablis that can make very good value for money.
A commune in Burgundy renowned for producing the most powerful and tannic red wines of the Côte de Beaune. A dearth of good producers actually in Pommard has perhaps meant that the commune has not always realised its true potential. There are some very fine examples from, amongst others, Comte Armand, however many of the best Pommards seem to be made from producers outside of the village. The cool, moist heavy clay soils result in strong, muscular wines designed for ageing which are deeper in colour and usually more structured than those of its neighbour, Volnay.

Pommard spans from the border of Beaune to, on the south side, the edge of Volnay. On the Beaune side, the finest vineyards are Les Pézerolles and Les Épenots, including the Clos des Épeneaux monopole of Comte Armand. Towards Volnay is Les Rugiens, wines from the lower section, known as Les Rugiens Bas, are considered to have the potential to be the communes best and there are those who feel it is justified elevation to Grand Cru status.
A white wine appellation in the Mâconnais region of Burgundy. The appellation encompasses 850 ha spread accross the communes of Fuissé, Solutré, Pouilly, Vergisson, and Chaintré. The climate is warmer and the harvest earlier than further north in the Côte de Beaune, the wines are some of the richest examples of White Burgundy to be found and when well balanced with fresh acidity or complex minerality can make for excellent quality. Though not as fine as the best of the Côte de Beaune, they are a fraction of the price and therefore make for excellent value. There is no Premier Cru system here, though single vineyard names can and do appear on labels.
The vineyards are based around the stunning rocks of Solutré and Vergisson which dominate the landscape here, they are the last outposts of the limestone plateau on which all Burgundy is based. The soil is distinctly rich in colour and can be a very deep dark red in parts, it is said that the soil was enriched thousands of years ago by animals being driven off the cliff tops by Stone Age hunters.
A village in the Côte de Beaune between Chassagne and Meursault producing very fine white wine and small amounts of less interesting red. Within the Puligny commune are two Grand Cru vineyards in their entirety, Chevalier-Montrachet and Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet, and two which are shared with neighbouring Chassagne: Le Montrachet itself and Bâtard-Montrachet. In addition there are a number of excellent Premier Cru vineyards that are also capable of making some of Burgundy's finest white wines - at the same elevation as Bâtard-Montrachet lie Les Pucelles and Les Combettes, which is adjacent to Meursault-Perrières. A little higher up the slope, at the same elevation as Le Montrachet, lie Les Demoiselles, Le Cailleret, Les Folatières (including Clos de la Garenne), and Champ Canet. Part of Les Demoiselles is classified as Grand Cru Chevalier-Montrachet but a very small slice remains as premier cru, being regarded, along with Le Cailleret, as the finest Puligny Premier Cru vineyard. Further up the slope, where the terrain becomes stonier are Le Champ Gain, La Truffière, Chalumeaux, and the vineyards attached to the hamlet of blagny, which are designated as Puligny-Montrachet premier cru for white wines, and Blagny premier cru for reds.

