white burgundy

Burgundy (White)

We have a friend in the wine trade who will tell you in all seriousness that the world's greatest white wines are made from Riesling in the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, and whilst the wines from here are often extraordinary, there can surely be few who would argue that they outclass the great Chardonnays of the Côte de Beaune. The monks of the great medieval monasteries of Cîteaux and Cluny knew a thing or two and it is no accident that, for reds and whites, the finest vineyard sites were in monastic hands until the monasteries were despoiled by the revolutionaries. Some of the Mosel's best sites were also owned by monasteries, but nowhere can this have been so comprehensive as in Burgundy, where the 11th and 12th century monastic movement was so extraordinarily successful.

Today, white wine production is focused mainly on the three famous villages of Meursault, Puligny Montrachet and Chassagne Montrachet, with the Grands Crus, apart from the more northerly Corton Charlemagne (and one (Musigny) in the Côte de Nuits), divided between the communes of Puligny and Chassagne. As so often in Burgundy, the most sought after lends its name to the village - hence the profusion of 'double barrelled' village names. However, most producers in the Côte de Beaune make red and white wines - and many villages (Savigny Les Beaune and Pernand Vergelesses for example), while better known for their red wine production, also make very fine whites, which cannot command the prices of their more famous neighbours. The same is true in reverse - reds from Chassagne can be stunning - as produced by Fontaine Gagnard and Gagnard Delagrange.


White

 
 
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Domaine Simon Bize

On Monday 21st October 2013 we received the tragic news that Patrick had died the afternoon before.  We had been due to see him two days later.  Much has since been written about Patrick and the esteem and affection in which he was held, having run this 22 hectare domaine with such self-effacing flair for so long.  With his keen humour, great personal warmth, and winemaking brilliance, Patrick will be much missed, and we extend our sympathies to his widow Chisa and their children, and the rest of his family.  Patrick’s memory will live on through the bottles which lie in cellars around the world, and through these 2013s – picked just weeks before he died.

At 22 hectares, this is a large estate by Burgundian standards.  It is now run by Patrick's widow Chisa with the brilliant assistance of Guillaume Bott, who trained at Sauzet.  The domaine's origins go back to the 1880s when Simon Bize (Patrick's great-grandfather) bought the first vines.  He was succeeded in 1918 by his son, also Simon, who was able to buy more vineyards in the years after the Great War.  His son, Simon III, who took over the domaine in 1950, began domaine bottling, establishing the reputation of the estate as one of the finest sources of Savigny Les Beaune.  His son, Patrick, built the present winery in 1972 and also added to the vineyard holdings, considerably enhancing this great domaine.

 
Patrick Bize
2018 Bourgogne Blanc Les Champlains, Domaine Simon Bize
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£181.00
£249.00
 

Domaine Marc-Antonin Blain

As well as working with his maternal grandmother, Marie-Josephe Gagnard (see Domaine Gagnard Delagrange), Marc-Antonin Blain is also making his own wines.  In keeping with the wise traditions of this exceptional Burgundian family, ownership of small parcels of vines are passed down the generations each year, and Marc-Antonin now has 1.16 hectares.  He has also taken over buildings in Chassagne, next to his parents (Domaine Blain Gagnard), which came from Marie-Josephe’s mother’s family (Bachelet) and were previously used by her father, Edmond Delagrange.

 
image domain
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Marc-Antonin Blain
 2019-2023
 12 Bottles
£388.00
£498.00
 
2017 Bâtard Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Marc-Antonin Blain x 6
 2020-2026
 6 Bottles
£974.00
£1,185.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Marc-Antonin Blain
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£388.00
£498.00
 
2018 Bâtard Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Marc-Antonin Blain x 6
 2021-2027
 6 Bottles
£996.00
£1,211.40
 

Domaine de Bois d'Yver

Run by Georges Pico and his son Thomas, the domaine grew out of Georges' grandfather's domaine Pico Race, based in the village of Courgis, just south west of Chablis.  The 20 hectares of vineyards are farmed organically, and the wines express beautifully the steely and mineral qualities of Chardonnay which are classic to the Chablis region.

 
Cuverie at Bois dYver
2007 Chablis 1er Cru Montmain, Domaine de Bois d'Yver
 2010-2013
 12 Bottles
£153.50
£213.00
Similarly classic, but with an extra dimension thanks to the greater weight and concentration of fruit. 

Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils

Bouchard Père et Fils is the largest vineyard owner of the Côte d'Or, with truly spectacular holdings in the Côte de Nuits and, more particularly, in the Côte de Beaune - where almost all the greatest sites are represented, all the way up to Chevalier and Montrachet.  The firm was founded in 1731, and has had its headquarters in the Château de Beaune, with its magnificent 15th centuray cellars, since 1820.  In 1995 the Bouchards were bought out by Joseph Henriot, whose family has been long-established in Champagne.  The house benefitted from much needed investment in the years which followed - some 30 additional hectares of vineyards were bought and, in 2005, the ultra modern winery came into operation, giving Philippe Prost and his winemaking team all they need to make some of Burgundy's finest wines.

 
Bouchard C's Ch de Beaune
2015 Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru, Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils x 6
 2019-2025
 6 Bottles
£687.00
£840.00
 
2015 Chevalier Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils x 6
 2019-2025
 6 Bottles
£1,412.00
£1,710.00
"A slightly riper array is composed by notes of petrol, various white orchard fruit, spice and a hint of wood toast. The rich and relatively full-bodied flavors exhibit ample minerality along with plenty of sappy dry extract while delivering excellent length on the impressively long finish where hints of lemon and mandarin orange surface. This is a Chevalier that should be approachable younger than usual yet the material is here to repay mid-term cellaring. 93" Allen Meadows in Burghound 
2016 Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru, Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils x 6
 2019-2025
 6 Bottles
£695.00
£850.20
 

Pierre Bourée

2018 Meursault, Pierre Bourée
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£380.50
£489.00
 

Domaine Faiveley

A house with a long history and today the largest vineyard owner in Burgundy, Faiveley was founded in 1825 by Pierre Faiveley.  The foundations of its modern success however were laid by Georges Faiveley, who saw the firm through the difficult inter-war years when it was said that a new barrel cost more than the wine which filled it.  His grandson François, handed control over to his own son Erwan – the 7th generation – in 2005.  A new team was quickly put in place – most significantly perhaps including Bernard Hervé as Managing Director – who supervised the transformation of Bouchard after Joseph Henriot’s purchase, and an extremely talented winemaker, Jérôme Flous.  Faiveley's winery and principle cellars are in Nuits St Georges - the nerve centre of a genuinely world class operation.

 
Faiveley vines
2015 Bienvenues Bâtard Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Faiveley x 6
 2019-2025
 6 Bottles
£1,312.00
£1,590.00
 

Domaine Fontaine Gagnard

This outstanding domaine, producing among the very finest white wines of the Côte d’Or, is run by Céline Fontaine with the still very much active involvement of her parents Richard and Laurence – particularly since the birth of her daughter Lison on 2nd July 2014.  Demand for these wines has become enormously strong in recent vintages, and production of the Grands Crus in particular is always very limited. The domaine produces wines of exceptional richness, finesse, and kaleidoscopic mineral complexity. While Fontaine's stellar reputation is based primarily on the immense quality of his whites, the domaine also produces very lovely reds, which are not only beautifully pure expressions of Pinot Noir but also very attractively priced.

More information can be found on the domaine's website: http://www.domaine-fontaine-gagnard.com/

 
Fontaine\'s Cuverie
2013 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeot, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2016-2021
 12 Bottles
£418.00
£531.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2019-2023
 12 Bottles
£370.50
£477.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru La Maltroie, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2020-2025
 12 Bottles
£503.00
£636.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeot, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2020-2025
 12 Bottles
£503.00
£636.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£370.50
£477.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru La Maltroie, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2021-2026
 12 Bottles
£503.00
£636.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Les Caillerets, Domaine Fontaine Gagnard
 2021-2026
 6 Bottles
£331.50
£414.00
 

Domaine Gagnard Delagrange

Since the death of the wonderful Jacques Gagnard in July 2009, this domaine has been run by his widow Marie-Josèphe (daughter of Edmond Delagrange) and their grandson Marc-Antonin Blain.  Over the last fifteen years or so, most of the vineyards have been handed on to their two daughters (Laurence, married to Richard Fontaine; and Claudine, married to Jean-Marc Blain).  However, the domaine continues to produce outstanding, long-lived wines from the approximately 3 hectares it retains.  These include a 1er Cru red Chassagne from vines planted in 1928, the year of Jacques' birth.

