Wine Buying Guide for Bourgogne, Region by Region: Best Chardonnay and Pinot Noir

Chablis: The Most Emblematic Chardonnay

If you are looking for a Chardonnay that brings you to the seashore, this is the destination. Although they have a history of mass producing in the 60’s – 70’s, they corrected that and are focusing on their fantastic kimmeridgian soil patrimony. This is a terroir made from trillions of shellfish that lived there millions of years ago when Chablis was covered by the sea. It is only natural that this brings to the forefront salinity, acidity and mineral elements as if you were at the ocean. With its 17 Premiers Crus and 7 Grand Crus parcels, it is one of most symbolic sub region of France, Domaine de la Meulière is a perfect example.

Macon: The Best Value Driven Chardonnay of Bourgogne

The most southern region helps Chardonnay to be more approachable with an integrated acidity thanks to a warmer climate. The well-known villages are Pouilly Fuissé, Saint Veran and Viré Clessé. They benefit from terroir where you can find, in a lesser concentration, Kimmeridjean soil. The Chardonnay vines are planted on elevated grounds which provide cooler and overall better climate. As far as red goes, the only varietal permitted in “Macon” red wine is Gamay while any Pinot Noir will be classified as “Bourgogne”.

Côte Chalonnaise : The Best Value Pinot Noir and Cremant Sparkling

Terroirs are superb and complex. Micro climate are very interesting and it’s worth spending time to find quaint historical village and winery, like Mercurey, Givry, Ruilly. The Côte Chalonnaise (like Domaine de l’Eveche) are regional sub appellation and perfect wines for everyday. Don’t hesitate to go for their reasonably priced Village and Premier Cru Village, like Domaine Deliance Givry 1er Cru. Another fantastic discovery lies with their method Champenoise “Cremant de Bourgogne”, where they can use almost all varietals of Champagne. Domaine Deliance Cremant Brut Reserve is a perfect example since a Decanter critic reviewed it as “you would be forgiven to mistake this cremant for a champagne”.

Côte d’Or: Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from Another Realm, Côtes de Beaune and Côtes de Nuits

This is where everything started, where the Cistercian depicted all the different terroirs and method to respect their unique qualities. This region tends to be more expensive and for good reason. Beaune villages red wine will be slightly lighter and elegant, however, their Chardonnay are known to be the best. The most representative examples are: Montrachet, Meursault and the famous Corton Charlemagne parcel. It was named after Charlemagne, planted at the request of his Queen, who insisted he drank white wine so he would stop staining his beard (Arnaud Boue Corton Charlemagne). When it comes to Pinot Noir, Côtes de Nuits represent the best villages, therefore, the most expensive and for good reason. Nonetheless, you can start with Arnaud Boue Hautes Côtes de Nuit Blanc and [Red]. These wines will assure you a fantastic experience of this region. Any village tier can become a long lasting memory (like Arnaud Boue Gevrey Chambertin, the most emblematic village of all Côtes de Nuits for Pinot Noir), and a Village Premier Cru  depth and complexity are just out of this world, like Arnaud Boue Nuits Saint George 1er cru “Les Chaboeufs”.