A characteristic of the Puligny-Montrachet commune is the high water table, this means there are few individual village vineyards worthy of note, the best village wines will usually be a result of a blend. This also means that the cellars are rarely that deep. The wines of Puligny have a very distinctive style, very fine, taut and typically mineral, much less fat and rich than a Meursault and more elegance than a Chassagne. The top Puligny Domaines are Sauzet, Leflaive and Carillon.
Richebourg is one of the great Grands Crus in the Vosne-Romanée commune, behind only to La Romanée, Romanée-Conti and La Tâche in reputation. Its 8 ha are shared between a handful of growers including Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Domaine Leroy, Grivot, various branches of the Gros family and Domaine Méo-Camuzet. As the name suggests, this is one of the most voluptuous, rich and powerful wines of Burgundy, a sort of Vosne-Romanée on steroids, and has the ability to age for decades.
Romanée-St-Vivant is a great Grand Cru in the commune of Vosne-Romanée, taking its name from the monastery of St-Vivant founded at Vergy in the 10th Century. The vineyard are is quite large for this part of Vosne, just under 9.5ha, and is further fown the sloper with richer deeper soils than those of Richebourg and "the Romanées." The wines are excellent, typical Vosnes, silky and svelte with the richness and gravitas of a Grand Cru, though never reaching the mark of either of "the Romanées" or La Tâche. The best examples, however, can come close if not surpass some versions of Richebourg. The vineyard area is dominated by Domaine de la Romanée-Conti who is the largest owner with 5.3 ha, the next largest owners being Domaine Leroy and Louis latour's Domaine de Corton Grancey. Other fine examples are also made by Follin Arbelet, Sylvain Cathiard, Dujac and Robert Arnoux..
Before being christened "Romanée" in 1651, this vineyard was formerly known as Le Cloux. In 1760 the property was bought by the Prince de Conti and subsequently became known as Romanée-Conti. Romanée-Conti sits just below La Romanée, there is slightly less of a slope and the soil has more clay content and is richer and deeper. The vineyard are spans 1.80 ha, over double that of La Romanée. It is a monopoly of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, who have turned it not only into one of Burgundy's very greatest examples but also one of the most sought-after wines in the world.
Ruchottes-Chambertin is a small Grand Cru within the Gevrey Chambertin commune spanning 3.50ha. The soils are poor, rocky and limestone based which results in wines of a racy, mineral, taut character which can be extremely fine indeed and, whilst a little reserved when young, flesh out well with age. Some of the best examples are from Mugneret, Esmonin, Roumier and Rousseau, the last of these owns in its entirety the outstanding monopole Clos des Ruchottes, covering 1.06ha. within the Ruchottes Chambertin vineyard.
Rully is a commune within the Côte Chalonnaise that is best know for its white wines, though some very good reds can be found too. There are 23 Premier Cru vineyards here. The Côte Chalonnaise lies to the south of the Côte d'Or and benefits from similar limestone clay soils. There are no Grand Cru vineyards in the Côte Chalonnaise. Rully whites are light - medium bodied, marked by fresh acidities, the reds are similarly light and refreshing, both can make for excellent value early-drinking Burgundy.
A village at the southern end of the Côte de Beaune, south of Chassagne-Montrachet, producing red wines and less frequently whites. The heavy marl rich and clay soils are suited to producing red wines, which are usually powerful though can tend towards the reustic. The best examples have body, weight and plenty of fruit to cover the sometimes rustic tannins. The best wines are capable of ageing well. The finest vineyards are considered to be the premiers crus La Comme, Clos de Tavannes, and Les Gravières, La Maladière, Clos Rousseau on the far border of Santenay. Vincent Girardin is probably the most famous and prolific Santenay producer.
A town just north west of Beaune, as lès (Old French for near) implies, with its own appellation for red wine and a small amounts of white. The reds are fruity, approachable and at their best can rival those of Beaune itself, but don't usually quite have the intensity or complexity of a good Pommard or Volnay, communes that aremore prominently sited on the limestone escarpment of the Côte de Beaune.

