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Burgundy - Wine Tour of Burgundy

DK PublishingDK Publishing 2/07/2014 DKBooks
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Puligny Montrachet

© Provided by DKBooks

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Vineyards in the Côte de Beaune

Photo: Vineyards in the Côte de Beaune © Provided by DKBooks Vineyards in the Côte de Beaune

© Provided by DKBooks

© Provided by DKBooks

Wine Tour of Burgundy

Burgundy is a region that effortlessly combines scenic beauty with a host of other attractions, from wine and gastronomy to magnificent medieval architecture. The prettiest part of the area lies in the south, among the rolling hills of Côte Chalonnaise and Mâconnais, but small villages such as St-Aubin and Chambolle-Musigny, which lie tucked among their vineyards on the Côte D’Or, also exude charm.

1 Dijon

Dijon was the ancient capital of the powerful dukes of Burgundy, who took a strong interest in the region’s wine. In 1385 they forbade the planting of the Gamay grape in Burgundy’s vineyards because they considered it inferior. Their former palace, which is now crammed with the fine collections of the Beaux-Arts Museum, is open to visitors.

2 Route des Grands Crus

This narrow road follows the mid-slope from Gevrey-Chambertin southward to Morey-St-Denis, passing through the most famous grands crus of northern Burgundy, including Le Chambertin.

3 Château du Clos de Vougeot

telephone number: 03 80 62 86 09

Visit the medieval Château du Clos de Vougeot, where Burgundian growers traditionally hold their ceremonies and banquets.

4 Citeaux

telephone number: 03 80 61 32 58

The famous Abbaye de Citeaux is where the Cistercian order of monks was founded in 1098. In medieval times the monks controlled most of Burgundy’s finest vineyards. Only vestiges of the medieval abbey remain, but the interior can be visited.

5 Beaune

Beaune is an enchanting walled town, crammed with churches, wine shops, restaurants, and tranquil squares. The unmissable sight is the Hôtel-Dieu, which is recognizable by the colorful toile roof. Also worth a visit are some of the local wine merchants, such as Patriarche.

6 Le Montrachet

From Beaune, take the Chagny road, which passes alongside Puligny-Montrachet. Behind the village lies the world’s most famous white wine vineyard, Le Montrachet, identifiable from stone plaques on its gateposts.

7 Tournus

The main reason to visit this pretty little town is to tour the remarkable Romanesque abbey. Tournus is also a famous gastronomic center, and an excellent base for visiting the villages and vineyards of Mâconnais.

8 Hameau en Beaujolais

telephone number: 03 85 35 22 22

Located on the edge of Beaujolais in the village of Romanèche-Thorins is the HQ of famous wine producer Duboeuf. He has created a splendid wine museum here, with well-presented exhibits relating to the history of wine and its production process, plus the opportunity to purchase the entire range of Duboeuf wines.

The Hospices de Beaune

Founded in 1443, Beaune’s magnificent Hôtel-Dieu is home to the Hospices de Beaune. The hospice’s charitable activities are financed by the proceeds from the 58 ha of vineyards with which it has been endowed over the centuries. Every year new wines are made by the hospice winemaker and auctioned off at a charity auction in November. The auction is attended by wine lovers from around the world and many of the wines are bought by négociants. After the sale, the new oak barrels are transferred to cellars, where the wine is aged until it is ready for resale. The auction prices are closely monitored as a guide to market trends for the new vintage, but as a charitable event, high prices are encouraged, and in truth, the auction is a combination of fundraising, promotion for merchants, and feasting.

Visitors’ tips


This 93-mi tour begins in the north at Dijon and ends in Mâconnais. A major highway runs parallel to the Route Nationale, so it is easy to adjust the itinerary.


A full day is needed, or the tour can be taken at a more leisurely pace by including an overnight stay.


In Beaune and Nuits-St-Georges, many négociant houses welcome visitors, but private wine estates are rarely open without an appointment.


36 Place d’Armes, Chagny-en-Bourgogne 03 85 87 65 65

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