Last year as part of the EU food and wine programme – we took several high profile journalists on trips to the wine region of Burgundy, with some of the most renowned wine writers in the UK from Tim Atkins to Fiona Beckett.
Wine tasting in Macon
Burgundy may well be one of the most well known wine regions in the World, but the (BIVB) Wine board’s aim was to embrace people’s knowledge and to also educate people further on appreciating the terroir of Burgundy and appreciating the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes.
Grand Cru Vineyards
In Burgundy, the Appellation d’Origine controlee (AOC – quality label) is rooted in the terroir. The notion of the terroir is very wide and includes key factors such as: the soil, the direction the plot faces, its altitude, the climatic conditions and so on. As well as the human factors – cultivation methods, pruning through to harvesting, cellars during vinifying and the ageing processes.
The Burgundy wine-growing area is made up of an enormous patchwork of thousands of frequently small-sized plots (divided by inheritance). The 100 Burgundy appellations are divided into 4 levels – Regional appellation- (wines produced over the whole of the Burgundy region), Village appellation – (wines produced on land around wine-growing villages & bearing their name), Premier Cru appellation -(wines produced on higher altitude plots of land called ‘Climates’ within a village) and Grand Cru appellation – (wines produced on the best plots on village land).
They are also divided into 5 wine growing areas: Chablis-Grand Auxerrois, Cote de Nuits, Cote de Beaune, Cote Chalonnaise and Maconnais.