Many wines have a nice story. Some have a sad tale. But wines with legendary stories, most often come from legendary terroir. La Bourgogne is the wine French region that produces fine, varietal red and white wines—of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. La Bourgogne translates to “Burgundy” in English. And these wines whisper lovely nuances of their deep roots and legendary heritage—in a language anyone can understand. The Burgundian terrain presents a compact arrangement of microclimates with a complex assortment of altitudes, slopes, exposures and soil types. And Burgundy wines receive their quality classifications—appellations—based on the region, village or individual vineyard where the grapes are grown.
Inside Burgundy’s Cote de Beaune region, in the town of Pommard is a Premier Cru vineyard, Chaponnieres where Domaine Parent’s Pinot Noir grapes grow on vines that are 45 to 70 years old. Domaine Parent moved from Volnay to Pommard in 1803, and one of their early customers was Thomas Jefferson, who brought these wines back to America. Today Ann Parent is one of Burgundy’s top winemakers. She grafts vines onto the old rootstock in order to preserve the history of the family’s vineyards and makes wines of depth, complexity and balance. Her Domaine Parent Pommard Premiere Cru 2006 ($85) is a full-bodied Pinot Noir with nuances of black cherry, spice and smoke, with cellar potential of six to 12 years.
The northernmost section of Burgundy is the region and the town of Chablis. In this Chardonnay region, the Servin family traces its roots to 1652. At Les Clos vineyard, Francois Servin grows and makes quality Chardonnay in the true Chablis style. His wines are full, rich with fine minerality. His Domaine Servin Les Clos Grand Cru 2007 ($80) offers notes of caramel, lemon, and brioche, is dry and crisp. Cellar this wine for optimal drinking pleasure. It can be held for 10 plus years. During this time its beautiful story will further evolve.