By Bob Lipinski
There has been much praise directed at the 2016 vintage in Burgundy, France, from many well-known and respected writers and critics. The vintage was definitely quality over quantity due to lower yields in the vineyards because of frost.
One thing that stood out was the abundance of spicy berries and fruit in both the whites and especially the reds. The wines are fresh, fruity and well balanced with good (not high) levels of acidity and less oak aging. The red wines have abundant flavors of raspberry, strawberry, cherry, spices, citrus and stone fruits. White wines are aromatic, clean, crisp and loaded with peach, pears, hints of oak, butter and citrus.
Although both the reds and whites can be cellared for several years, they are delicious right now. Of the many wines I sampled there were quite a few that really stood out and are worth finding. There were too many fine wines to comment on each.
•J.J. Vincent NV Crémant de Bourgogne (100 percent chardonnay)
•J.J. Vincent Bourgogne Blanc
•J.J. Vincent Pouilly-Fuissé Marie-Antoinette
•Jacques Prieur Meursault Clos de Mazeray
•Domaine Dominique Gallois Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru, Petits Cazetiers
•Domaine Dominique Gallois Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru, La Combe aux Moines
•Domaine Dominique Gallois Charmes-Chambertin Grand Cru
•Domaine Jacques-Frederic Mugnier Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru, Clos de la Maréchale
•Domaine Lignier-Michelot Bourgogne Red (pinot noir)
•Domaine Lignier-Michelot Chambolle-Musigny Vieilles Vignes
•Domaine Lignier-Michelot Morey-Saint-Denis en la Rue de Vergy
•Domaine Lignier-Michelot Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Les Faconnières
•Domaine Lignier-Michelot Clos de la Roche Grand Cru
•Jean-Luc & Eric Burguet Gevrey-Chambertin Symphonie
•Jean-Luc & Eric Burguet Gevrey-Chambertin Mes Favorites Vieilles Vignes
•Domaine Sylvain Cathiard Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru Aux Thorey
•Domaine Sylvain Cathiard Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru Aux Murgers
•Jacques Prieur Corton-Bressandes Grand Cru
•Jacques Prieur Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru
•Armand Rousseau Gevrey-Chambertin Clos du Château
•Armand Rousseau Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Lavaux St-Jacques
•Armand Rousseau Ruchottes-Chambertin Clos des Ruchottes Grand Cru
•Armand Rousseau Chambertin Clos de Bèze Grand Cru
•Domaine Parent Corton Les Renardes Grand Cru
Although many people love eating cheese while drinking wine, it’s a rarity to find any cheese at serious wine tastings or judgings. The alkalinity of the cheese neutralizes the acidity of the wine, obscuring its sensory characteristics. Several of my favorite French cheeses from Burgundy may be a little difficult to find, but the search is worth it.
Charolais: A soft texture, cylindrical or flat drum-shaped (with concave sides) goat’s (or goat and cow’s) milk cheese made in Charolles, Burgundy. It is generally eaten fresh; however, it does age well.
Lormes: A semisoft cheese with a bluish-gray exterior and a delicate and pleasant taste, which is made in Burgundy. It is made into truncated cones when made from goat’s milk and flat disks when made from cow’s milk.
Soumaintrain: A semisoft, wheel-shaped, cow’s milk cheese made in Burgundy. Soumaintrain has a shiny-orange exterior, a yellow interior and is quite pungent smelling with a creamy taste.
Bob Lipinski, a local author, has written 10 books, including “101: Everything You Need to Know About Gin, Vodka, Rum & Tequila” and “Italian Wine & Cheese Made Simple” (available on Amazon.com). He conducts training seminars on wine, spirits and food and is available for speaking engagements. He can be reached at www.boblipinski.com OR [email protected].