Category Archives for "Burgundy"

Mar 10

Gilbert Picq 2010 Chablis

By Louise | 2010 , Burgundy , Chablis , Chardonnay , France , White Wine , Wines I'm Neutral About

photo(35)This is a very typical Chablis.  It has hints of green apples, minerals, and citrus fruits in the nose and has a very crisp, rather acidic taste, and a medium to long finish.

I wanted to point out one key fact about Chablis.  Chablis is NOT a type of grape!  Chablis is actually a region in Burgundy, France.  The grapes produced from that region are mostly of the chardonnay grape varietal.  That’s why this wine tastes a bit like a Chardonnay.  However, unlike many Chardonnays, most Chablis tend not to have oaky tastes (i.e., they are not produced in oak barrels).  They also don’t have that vanilla, buttery taste and smell that’s sometimes associated with Chardonnays.

Chablis are noted for their acidity and crispness.  If you want to know what a typical Chablis tastes like, then this one is a great example for not that much!  I picked it up from Astor Wines for $20.

Dec 22

Catherine et Claude Maréchal Savigny-Lès-Beaune Vieilles Vignes 2007 from Burgundy, France

By Louise | 2007 , Burgundy , France , Red Wine , Vieilles Vignes , Wines I'm Neutral About

I’m almost shocked at how many red wines I’ve consumed since I started this blog a month and a half ago. I had initially thought this blog would be dominated by sweet white wines, but I am happily surprised by my willingness to experience wines outside of my normal riesling/dessert wine range. I bought this wine at Astor Wine and Spirits and took it to a BYOB (Bring Your Own Bottle) French restaurant called La Sirene in the Village (NYC). I’ve recently started liking BYOB restaurants because it’s nice to have a good bottle of wine with dinner without breaking the bank! And what better bottle to take to a very traditional French restaurant than a French red.

The wine didn’t have a particularly strong smell, although I detected dark cherry and oak in it. The taste was a bit disappointing – it was quite bitter and had a higher tannin level than I would have liked. However, the wine did improve with food. I got the beets salad with pistachio, apple, and brie for my appetizer, and the wine paired decently well with that because the beets were fairly sweet. The wine also paired well with the goat cheese tart appetizer because that again was slightly sweet in flavor. I think the sweetness of the food calmed the bitter taste in the wine thereby enhancing the flavors of both the food and the wine. Unfortunately, the wine didn’t go too well with my main course, the baked seafood shepherd pie, but I could have guessed that. The conclusion: probably not a wine I’d drink again.

Where can you buy it? Although I had bought it at Astor for $29.96 only a few weeks ago, it does not appear to be on their website anymore, so I fear it may have sold out. However, it is sold at a few other places, e.g., Sussex Wines & Spirits (but for $44.99).

Nov 28

Domaine Parent Pinot Noir 2005 from Burgundy, France

By Louise | 2005 , Burgundy , France , Pinot Noir , Red Wine , Wines I'm Neutral About

Initially, a dark and intense cherry smell greeted my nose. This was followed by the mouthwatering smell of blackberries mixed with a tinge of oak. It was definitely a burst of fruitiness. Upon tasting the wine, the oak taste became very prominent, and I could detect a slightly smoky quality to the oak. At the end, just before I swallowed, I felt a spicy kick emerge to finish the wine off. The aftertaste was slightly bitter and slight sour. Not a bad wine, although perhaps not my wine of choice.

This wine has quite a bit of history to it. The wine producer, Domaine Parent, dates back to the mid 17th century and boasts Thomas Jefferson as one of its earliest customers. It’s a wine from Burgundy (known as Bourgogne in French, which is what you see written on the bottle label), which is where Pinot Noir grapes are traditional grown. Indeed, Burgundy is thoroughly famous for its Pinot Noirs. The Pinot Noir grapes that are used to make this wine comes from 30-year old vines, which are grown in clay/limestone soils. The grapes are harvested by hand, and after fermentation, they are matured for 12 months in oak barrels. I’ve read suggestions that this bottle can be aged for 3-5 years. Some Pinot Noirs only reach their peak after aging for 15-20 years.

You can purchase this wine at PJ Wine in New York for $14.99 a bottle for the 2007 vintage. I saw the 2005 vintage sold online for $27.95 a bottle. I’m not sure what difference there is between these 2 vintages so I can’t tell you why the prices vary.

Nov 14

Clotilde Davenne Sauvignon 2008 from Saint-Bris, Burgundy

By Louise | 2008 , Burgundy , France , Sauvignon Blanc , White Wine , Wines I Like

What can I say…it’s acidic. Not my normal cup of tea (which is reislings), but quite interesting. The smell…well, to me it smells like dry white wine. Maybe if sniff hard enough I can detect a vague grapefruity smell, but then it could also be my imagination. I can’t really detect anything fruity in it. Other websites have described this wine as having a “mineral nose,” but having never fully understood the term minerality, I can’t really comment. Maybe minerality is just what I smell in the majority of dry white wines, in which case, this wine is most definitely full of mineral notes.

Onto the actual taste…again the acidity hits you immediately but filled with citrus flavor rather than just pure vinegar.Likewise, there’s a tangy aftertaste that you would associate with citrus fruits. I usually really dislike acidic wines, but the citrus aspect makes this wine far more enjoyable even beyond the first glass.

This wine comes from the French region of Saint-Bris (Saint-Bris-le-Vineux), a small town in Burgundy. Burgundy is traditionally known for Pinot noir so it’s unusual to find a Sauvignon from there. The wine maker is Clotilde Davenne, and she’s been making wine in that region of France for the past 17 years (according to her website).

Where can I buy it I hear you shout…well, I got this bottle at Astor Wines and Spirits in NYC for $15.99. There you go, you now know everything I know.