Beaune vineyards

Old Aug 8th, 2010, 12:07 PM
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Beaune vineyards

Traveling to Beaune in September and would appreciate any recommendations on vineyards in the Beaune area. Will probably bike to them so if they were close together it would be a plus. Top 3? Thanks in advance.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 12:37 PM
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Head over to nearby Savigny-lès-Beaune, a small wine village with a château tasting room. We like the château's reds very much.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 12:39 PM
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A very clear answer:

The top vineyard in the area is the Charlemagne, a scenic half-round bluff which is easily recognizable from the plains. It is 3.5 miles north of Beaune, a little north of the village Aloxe-Corton.

On the top of the elliptic bluff, there is a forest, the Bois de Corton. On the slopes are some of the best vineyards of Bourgogne, on the left side (seen from Beaune), the world famous vineyard Corton-Charlemagne, on the right side, facing the village of Aloxe-Corton, les Pougets, les Perrieres, Corton, Clos du Roi (the King's vineyard) and several others. All all Grand Cru vineyards. It will be a pleasure to bike through these vineyards, you will see signs with the names of the vineyards and the winemakers.

Two miles southwest of Beaune is the village Pommard. The Pommard vineyards are "only" Premier Cru, but still very good. From Pommard southwards, there is Volnay, and then Meursault, all Premier Cru vineyards. Meurseult is famous for extremely rich, mineralic Chardonnays.

I have a book from a series called "Hugh Johnson's Wine Voyages" about Bourgogne written by Hubrecht Duijker. It has very detailed maps of the vineyards and descriptions of the best wineries. However, the book is written in German, but I assume an English version is available.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 12:44 PM
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Head up the Burgundy Wine Road north from Beaune a few kms and names of villages that grace prestigious bottles of Burgundy wine start appearing - like Nuits-Ste-Georges - and Giverny-Chambartin (sp?), et - spaced a few miles apart - the wine road meanders at the foot of foohills all clad with vineyards. Heading to Dijon from Beaune.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 12:45 PM
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I have to add:

In the villages, you will see dozens of wineries. Most of them offer tastings. In addition, there are consolidators with large stores who offer tastings.

However, keep in mind that a red Bourgogne needs AT LEAST 10 years to mature. Young wines taste bland and disappointing. The dilemma is: Those wineries who offer old wines for tastings are the bad ones (they were not able to sell their wines when they were young).

A very stylish way to get drunk right in the center of Beaune is the Marché aux Vins. It is a most impressive location, with a romantic cellar and a ruined church where you are handed a tastevin and where you can help yourself freely with tasting open bottles. Skip the first ones - the quality will be increasing.

http://www.marcheauxvins.com/
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 01:09 PM
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That would be Gevrey-Chambertin.

Most of the small wine villages have at least one tasting room.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 01:20 PM
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Gevrey-Chambertin (my favourite vineyard in Bourgogne, of course Grand Cru) is 20 miles north of Beaune. It is the northernmost of the famous wine villages in Bourgogne.

I do not know how far you will be able to bike. A worthy destination will be Clos de Vougeot Castle, about 15 miles north of Beaune. It is the oldest vineyard in Bourgogne and has a historic castle with a little museum, shop and tasting room inside.

From Beaune, you can simply bike northwards. The Charlemagne will be the first Grand Cru vineyards, others will follow, first Vosne-Romanée (Romanée Conti is the best vineyard), then Clos Vougeot and then Chambertin (Napoleon's favourite vineyard). Between Aloxe-Corton and Vosne-Romanée there is Nuit-St.-Georges with Premier Cru vineyards.
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 01:23 PM
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The stop we most enjoyed was a tasting lunch at Olivier Leflaive. We were walked through the very tiny village before our meal and then had a tour of the winery. The Puligny Montrachet is a dream wine...taste it if you possibly can....
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Old Aug 8th, 2010, 01:32 PM
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Leflaive also has a 15 (yes, 15) wine tasting dinner for 50ish euros. The first few aren't impressive and they thankfully advise you to have only a sip so you are in condition to appreciate the later, better bottles. The food is entirely forgettable.

But, supporting the comments above, the wines may be better someday but they're young and not so good now. We like the middle range white Burgundy better.

Puligny-Montrachet is a wonderfully charming little village. If you get the chance, stay at Domaine des Anges, www.domainedesangespuligny.com, alongside a square filled with chestnut trees and a block from the local caveau.
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