It’s now two days until departure. Beaune, France. Burgundy. Home of some of the best wines in the world, both red and white. Are we ready to go? Well, yes, I think so. Wine travel, like any other kind of travel, is better if you plan well.
First, and foremost, you need to arrange for wine tastings, winery visits, food, and the like. And, in most cases, one cannot simply visit wineries (for tasting and tour) just by turning up on their door. A winemaker once told me “wineries are businesses, not charities. Winemakers are winemakers, not tour guides.” However, when they passionately go on and on about their (or other’s) vineyards and wines, they seem a little bit of both. Anyways, be sure to start inquiring early. A couple of months ahead of your planned travel. Have the wineries suggest timings that best suits them. Ask your favorite wine dealer, if he or she can help you out. And, for those who know wine importers, wine critics, and the like, ask them if they can help you set up visits. Send a thank you note upon confirmation, and again a couple of days before you actually go (a reminder has never hurt anybody)
In Burgundy you’ll find mostly small family enterprises, but there are also a few more “industrial” estates. This time around we’ll visit the following: Louis Carillon, Paul Pillot, Michel Bouzereau, Drouhin-Laroze, Jean Claude Bachelet, Jean Michel Chartron. Thus, a mix of the area, with visits in Mersault, Puligny Montrachet, Chassagne Montrachet, St. Aubin and Gevrey Chambertin. Dinners and lunches are also all booked.