Gevrey-Chambertin is a lovely village at the top of the Cote d’Or

December 11, 2010

About Wines from Gevrey-Chambertin, Burgundy of France
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I definitely wouldn’t mind moving here. Gevrey-Chambertin is a lovely village at the top of the Cote d’Or. Around 3300 (1999) people live here. Well over a hundred are winegrowers, which means that a large number of people are involved in the wine business in one way or the other. Walking along the streets reading the names on the mailboxes is very much like reading a serious wine list at a restaurant. Esmonin, Roty, Gallois, Dugat, Trapet, Heresztyn etc – the choice is yours.
Gevrey-Chambertin offers a handful of restaurants, a few hotels and a number of chambre d’hôtes. We have stayed both at the chambre d’hôtes of Domaine Marchand Freres (1, Place du Monument) and Mme Follot (33, rue de la Croix des Champs), and I can say that both are highly recommended.
Apart from the now defunct Les Millesimes my personal favourite among the restaurants is Chez Guy by the mairie in the village centre. Some years ago the style here was changed towards a more modern one, but the charm and cooking remain intact. Dining outside in the summertime is simply wonderful in this tranquil setting. This is also the only place I have managed to find Alain Burguet’s lovely wines.
Across the street Domaine Dominique Gallois has a small shop set up for tasting and buying wine. There is also a pizza restaurant, a wine bar and a tabac further down the street.
Another block down rue Richebourg there is a real estate agent (might become useful considering what I said earlier about this village) and the houses of Domaine Heresztyn. It is open five days a week for tasting. Walk past the gates into the courtyard and there is a tasting cellar to the left. My first experience with Domaine Heresztyn was having a bottle of 1997 Morey-Saint-Denis, Les Millandes, at the nearby Chez Guy. Since then I have bought it every year at the domaine, together with a selection of their other wines.
In Saint-Philibert:
Domaine Jérôme Galeyrand
The RN74 cuts right through the eastern part of the village. Down here there are a few more shops and vignerons on both sides of the road. Domaine Trapet is one the more well-known names in this part of the village. Recently Pierre Bourée has opened a restarant here for wine tasting. The concept is similar to that of Olivier Leflaive in Puligny-Montrachet and the restaurant is open for lunch all week except Sunday.
Gevrey-Chambertin is one of two villages along the Cote d’Or with a large amount of village AC vines on the “wrong” side of the RN74, the other one being Chorey-lès-Beaune. Morey-Saint-Denis and Nuits-St-Georges have tiny holdings east of the Beaune–Dijon road.
Of Cotes-de-Nuits’ 24 grand crus nine belong to Gevrey-Chambertin. There are 26 premier crus. The grand crus all lie south of the village, along the road to Morey-Saint-Denis, while the premier crus can be found both south and west of the village. The village AC vines can be found on all sides as well as right in the middle of the village. There are also 50 ha in the neighbouring Brochon that are entitled to the Gevrey-Chambertin AC. All wine in Gevrey-Chambertin is red.
The history of the village goes way back, back to AD 640 when it was called Gabriacus. At this time it was owned by the Abbots of Bèze. The monks cleared the ground and planted the first vines here. Legend also has it that a peasant by the name Bertin also decided to plant vines, hence the name Chambertin – champ Bertin. But it was not until 1847 that Gevrey-Chambertin became Gevrey-Chambertin, when Gevrey was allowed to add the name of its famous vineyard to its name. This started a trend that was followed by most of the villages on the Côte d’Or.
Since a few years there is also an Australien connection with Gevrey-Chambertin. As if one harvest a year wouldn’t be enough vigneron Pierre Naigeon is making wine in Australia as well. Under the label of Clos Pierre he not only makes wine from the Burgundian varieties – pinot noir and chardonnay – but also from sauvignon blanc, syrah and cabernet sauvignon.
– I have been doing it since 2004, so it is my fourth vinification on the other side of the world, Pierre Naigeon explains. During the harvest in Australia I spend almost two and a half months to vinificate in the different areas. And a month more split around the year for the bottling and promotion. My Clos Pierre range is mostly sold in Australia. A few drops are going to the United States, Japan and Denmark.


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