In this column, we would like to provide you with useful information about the topic „wine“.
Our agenda for the coming months:
Wine and Health
The Chardonnay grape is a noble variety of wine, grown in the whole Burgundy area, where the wine stock has its origin.
It used to be called „Pinot Blanc” and is used for the production of white wines. Although the Chardonnay can adapt to almost all vineyard soils, it grows best on the clayey and chalky soils, here, in the Burgundy (Puligny-Montrachet, Meursault).
It blooms and ripens early, and must not be picked too late, as otherwise its distinctive acidity changes.
Of all grape varieties, the Chardonnay is the one with the most considerable growth in popularity over the last few years.
The Chardonnay grapes are vinified seperately.
In addition to being the most exclusive, the Burgundy Chardonnay is considered the benchmark standard of expressing terroir through Chardonnay. The Montrachets are noted for their high alcohol levels, often above 13%, as well as deep concentration of flavours.
The Chardonnay grape produces wines that are fresh, fruity, well-structured and elegant. Their colour is pale - to honey-yellow, their body is round and full with rather soft acidity. The aromas express flowers and dried fruits.
However, most of the Burgundy (Côte d'Or) wines, made from Chardonnay, will need at least three years in the bottle to develop enough to express the aromas and character of the wine. Hazelnut, licorice and spice are some of the flavours that can develop as these wines age.
The Aligoté grape is an autonomous type of grape with lots of character, from which rich, full-bodied white wines are produced, that are drunk young.
Its origin is in the Burgundy, where it is still the second most planted white wine grape, behind the Chardonnay grape, today.
It is grown for the production of light, slightly acid, simple white wines, to be drunk soon after bottleing.
The Aligoté grape has a huge vine growth. Its growth in flat areas are sometimes so high, that a specific yield reduction must be carried out, to obtain a good quality wine.
The white wines produced from the Aligoté grapes, are dry, firm and fresh.
Their colour is light to medium yellow. Their body is round, with flavours of nuts, apple, honey and hay flowers. Their acidity is stressed, fresh and lively.
In good vintages, these fresh, fruity wines with crisp acidity are equal to a good Chardonnay.
As they are inexpensive wines , they are consumed as a cocktail, pure or blended with the Crème de Cassis (kir, named after the former mayor of Dijon, Canon Kir).
The Pinot Noir grape is a significant, high quality variety of red wine, that loves cooler climates.
This vine belongs to the elite of all vines. It is an important basis for Champagne.
The Pinot Noir is one of the oldest grape varieties in the world. It’s origins here in the Burgundy, were mentioned in formal certificates from the 14th century. But probably, it was already cultivated here about a thousand years earlier.
This grape is frequently cultivated at a lot of places, but only a few places produce classy, high quality wines. The best come from the calcareous soils of the Burgundy (where we are, from the Côte de Beaune and the Côte de Nuits).
Here, at the Côte d'Or, the Pinot Noir is virtually the only represented red variety.
The name "Pinot" probably comes from the French word "pin" , that means pine or pine cones, and thus refers to the shape bunch of grapes.
The Pinot Noir blooms early and is therefore susceptible to late spring frosts.
It is one of the few red grape varieties in the world, which is mono-vinified.
The red wines, produced from the Pinot Noir grape, have a colour that varies from cherry to deep red.
Their body is round to meaty fat, with soft tannins. The aroma is dominated by red, sweet fruits.
The ageing of Pinot Noir wines is difficult to predict. High quality Burgundy wines, like ours, generally have a long life potential and develop extraordinarily complex flavours with maturity.