Finding affordable Burgundy wine

The Burgundy wine market is a bit of a minefield. You have small allocations of very high priced wines from the precious Grand Crus, and beneath that you have a derth of lower priced and often uninspired quality wines from the villages. Where is the balance you ask?

Well, with the holiday season here, we found ourselves paying a lot of money for all sorts of things – a new 4k flat screen tv (highly recommended – the HDR resolution on Netflix is UNREAL!)from Vizio, a replacement hot tub cover for $300, increased heating bills, and so on. This is a common thread during the holiday season. Naturally you want to supplement special dinners from Thanksgiving to Christmas with great wines. So where do you find a killer bottle of Burg?

Photo credit
Finding a great quality to price ratio isn’t easy in the most prestigious French wine regions Photo credit

Avoid the Grand Crus

This probably goes without saying, but Burgundy and “affordable” are rarely seen in the same context, but if you know where to look you can find some great values. While Bordeaux and exclusive Napa Cabs seem to be stuck in a holding pattern of prices, Burgundy continues to soar upward every year. To start, you probably want to avoid any wines labeled with the generic, all-encompassing “Bourgogne” designation, which is meant for the lowest rung. Instead, try to find something with a specific region – Cote d’Or or Challonais on the bottle. This great article in the Wall St. Journal explores the subject in more depth. Then you should look for any bottle with a specific village designation – i.e.

Five picks:

  • 2013 Domain Dureuil-Janthial Vauvry Rully Premier Cru ($36)
  • 2014 Patrick Piuze Terroir de Chablis ($22)
  • Domaine Claudie Jobard, Montagne La Folie, Rully 2014
  • Domaine Jean-Philippe Fichet, Vieilles Vignes, Bourgogne 2014
  • Domaine Lebreuil, Aux Grands Liards, Savigny-lès-Beaune 2014