Bourgogne rouge, also known as red Burgundy, is the basic red wine of Burgundy. Usually made entirely of Pinot Noir, Bourgogne rouge can be a remarkable value, as it not only serves as an indicator of vintage quality, but it can also help consumers define the house style of the domaine.
Well, as we’ve mentioned here in The Wine Country newsletter for quite a while now, Burgundy has had a rough go of it as of late: hail, frost and mildew all taking sizeable bites out of multiple vintages in a row leaving family wineries scrambling to make the best of what Mother Nature left them.
We’ve seen prices increase, wineries and vineyard owners sell off what little they had left. We’ve seen allocations shrink or downright disappear, growers pack up and move on, all the while aching, still, for those hauntingly exotic and sometimes feral aromatics that can only come from that one place.
Is there amazing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay being made elsewhere? Oh, hell yes there are, and we are as proud as ever to stock them from California, Oregon, New Zealand and beyond. But do they, can they pry open that thing that scrape at the twisted insides of a crazy Burgundy lover?
Not for me and many of my like-minded Burgundy freaks. Are those wines from other regions just as good? Absolutely. The same or close enough? Yeah, not so much, and those of us with that full-grown Burgundy monkey on our wanting backs have been feeling it,. I assure you.
The good news is some of our wicked smart and industrious importer friends have been beating down the not-so-mean streets of Burgundy virtually begging on our behalf to supply us with more wine. Some traveling to less well known regions, others finding great deals and supply on wines to fill our growing demand. We’ve seen quite a few Burgundies showing up in our suppliers' tasting bags and here are some of our latest discoveries:
This organically grown Pinot Noir from vineyards near Marsannay is super vibrant and loaded with pretty black cherry fruit. There are hints of granite and smoke intertwined with the curvy fruit as well as some tangy notes of citrus rind. Light but hardly thin on the palate with just enough chew on the finish to make it super food friendly.
$22.99 per bottle
Looking for fresh, floral, red fruited, easy slurping, utterly classic red Burgundy? Here you go! Light weight, beautifully aromatic, nice complexity but easy to just love. Bravo to the Marchand-Tawse team for another deliciously classic wine. The team at Marchand-Tawse blends both tradition and innovation. A native of Quebec, Canada, Pascal Marchand expresses the terroir of his Burgundy vineyards like a native. He adds the progressive thinking of his New World roots with guts and hard work, alongside his Canadian partner Moray Tawse. This dynamic duo is at the forefront of modern winemaking, while embracing their unique interpretations of both organic and biodynamic practices.
$24.99 per bottle
Okay, this is a total Burgundian wine nerd wine. Epineuil is located just east of Chablis and the reds from this tiny appellation tend to remind us of the whites from its famous and revered neighbor. Flinty and full of fresh cracked black pepper with whispers of tart red fruit and dried herbs. This light bodied red begs for clean white meat dishes, grilled sturdy fishes and exuding sumptuous cheeses.
$23.99 per bottle
Here we find ourselves dipping onto ripe, rich and ready red fruits with sexy hits of smoke, meat and charred wood. Ample and full in the mouth with silky tannins on the finish. A wine for red meat, grilled steaky fishes and game.
$38.99 per bottle
Ripe, deep and loaded with sweet black cherries, vanilla and earthy, leathery notes. Medium weight on the palate, just chewy enough to show best with a quick decant or some time to open up in the glass. The texture is balanced with a nice amount of grip by way of tannin and higher acidity but the finish rounds out beautifully and you are left with pure, deep fruit.
$32.99 per bottle
2015 was a spectacular vintage all over France but the Pinot Noir from Burgundy, wow. A perfect, yet short, harvest gave the wines an added push of rounder and more forward fruit with softer acidy and tannin which makes them lovely for earlier drinking, and who doesn’t love that? This entry level from Rossignol-Ferrier is that sexy combination of luscious red fruit, spice and damp forest floor or mushroom. Light on the palate but with tons of energetic and lively fruit. The finish is quite snappy but softens with just a little nibble of ripe cheese, dark meat poultry, simple roast beef or meaty pink fleshed fish.
$28.99 per bottle