Monday, May 11, 2009

Burgundy - booked!

Ok, Burgundy is booked. We really had a hard time deciding where to stay in Burgundy – we really want to experience a lot of the region’s wines, but as with the rest of our trip, proximity to a main road is important along with relatively easy access to bus or train station (ie not a 25km taxi ride). We also wanted to stay somewhere that we could conceivably walk to at least one or two other vineyards. I sent out a ton of emails and didn’t get a ton of responses, either because they were booked, don’t read English, don’t like Americans or combination of those.

In the end, we chose Maison Jean-Philippe Marchand in Gevrey Chambertin. Gevrey-Chambertin is between Dijon and Beaune and has 9 grands crus and 26 premiers crus. The village only produces red wines, which is fine, we’ll certainly pick up some whites here and there. It’s a little village so it looks like there’s much great wine to be had within a decent walk. (note to self- we’re planning a lot of walking …. must start walking a lot daily to get into the groove) It also appears there is a bus station about ½ mile away, which can take us down to Beaune as well as way south, to Macon for the day. Here’s a link to directions from Gevrey Chambertin to Macon to give you an overall view of where it is.

It appears Burgundy has a decent bus system, however, as with most sites, there isn’t as much info in English as in French but I feel relatively good that we’ll have at least some options to get around the region using public transportation – we might be limited on where we can based on where the bus drops us off at, but we’ll deal. (I have run across enough reminders looking at Chateau, Domaine, and tourism websites reminding me that drinking and driving don’t mix to decide we for sure aren’t renting a car)

We contemplated staying 2 of our 4 nights in one place and 2 in another place, but at the price of 55 Euros per night….its hard to justify staying somewhere else at 95 Euros per night. However, should you be visiting, here’s a couple other places I considered:
Chateau Andre Ziltener (ok, I considered it until I found out the price – 220 Euros per night, but looks very lovely)
Bergerie de Fuisse – 90 Euros per night and it wasn’t a vineyard, but the rooms do notably look nicer than the one we chose. It was way south, however.
Hotel de Vougeut – Probably the biggest contender in the Clos de Vougeut area. Its part of Domaine Bertanga and is a separate house turned into a hotel. Price was the biggest factor, while reasonable at 98 Euros per night – it just came down to saving 45 Euros per night. Ultimately, not matter where we stayed, we’d have to get transportation to other areas, so we thought we’d rather have the money to buy more wine.

Whew. Now I can start picking what wines we’ll have.

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