Bourgogne has applied some new math to count its AOCs. They have shed their claim to 100 AOCs and reorganized their appellations to fit within a count of 84.
I am pleased to share my Burgundy wine tour experience with the Wine Scholar Guild, as it was the trip of a lifetime. My wife and I arrived a couple of days early and enjoyed fine wine and dining in Paris before our quick train trip over to Beaune (via Dijon). We spent Sunday on our own, touring the Hospices de Beaune, wandering the city streets and having a lovely dinner.
Sadly, time has marched on, since the fantastic Bourgogne Immersion Trip I took with the Wine Scholar Guild lead by Andrew Jefford, October 23 – 28, 2016. Everyone on the trip was definitely a “wine nerd” but the group was composed of a mix of wine industry professionals, wine students of all levels that had “day jobs” and just wine appreciators. I had been on a few wine trips previously that were organized by friends or non-winegroups like Backroads (biking and wine). However, I had never gone on such a blockbuster, action-packed wine trip as this one. So for future participants here are 5 items to keep in mind so you have an incredible trip.
Barolo and Burgundy share many similarities. Their highest quality red grapes - Nebbiolo and Pinot Noir - are thin-skinned, late-ripening grapes that prefer mid-level altitudes. They produce wines pale in color yet high in perfume and acidity. These two regions also focus on terroir and talk with great reverence about their crus.
They also like to dispute their crus. Barolo's Bussia is Burgundy's Clos Vougeot; most argue that both are too large. Monprivato, like Clos de Tart, is a monopole. Others feel that declassifying makes the most sense - Lalou Bize Leroy is notorious for declassifying her top wines into lower cuvées and Maria Theresa Mascarello exclusively blends crus to show a representation of Barolo rather than a specific terroir. It's surprising to see just how many parallels these two distinguished regions possess.
Christy Canterbury MW is a Manhattan-based journalist, speaker and judge. Short-listed for the 2014 Louis Roederer Online Wine Communicator of the Year Award, she writes for Decanter, TimAtkin.com, Wine Enthusiast Online, Snooth and Beverage Media (among others.)
She has contributed to three books, including the GOURMAND AWARD-winning Rock and Vine. A shopping fanatic, Christy previously bought wine, beer and booze across the US for Smith & Wollensky Restaurant Group and around the globe for Culinary Concepts by Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
It has been called Burgundy’s “lost” region; others have referred to it as Burgundy’s “forgotten” area. But, how can this be when it appears to be the southern extension of the acclaimed Cote d’Or? This session will investigate the reasons for the muddled reputation of Chalonnaise wines. Don will also unveil the progressive steps being taken to move the wines of the Chalonnaise to their proper, elevated position within the hierarchy of Burgundy wines.
For 30 years, Don Kinnan has been active in the fine wine trade, both on a business and personal level. Since his initial visit to Burgundy in 1973, he has returned numerous times exploring the intricacies of the region and its wines.
Kinnan joined Kobrand Corporation, a family-owned wine importer and owner of Maison Louis Jadot, in 1985, covering the Washington, DC, Virginia and West Virginia areas. In 1992, he was promoted to Director of Education and was responsible for Educational Services nationwide. For the next 20 years, he conducted over 60 seminars, annually, for distributor sales forces, trade groups, and consumers.
Kinnan’s passion for wine is evidenced by his involvement in numerous professional organizations. He has been cited by the U. S. Government for his role as founder of the Society for American Wines in Canada. He founded and acted as President of the Decanter Club in Washington, DC, and frequently presents to groups such as the Society of Wine Educators, where he holds that organization’s highest credential, CWE (Certified Wine Educator). He is also a member of the society’s executive committee and board of directors. In 2012, Kinnan will be the lead instructor in the Wine Scholar Guild’s new Master Burgundy Certificate program.
Kinnan received his undergraduate degree from Penn State University and his masters from Johns Hopkins. He had a long and distinguished military career in the US Army, from which he retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. While in the Army, Kinnan graduated from the Defense Department’s Language Institute for French, the Command and General Staff College, and served as an instructor and, subsequently, as chief of the South East Asian Studies Section at the US Army Intelligence School.
Marsannay begins the Côte d'Or of Burgundy on its northern end. Known for many, many years for its rosé, it has been largely overlooked otherwise. It missed out on the 1936 Burgundy classification, but it finally received recognition in 1987 for all three colors of wine.
Today, despite the sharp rise in quality production and the further delineation of vineyards, there are still no Premiers Crus, and a good portion of the surface area is classified as Bourgogne rather than village. The first appeal for re-classifications was submitted in 2002, and a second one was submitted in 2005. Alas, the dossier was entirely ignored. By the time INAO looked at the proposal in 2011, updates were required.
The tenacious, energetic and visionary producers of Marsannay did so and are still waiting to hear back from INAO…and making increasingly exciting wines with each passing vintage.
Christy Canterbury is one of twenty-nine US Masters of Wine. She is a journalist, public speaker and judge based in Manhattan.
Christy’s articles have been published in Decanter, Wine Enthusiast, Food Arts, Sommelier Journal, Beverage Media, TASTED and on Snooth, TimAtkin.com and several other blogs, including her own. Christy is the Consulting Editor of the recently released book, Rock & Vine, and the Italy Editor for the Professional Wine Reference.
Her recent public speaking appearances include VinExpo, the European Wine Bloggers’ Conference, the Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair, the Women in Wine Leadership Symposium and TEXSOM.
Prior to going independent, Christy was the Global Beverage Director for Culinary Concepts by Jean-Georges Vongerichten and the National Wine Director for Smith & Wollensky Restaurant Group. In retail, she sourced wines from within and outside Italy for Italian Wine Merchants.
Interested in mastering Bourgogne wines? Sign up for the Bourgogne Master-Level program.
Before phylloxera, Chablis and the wine-producing villages that surround it (Saint-Bris-le-Vineux, Irancy, Coulanges-la-Vineuse, Chitry-le-Fort, Joigny, Tonnerre, Epineuil and Vézelay) was the largest wine producing area in France.
In three short years, from 1877 to 1880, production dropped from 2,802,853 hectolitres of wine to 194,755 hectoliters – a 93 percent drop!
Chablis managed to recover, but the rest of the region remains a sleeping giant.
Learn the history and find out if there is to be a phoenix rising midst the ashes.
Living in Sweden, Ola Bergman is in love with Burgundy which he visits every summer.
On each visit, he avidly visits vineyards and producers from all over the region and compiles his encounters with those who make Burgundy and its wines into a series of fascinating interviews posted on his website: Bergman's Bourgogne
Bergman's Bourgogne also includes a wealth of information on the various villages, places to stay at, restaurants not to miss, etc.
Join Jay Youmans MW as he discusses the wines of Chablis. He will describe the characteristic aromas and flavors of the different levels of Chablis, ranging from Petit Chablis to Grand Cru. He will explain how terroir and winemaking impact this unique style of Chardonnay.
Jay has been involved in the wine industry for nearly 30 years. He owns Rock Creek Wine Merchants LLC. and The Capital Wine School, www.capitalwineschool.com. He is a Certified Burgundy Wine Educator, an Advanced Level Sommelier, a Certified Wine Educator, and a Master of Wine.
Jay is the 21st American to pass the MW exam, considered the most difficult of its kind in the world. His dissertation was on cool climate viticulture. He also won the Vina Errazuriz award for an outstanding paper on the business of wine.