white burgundy

Burgundy (White)

We have a friend in the wine trade who will tell you in all seriousness that the world's greatest white wines are made from Riesling in the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, and whilst the wines from here are often extraordinary, there can surely be few who would argue that they outclass the great Chardonnays of the Côte de Beaune. The monks of the great medieval monasteries of Cîteaux and Cluny knew a thing or two and it is no accident that, for reds and whites, the finest vineyard sites were in monastic hands until the monasteries were despoiled by the revolutionaries. Some of the Mosel's best sites were also owned by monasteries, but nowhere can this have been so comprehensive as in Burgundy, where the 11th and 12th century monastic movement was so extraordinarily successful.

Today, white wine production is focused mainly on the three famous villages of Meursault, Puligny Montrachet and Chassagne Montrachet, with the Grands Crus, apart from the more northerly Corton Charlemagne (and one (Musigny) in the Côte de Nuits), divided between the communes of Puligny and Chassagne. As so often in Burgundy, the most sought after lends its name to the village - hence the profusion of 'double barrelled' village names. However, most producers in the Côte de Beaune make red and white wines - and many villages (Savigny Les Beaune and Pernand Vergelesses for example), while better known for their red wine production, also make very fine whites, which cannot command the prices of their more famous neighbours. The same is true in reverse - reds from Chassagne can be stunning - as produced by Fontaine Gagnard and Gagnard Delagrange.

Domaine Simon Bize

On Monday 21st October 2013 we received the tragic news that Patrick had died the afternoon before.  We had been due to see him two days later.  Much has since been written about Patrick and the esteem and affection in which he was held, having run this 22 hectare domaine with such self-effacing flair for so long.  With his keen humour, great personal warmth, and winemaking brilliance, Patrick will be much missed, and we extend our sympathies to his widow Chisa and their children, and the rest of his family.  Patrick’s memory will live on through the bottles which lie in cellars around the world, and through these 2013s – picked just weeks before he died.

At 22 hectares, this is a large estate by Burgundian standards.  It is now run by Patrick\'s widow Chisa with the brilliant assistance of Guillaume Bott, who trained at Sauzet.  The domaine\'s origins go back to the 1880s when Simon Bize (Patrick\'s great-grandfather) bought the first vines.  He was succeeded in 1918 by his son, also Simon, who was able to buy more vineyards in the years after the Great War.  His son, Simon III, who took over the domaine in 1950, began domaine bottling, establishing the reputation of the estate as one of the finest sources of Savigny Les Beaune.  His son, Patrick, built the present winery in 1972 and also added to the vineyard holdings, considerably enhancing this great domaine.

Patrick Bize


2018 Bourgogne Blanc Les Champlains, Domaine Simon Bize
 12 Bottles

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