This idea struck last week when a co-worker and I were naming our favourite wines in the shop for a certain price point. Under $30, under $50, etc. As we contemplated the best rapport qualité prix, or best value for price wines in the shop, I started to realize how many of them I’ve personally stashed away.
There’s far too much going on in the world of Burgundy wines that leads the thoughts of a melancholic lover of those wines into deep, dark reflection. After 30 years in the wine trade, I tread the earthy pathways threaded through this region of storied vineyards with as much of a thrill as ever, but with a nagging sense of alienation that was not there before. Mud and memories cling fast to my boots, but I must admit that other musings now crowd this delicately beautiful landscape.
If we can concede that “generational” changes in the wine industry occur every decade or so, I am very concerned that forthcoming generations of wine professionals, perhaps starting now with people in their early to mid-twenties, are going to hold the same opinions of Burgundy as I do about Bordeaux.
No other estate in Burgundy, or perhaps the world, has achieved such an enviable reputation in such a short amount of time. Admittedly the seeds were planted two centuries ago and at a certain point in history, the Liger-Belairs owned a dizzying collection of vineyards that included the monopolies of La Romanée, La Tâche and La Grande Rue as well as considerable parcels in Clos de Vougeot, Chambertin, Saint-Georges, Malconsorts, Reignots and Vaucrains.