At the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival Burgundy Masterclass in March the Burghound’s Allen Meadows talked about the revolution that has taken place in Burgundian viticulture and winemaking practices over the past 30 years.
You may well ask why one of the most renowned and historic wine districts in the world would need to radically shake up the way it did business? But in many respects Burgundy’s transformation was about rediscovering how it had originally forged its reputation as the best producer of chardonnay and pinot noir in the world.
In the 1980s and 90s an increasing number of family-owned growers decided to take control of their own destiny by making and bottling their own wines rather than selling the grapes to négociants. In the process they discovered that they could make vast improvements to the quality of their grapes by reviving traditional practices of nurturing the land. Artificial fertilisers and pesticides were replaced with organic and even biodynamic viticultural practices and, once again, the vines were meticulously hand-tended and hand-harvested.
The result of all this hard work both in the vineyard and the winery, where traditional practices like natural yeast fermentation have been complemented by state-of-the art modern winemaking equipment, are beautifully made, clean wines that truly express the nuances of Burgundy’s unique and fabled terroir.
Fortunately for Australians, over the past several years a group of winemakers and business people from the Hunter Valley have cultivated relationships with some of very best of these small grower-owned domaines. On Tuesday evening 20 November 2012, importer Denis Power from Domaine Burgundy will share his insights into Burgundy over dinner at Restaurant Atelier in Glebe. Top Burgundies from his portfolio will be expertly matched to fine French food.
According to wine consultant Mario Vinciguerra, who will also be on hand to guide us through the wines, one of the evening’s highlights will be the acclaimed Billaud-Simon Les Preuses Grand Cru 2009 (rrp $119.50). The grapes for this 100% stainless steel fermented Chablis hail from 80 year old vines in a tiny vineyard (only .4 of a hectare)… [Read More]