According to regulations, they must only be made from Chardonnay,
Pinot Noir, Gamay or Pinot Blanc to be considered true Burgundy wines, yet the most well
known wines are made from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir varieties and come from the Côte
However, viticulturally part of Burgundy are Beaujolais, Chablis, Côte Chalonnaise, and
Mâcon and Burgundy wines are often described as varied with complexity, yet
Because of historical tradition Burgundy wines are highly regarded and arguably because
they transmit the flavour of the land they are sometimes classed as the most exciting
wines in the world.
It is believed that the Burgundy area around Beaune has produced wine since approximately
300 AD and it was the Catholic Church that took over winemaking production in the Middle
But with the French Revolution, the vineyards were taken away from the nobility and church
estates and divided between the people of the area, however, even today, you will be able
to find wineries in restored monasteries.
The reputation, quality, and small numbers of production of the top wines mean high demand
and high prices. Did you know that Burgundy wines are
amongst the most expensive wines you can purchase in the world? In fact, some
consumers buy the high-end wines of this region purely for speculative purposes.
One of the very rare years was 1959, which produced wine that was considered the best of
the century and in 1963 some of the wine houses decided to seal and lay down over 2000
bottles of the very best Grand crus.
Within this region you will find a small town called Chablis, that uses Chardonnay grapes
to make the Chablis very dry white wine and in the Beaune area, you will find the full
bodied and heavy red wines that are produced using Pinot Noir grapes.
So while you are on holiday in Burgundy, do try and make the time to visit some of the
unique wineries. In fact, some places do offer tours where you can even go down into
their wine cellars and get to see the old oak barrels and the vintage wines laid out
ageing and why not try some wine whilst you are