 
Tasting in the Gagnard cellar
2007 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeots, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2010-2020
 12 Bottles
£390.00
£495.00
Very fine and precise, with lots of freshness and delicious white fruit character.  
2013 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Boudriotte, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2016-2022
 12 Bottles
£418.00
£531.00
 
2015 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeots, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2018-2023
 12 Bottles
£429.00
£546.00
 
2016 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeots, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2019-2024
 12 Bottles
£456.52
£579.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2019-2023
 12 Bottles
£355.50
£459.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeots, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2020-2025
 12 Bottles
£455.50
£579.00
 
2017 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Boudriotte, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2020-2026
 12 Bottles
£470.50
£597.00
 
2017 Bâtard Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange x 6
 2021-2027
 6 Bottles
£794.00
£969.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£355.50
£459.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Morgeots, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2021-2026
 12 Bottles
£455.50
£579.00
 
2018 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Boudriotte, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange
 2021-2027
 12 Bottles
£470.50
£597.00
 
2018 Bâtard Montrachet Grand Cru, Domaine Gagnard Delagrange x 6
 2022-2028
 6 Bottles
£794.00
£969.00
 

Domaine Marc Morey

This 9 hectare estate, with its cellars in Chassagne Montrachet, is run by Sabine Mollard, grand-daughter of Marc Morey, while her father Bernard retains an overseeing eye.  Along with the Gagnard family (see above) the Morey family dominates the village; Bernard and Sabine have made this the finest of the various Morey estates.  Winemaking is traditional in style, with great emphasis placed on the quality of fruit produced in the vineyard.

 
Marc Morey cellar
2016 Chassagne Montrachet Blanc 1er Cru Les Caillerets, Domaine Marc Morey
 2019-2024
 12 Bottles
£599.00
£750.00
 
2018 Bourgogne Blanc, Domaine Marc Morey
 2020-2023
 12 Bottles
£205.50
£279.00
 
2018 St Aubin 1er Cru Charmois, Domaine Marc Morey
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£345.50
£447.00
 
2018 Puligny Montrachet, Domaine Marc Morey
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£448.00
£570.00
 

Jean Rijckaert

After many years making some of the most interesting wines which the Mâconnais has to offer, Jean has found a way of securing his legacy as he approaches retirement.  For the last year, and for one more year to come, he will work alongside Florent Rouve, whom he first met via his involvement with the famous viticultural Lycée de Davayé.  Cuverie and cellar space is being rented from Domaine des Deux Roches in Davayé, and Florent – a great admirer of Jean’s philosophy and techniques – is steadily taking on the Rijckaert mantle.  2013 is the first vintage to be made in the winery in Davayé.  Jean and Florent illustrate how intelligent vineyard management, winemaking and élévage can produce spectacular results from vineyards that more often underperform in the hands of others.

 
Rijckaert
2017 Viré Clessé Les Vercherres Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Jean Rijckaert
 2019-2023
 12 Bottles
£138.00
£225.00
 
2018 St Véran En Crêches Vieilles Vignes, Jean Rijckaert
 2020-2024
 12 Bottles
£175.50
£243.00
 

Domaine Marc Roy

Alexandrine Roy’s great-grandfather founded this small domaine which has been bottling its production since 1982.   Alexandrine took responsibility for it in 2003.  She coaxes wines of the most exceptional quality from her 4 hectares of village vineyards – sadly the domaine has no 1er or Grand Cru holdings, though from 2011 vintage they have some ‘La Justice’ which is another of Gevrey’s finest village sites (along with Clos Prieur).  Alexandrine brings exceptional passion to her winemaking, and everything is done by hand (or, in the case of pressing, by foot!).  This is a source for wines of the most outstanding purity, very much in the Fourrier style for example.

 
Domaine Marc Roy label
2015 Marsannay Blanc Les Champs Perdrix, Domaine Marc Roy
 2017-2021
 12 Bottles
£291.50
£381.00
 
2016 Marsannay Blanc Les Champs Perdrix, Domaine Marc Roy
 2018-2022
 12 Bottles
£326.50
£423.00
 
2017 Marsannay Blanc Les Champs Perdrix, Domaine Marc Roy
 2019-2023
 12 Bottles
£338.00
£438.00
 

Etienne Sauzet

Sauzet is among the greatest of Burgundy's white wine producers.  Gerard Boudot, with his daughter Emilie and son-in-law Benoit Riffault, runs this immaculate operation.  We always think that the hosepipe illustrates the extraordinary precision and attention to detail in the cellar!  The wines are sensational.

 
Sauzets famous hose pipe
2018 Puligny Montrachet 1er Cru Folatières En La Richarde, Etienne Sauzet x 6
 2021-2026
 6 Bottles
£624.00
£765.00
 

Vignerons des Terres Secrètes

A co-operative winery founded by a group of growers in the Mâconnais village of Prissé in 1928 the Cave de Prissé (as it used to be called) has become one of the most successful of its type; since it merged with the co-operatives of the neighbouring villages of Verzé and Sologny, it sources grapes from more than 400 small-scale growers who together own almost 980 hectares of the surrounding vineyards.  Success on this scale is the result of one thing – consistently high quality.

 
Maconnais vines
2016 Mâcon Blanc, Terres Secrètes, Blasons de Bourgogne, Prissé x 6
 2017-2020
 6 Bottles
£48.00
£73.50
 

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