France: Burgundy

Côte Chalonnaise

The wines of Bouzeron, Rully, Mercurey, Givry and Montagny
By Jean-Pierre Renard and Wink Lorch

This Guide was last updated on 10 August 2010
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Main towns and villages


A sizeable town on the Saône river, Chalon is the capital of the southern Burgundy region. Stroll around the delightful old quarter and lively Place St-Vincent dominated by the cathedral oramble along the river, stopping along the Rue de Strasbourg to eat at one of the many restaurants along this street. From the many choices, try Le Bistrot (see 'Places to Eat') or L'Air du Temps (tel: 03 85 93 39 01). Other things to do here include a visit to the photography museum (free entry - see celebrating the birthplace of Niepce, the father of French photography, or a boat trip on the gentle river Saône. The town is also home to the very educational Maison du Vin for the Côte Chalonnaise, and if you decide to make your base here, the vineyards are easily reached in 20-30 minutes by car.


Situated halfway between between Beaune and Chalon-sur-Saône, the little fortified town of Chagny has a fine 13th century church with a Romanesque belltower much admired by Victor Hugo. Another site not to miss is the pharmacy in the hospital: founded in 1715 it possesses a magnificent collection of ceramic pots dating from the 18th century. One can’t mention Chagny without talking about Lameloise, the famous Michelin three star restaurant (see 'Places to Eat'), that is also a comfortable hotel and has recently opened a more-reasonably priced bistrot.

Verdun sur le Doubs

A little town on the banks of the river Doubs some 20km northeast of Chalon-sur-Saône, Verdun is a paradise for fishermen and lovers of riverside walks. One of the local specialities is the famous pôchouse (or Pauchouse), a freshwater fish stew prepared with garlic and white wine. Try it at the Hostellerie Bourguignonne (see 'Places to Eat'). If you visit this town, you are halfway to the Ecomusée de la Bresse (see 'Other Interesting Attractions').

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