Burgundy - Complex and Rewarding
Burgundy can be viewed in two very separate ways. On the one hand it can be highly complex and sometimes inconsistent, with swings of style from vintage to vintage, not to mention the complex labyrinth of vineyards and producers to choose from. On the other it can be seen as fascinating in its complexity, rewarding in its thrilling quality and, if chosen correctly, have a consistency of quality across vintages whilst retaining each year its own style and identity. Burgundy is also unique within the wine-growing regions of France in that it exports more of its production than is consumed on the home market. Some 60% leaves the country with over a quarter heading for the UK. Unquestionably we like our Claret in the UK, but it is Burgundy that is showing remarkable growth for Merchants such as ourselves, who specialise in seeking out the established, top quality wine-growers as well as new finds from among the burgeoning number of young Burgundian wine-making talents. Today, first class Domaines will seldom, if ever, have a disaster and if they do, the wine will be sold off in bulk and not bottled under the Domaine label. Therefore the Domaine label is more of a quality guarantee than ever before, with vintage variation offering differences in style and longevity. At the top end the region is in good shape, not only because of a higher demand than ever before and not just thanks to the widely-lauded quality of the region’s household names, but perhaps more than anything else it is the crop of talented young wine-growers that points to Burgundy’s rude health. Whether it is Bachelet-Monnot in Maranges, Vincent Dancer in Chassagne, Domaine du Comte Liger Belair in Vosne-Romanée or Arnaud Mortet in Gevrey-Chambertin, young growers in Burgundy have already started to carve out impressive reputations. From Pouilly-Fuissé in the South through to the Côte d’Or and then Chablis in the North, our enthusiasm, and that of our customers, for the whole of Burgundy is unabated. At J&B we are, therefore, proud to be one of the UK’s biggest importers of fine burgundy, buying from over 50 Domaines.