The wines of Burgundy are among the most famous and sought-after in the world, yet many are out of reach for those looking for quality wines at affordable prices. But if you’re willing to venture off the beaten path, there are reasonably priced bottles to be found.
In Burgundy, one possibility is in the extreme north of the region, where very good Pinot Noir is being grown just a stone’s throw from Chablis, the storied appellation known for its mineral-driven Chardonnays.
Some of these lesser-known Pinots come from vineyards around the tiny town of Chitry, and Marcel Giraudon’s 2018 Bourgogne Chitry is a leading example at about $25 to $30.
The grapes are grown on hillsides composed of the same limestone-based sedimentary rock found in much of Chablis. This gives the wines their distinctive mineral quality, which is certainly present in Giraudon’s Bourgogne Chitry Pinot Noir.
This earthiness combines with delicious red-berry fruit, especially cranberry and red cherry; hints of baking spices, and lively acidity to produce a bright and refreshing wine that benefits from a slight chill. You’ll find it great for summer drinking and beyond with a range of foods. Alcohol is just 12.5 percent, which translates to a lean elegance and reflects the area’s cool climate.
Like most of the wine from neighboring Chablis, Giraudon’s Pinot Noir is aged without oak, an element that frankly isn’t missed. The wine has plenty going on without it.
This is Burgundy beyond the stars of the region — a charming, authentic wine from an obscure corner that really tastes like it came from somewhere unique.
In wine, that’s exactly what I’m looking for.