France: Burgundy

Côte de Beaune

Wines from the southern part of the Côte d'Or
By Russell Hone and Jean-Pierre Renard

This Guide was last updated on 27 April 2011
To explore this Wine Travel Guide, select from the menu on the left

Main grape varieties


Pinot Noir
The main grape variety for Burgundy reds with much clonal variation, it has thin skins, making it prone to disease and thus is difficult to grow. It also requires a lot of skilled winemaking with careful oak handling. However, when it is very good one can understand why winemakers in other regions of the world try to emulate it. Aromas range from red fruits (raspberries, redcurrants etc) to more gamey or fungal tones. It is relatively high in acid, and being thin-skinned, gives reds with a relatively light colour and tannin.

The grape variety of Beaujolais, grown in a small way in the Côte de Beaune where it can be used blended with Pinot Noir in Bourgogne Passe-Tout-Grains.


The principal and virtually only white grape variety allowed within Burgundy. A hardy vine, Chardonnay thrives well in Burgundy and marries well with oak, so many winemakers ferment and age the wine in barriques. Flavours vary widely depending on terroir and on winemaking methods, but it always gives wines of good structure that may be ageworthy.

A high acid variety that, in good years, can produce a ripe fruity wine. It accounts for about 6% of total plantings in Burgundy.

This information is provided free of charge, however it is strictly the copyright of Wine Travel Guides and its contributors. We try to do our best in keeping our guides and information up-to-date and accurate, but if you notice any mistakes, please contact us. Note that we take no responsibility for any inaccuracies. Thanks for your respect and understanding. For full details see our Terms and Conditions.