I’ve been ignoring Burgundy for far too long, which is very telling in a way. This wine region is so complicated and so difficult to understand clearly that it is intimidating to even begin exploring it. The appellations are small but then they are divvied up between so many producers that it is very difficult to keep track of them all. For example, the Clos de Vougeot appellation is a 123-acre plot of land with 85 different owners. Throughout the last few centuries these plots have been getting smaller and smaller as they get passed down through the generations.
Negociants play an important role in Burgundy. Until the 1980s almost all wines were sold through negociants and almost none were bottled at the estate. Because Burgundy is a land-locked region winemakers relied on negociants for all international trade which built the reputation of Burgundy. Since the 1980, producers have been bottling grand cru and 1er cru wines at their estates. The negociant’s role has changed in that the reputable ones play a greater role in the vineyard often buying grapes from their suppliers rather than finished wine. The best negociants are the standard bearers for the Burgundy region : Drouhin, Bouchard Père, Louis Jadot and Leroy. Still today only 24% of Burgundy wines are estate bottled.
Burgundy lovers are passionate about what the region and terroir do to the grapes that are authorized for the region: Pinot Noir for red wine and Chardonnay for white wine. The two grape varieties are grown all over the world now but many people would argue that the Burgundy region produces some of the most elegant wines from these grapes anywhere in the world. The wines are prized for their balance, expression and in very good vintages, absolute perfection.
We at SoDivin are interested in the top ranked, estate bottled wines and the top negociants of the region, in short, the best wines of Burgundy. Producers such as:
As SoDivin specializes in old vintages you will finda concentration of vintages from the40s, 50s, 60s, and 70s. Burgundies can age just as well as Bordeaux, depending on the vintage, of course. Philippe recently gave Noel and I a taste of a 1947 Pommard from the negociant Genève. This wine was absolutely delicious and still going strong. Have fun exploring Burgundy wines yourself.