The village is divided by a river. Vineyards on the southern side, including premiers crus Les Peuillets, Les Narbantons, Les Rouvrettes, and Les Marconnets, are on sandy soil and produce wines similar in style to those of Beaune. Those on the other side, towards Pernand-Vergelesses, including Les Lavières and Les Vergelesses, are on stonier soil and produce more sturctured and mineral wines.
A relatively recent appellation, granted in 1967, and the region's highest, the extremely picturesque village of St Romain is perched on top of a cliff in the Côte de Beaune behind Auxey-Duresses at between 300-400 metres above sea level. It is known predominantly for its white wines with a bit less than half of the total production red. Being high up and cool, ripening is not always easy but in the sunniest and warmest years the white wines can be very good quality and excellent value. Additionally the village is houses one of the region's pre-eminent coopers, François Frères.
An appellation in the Mâconnais created in 1971 for white wines made from Chardonnay. The appellation is based between the more generic Mâcon appellation and Pouilly-Fuissé, there are seven communes in total including Davayé, Solutré-Pouilly, and Prissé where the soils are the classic Burgundian limestone base. There a small number of good quality producers here, and many fine examples are also made by Pouilly-Fuissé producers, too. St-Véran can be similarly round, buttery and appley as a Mâcon-Villages but with more body and complexity, though they never reach the depth and power of a Pouilly-Fuissé.
A village in the Côte de Beaune tucked around the corner of the main Côte west of Chassagne. The appellation borders both Chassagne and Puligny, producing two-thirds red wine however the whites, though a little scarcer, are as highly thought of if not more so. A high proportion, two-thirds, of the vineyard area is designated premier cru, the most famous being En Remilly and Les Murgers Dents de Chien, these form part of a band of south west-facing vineyards between the borders of Chassagne, Pulginy and the hamlet of Gamay (which is also part of the St Aubin appellation.) The rest of the vineyards are south south east facing but are further up the valley where it is cooler. The reds are light but in good vintages offers lots of very seductive, pretty fruit, soft tannins and can be excellent value for money. The whites are described as bit like baby Chassagnes, they are medium bodied not as cmplex but offer an abundance of racy fruit, these can certainly be some of the best value whites in Burgundy.

An appellation in the Côte de Beaune between Meursault on the south side and Pommard on the north side. The wines are distinctly different from those of Pommard, lighter in colour and more elegant. They have always been known as delicate, fruity feminine and very fine wines, even a century ago the wines were described as "partridge-eye" pink in colour and the finest of all the wines of the Côte de Beaune. Whilst often displaying great charm and fruit in their youth the best Volnay often have considerable power too and can be very ageworthy.

More than half Volnay's vineyards are of premier cru status and one of these, Les Santenots, has a foot in two communes - its red wines are Volnay and its whites are Meursault. Aswell as the Santenots du Milieu Volnay has a plethora of other fine vineyards: Le Cailleret, Clos des Chênes, Champans, Taillepieds, the Clos de la Bousse d'Or, monopole of Domaine de la Pousse d'Or, and perhaps the most lauded of them all, the Clos des Ducs, a monopole of Marquis d'Angerville, one of the pioneering estates of Domaine-bottled Burgundy in the 1930s. Volnay's finest producers include Marquis d'Angerville, Michel Lafarge and de Montille.
A commune in the Côte de Nuits that is home to some of Burgundy's and the world's finest examples of Pinot Noir. Vosne-Romanée villages, an appellation that encompasses the villages wines of neighbouring commune Flagey-Échézeaux, can be very good value. In addition to these there some excellent Premiers Crus vineyards and six Grands Crus, three of which share the name Romanée, the suffix to which Vosne was hyphenated in 1866. Right accross the appellation from village to Grand Cru the wines share a very distinctive combination of richness and silkiness that Vosne-Romanée has so successfully built its reputation on.

The Grands Crus are Romanée-Conti, La Romanée, La Tâche, Richebourg, Romanée-St-Vivant, and La Grande Rue. Between them they produce, with Musigny and Chambertin, the greatest wines of the Côte de Nuits. They have more finesse than any other but nonetheless show as much power and intensity as their nearest rivals. The Premiers Crus wines can be world class, too, amongst the best of them being, Aux Malconsorts, next door to La Tâche, Clos des Réas, Cros Parantoux made famous by Henri Jayer which lies above Grands Crus, Aux Brûlées of which a fine example is made by Méo-Camuzet, and Les Beauxmonts and Les Suchots next door to Flagey-Échézeaux.

Domaine de la Romanée-Conti is and has been one of the great names that dominates the commune, however the late Henri Jayer must surely rival if not surpass them in terms of influence and reputation. Apart from making some of the most startling examples of Vosne and Échézeaux, Henri influenced a whole generation of great young wine-growers who are now doing extremely well. The village's other great Domaines are Domaine du Comte-Liger Belair, Domaine Leroy, that includes part of the former Domaine Nöellat, Anne Gros, Jean Grivot, Méo-Camuzet, Sylvain Cathiard and the recently revived Domaine François Lamarche.