Travels in Burgundy 2019

week 45 visits #2018BurgundyReport

By billn on November 09, 2019 #degustation#travels in burgundy 2019

Back home for a very short weekend before taking the road back to Beaune tomorrow evening.

My last visits for the ‘2018 whites’ report are now made, and I’ve already started the transition to building up the list of red domaines. As a teaser for the forthcoming reports, you can see the mugshots of this week’s unfortunate victims!

catching up

By billn on November 07, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

It’s been all go here in the last couple of weeks – though you’d hardly notice from the posts here. Thankfully Mark de Morey (de la Vosne) has been prolific in the last couple of weeks!

This week has been the perfect example; Monday a relatively easy start; a vertical of a well-known Beaune followed by my last ‘white wine domaine’ visit that will (still) feature in the October report. Additionally, I had to arrange new winter tyres for the scooby-doo – they will be fitted tomorrow, after 3 domaine visits, just before heading home to Switzerland. Tuesday saw 160 Beaujolais Nouveau to be tasted – some people comment ‘courage!’ but that’s for an entirely different arena – that said, you definitely have to grind out the last 60 or so! The notes/infos will be online, here in the Diary, well before the 3rd Thursday of this month.

To celebrate finishing the marathon tasting, the local Beaujolais team took me, and the other tasters, out to a restaurant in the evening, but I was sat in the back of this (seeming) rollercoaster of a sportively driven car, far too hot, so came within a hair of vomiting – that was pretty shitty – I can say that today, 2 days later, my head is practically back in a normal zone!

Wednesday – well that must be Mâconnais! The other ‘last’ visits for the ‘white’ October report. Here I should meet, in two locations, all of the AVBS – well, I managed most of them anyway. I haven’t counted how many wines, but certainly 100 or more – my teeth are now über-sensitive and über-unhappy! And people seem to think that this job is fun! 😉

Today was practically a holiday – only 4 visits and a mere 37 wines tastes (but with tooth pain!) – luxury! So that’s my (mainly) rainy week in Beaune – so far! Here are a few images from the week:

burgundy, week 43 2019

By billn on October 25, 2019 #reports#travels in burgundy 2019

This week’s lucky recipients of my visits for October’s report!

It’s been a pleasure to be in the Côtes this week; the vines resplendent, though – photographically speaking – the light has been sub-optimal for the best photos, with mainly greyer skies. But still a pleasure!

The leaves in some places have dropped – whole sections – clearly there are places where clone type trumps the weather – but generally all is still beautiful – maybe the chance of some nice pictures over the weekend.

High-plains Pommard

By billn on October 23, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

Over Platière towards Pommard.

A platière is a shelf or a plateau, but in Pommard – high up in Pommard – is the lieu-dit of La Platière; 3.3 hectares of which is classified as villages, and 2.5 hectares premier cru. This is more of a gentle slope from high up on one of Pommard’s valleys than a real plateau – but hey!

Though not an official lieu-dit, practically all of the premier cru part is in a walled section next to Les Arvelets, whose portal/gateway proclaims Clos de Platière – well, almost!


The Clos de Platière was a place I discovered nearly twenty years ago whilst walking my dog – what a wonderful place I thought, with brilliant views back to Pommard – I also thought that this would be a great Clos/monopole to own, even if there isn’t such a climat! Back to the ‘almost’ – the stone gateway is almost illegible today – unlike 20 years ago!

But why was I back in Platière?

Well, yesterday, like waiting for a bus, having not tasted a Pommard labelled Platière for years, two came along at two domaines on the same morning. It jogged my memory of that place – so indeed why not take a jog up there?

Château de Meursault added quite a number of hectares to their exploitation in 2018, vines that had been rented by Bejot since 2009, but it is the de Mérodes that own them. Bejot took these on, plus other vines at the same time as the de Mérodes entrusted (some of their) vines in Corton to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. Now it’s Château de Meursault’s turn with almost 4 hectares of Platière, including, seemingly all the 1er cru section. Shortly thereafter, I also tasted the Platière of Jacques Prieur – or rather their Labruyère-Prieur label which is used for contract purchases.

So these two buses arriving at the same time reminded me to drift up to the high plains (sorry Clint) of Pommard – I still love the combination of calmness and great views in that place!

mugshots from week 42, 2019

By billn on October 19, 2019 #reports#travels in burgundy 2019

Some very classy wine tasted this week – my thanks to the domaines that made some time available to see me – of-course all will be in the October report, published next month.

The week was a mix of sun and much needed rain – the latter, of-course, less photogenic. We also had the first day with typically autumnal weather – a misty morning that slowly gave way to sunshine – that was Wednesday. A week with 400,000 km on the clock of the scoobydoo too!

day 2 & 3 of tasting 2018s…

By billn on October 09, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

36 appointments now confirmed for October’s ‘white domaines’ report – a few more are still open, but that would be fine for the report.

Some images for you that are mainly Pommard and Meursault – reflecting more where I ran, than where I actually tasted 😉

time to attack the 2018s…

By billn on October 07, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

Today was the first real day of my 2018 tasting campaign – 2018 Whites for my October Report – starting and finishing (late) in Puligny-Montrachet. So far I’ve over 30 appointments booked for October and I’m still waiting for responses from about 20 more – if I get at least 10 of those, I’ll be happy.

I hit the road early from Bern, enjoying the rain all the way to Dôle – but it was particularly bracing around Besançon where the speed of the windscreen-wipers needed some augmentation! Almost magically, from Dôle onwards, and for my whole day in the Côte de Beaune, it was dry. Well, maybe not completely dry underfoot when jogging through the vines of Chassagne at lunchtime!

Tomorrow is a lite day, but Wednesday to Friday will keep me much busier.

sun(day) in beaujolais…

By billn on September 29, 2019 #travels in burgundy 2019

Mont Blanc far in the distance, on the right shoulder (as you look) is Chamonix – somewhere!

Mont Blanc was showing well in the sunshine today – all 30°C worth of sun – not bad for the end of September.

I also saw some of the last pickers of the 2019 harvest today – in the hills above Fleurie – the hinterland behind Fleurie’s La Madone – it must be cooler here, everything else looked picked. The wind was gusting in the late afternoon – as we arrived back in Beaune, in the early evening, all was grey and a little damp – the wind had followed us!

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