This quality hierarchy is important to
keep in mind when studying the
wines of Burgundy. Most of the wine
produced here is of the regional
level, labeled simply as Bourgogne
rouge or blanc. These wines offer
great value, and there are some real
hidden gems in this mix.
Communal level follows the regional
level, and you will not start seeing
vineyard names on the label until
you hit Premier Cru status.
One reason why Grand Cru and
Premier Cru Burgundy is so
expensive is a matter of simple
supply and demand... look how
small the production level is!
Burgundy, France is home to some of the
greatest , and undeniably some of the most
expensive, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay
offerings in the world.
This region has been producing fine wine for
hundreds of years, and is steeped in history.
This presentation will touch on some of the
major points of interest that you should be
familiar with in order to properly sell these
wines to your guests.
The northern most sub-region of
Burgundy is Chablis. It is primarily
known for it’s crisp, high acid
Chardonnay, which usually has a low
level of oak treatment. These wines are
terrific aperitif wines, as well as being
solid pairings for oysters, seafood and
The Chablis sub-region consists of 7
Grand Cru vineyards (Bougros, Les
Preuses, Vaudésir, Grenouilles, Valmur,
Les Clos, Blanchot).
The region is bisected by the river
Serein, and has a cool climate wich
makes viticulture a difficult task.
The region is known for it’s Kimmeridge
clay deposits that add to the wines
The Cote d’Or is comprised of two
sub-regions: The Cote de Nuits and
the Cote de Beaune.
The Cote de Nuits is known for its vivid
expression of fine Pinot Noir, with
some of the best examples of fine
wine, anywhere. A strong knowledge
of this region is essential to any
aspiring wine professional, as it is sure
to come up in any fine wine
conversation about Pinot Noir and
You hit prime Chardonnay territory in
the Cote de Beaune, the lower sub-
region of the Coye d’Or. A simple
google of the Burgundy region will
show you astronomically priced wines
and historical dissertations on the
wines of this region.
Here you see some of the famous villages
in the Cote d’or, specifically the Cote de
Beaune, which are responsible for the
high cost wines that people pay hundreds
of dollars for.
It is not uncommon to see a bottle on a
restaurant wine list for well over one or
two thousand dollars.
Here we see the lower half of the Burgundy wine region, consisting of the Cote
Chalonaise (producing good value red and white wines), Maconnais (again with
some great values such as Pouilly-Fuisse) and Beaujoulais.... everyone’s
Beaujoulais is predominantly made
from the Gamay grape. The red wines
tend to be light and fruity, and can be
made from a process called carbonic
maceration (which we will save for
However, the Cru’s can produce very
interesting and ageworthy wines of
Here are the Cru’s (with
Côte de Brouilly [coat duh BREW-yee]
Moulin à Vent [MOO-lan ah vahn]