Chassagne Montrachet, that other half of the famous duet, is a small village tucked slightly off the main road to Chagny and Chalon. Like its sister, Puligny, Chassagne has a glittering array of superb white wines but it also has a good selection of high quality reds. Les Caillerets and Morgeot are two of the best known 1er Cru white wines and their quite different flavour and structure is down to a small but important geological feature. As you drive up the tiny single track lane that separates the two Appellations, you see that Morgeot is about six feet lower than Caillerets,
which was casued some millions of Jaeger-LeCoultre Replica Watches
years ago by an earthquake. This has meant the vineyards of Caillerets have only about a foot of soil, making their wines leaner and more minerally as the vine root systems are forced to drive deep into the rock fissures for nourishment, while in Morgeot a much greater depth of soil has developed,meaning that the wines here are richer and rounder because they have an easier life.
Monsieur Rene Lamy’s Domaine is located on the road to Santenay and his family have been winegrowers here since the middle of the 17th Century. They own 19 hectares of vines, with a wide selection of Chassange, both whites and reds as well as some most agreeable St Aubin. The family lives on the outskirts of the village, completely surrounded by vineyards, most of which contain parcels of their own vines. Here we are able to see further examples of how small changes in the growing conditions of the vines can have a big impact on the final outcome. The "Champs de Morgeot" is separated from the 1er Cru Morgeot by the small country lane known as the D113, while a little further away, where the soil conditions are less suited to white wines, the substantial Morgeot Appellation changes from Chardonnay to Pinot Noir. Right alongside M. Lamy’s house he has a parcel of the 1er Cru Boudriotte which is a small 1er Cru completely within the Morgeot Appellation and this is separated by the tiniest of tracks which, if this was Cyprus (which it is not) the Tourist Board would describe as a "minor road useful for goats". Happily for everyone there are few, if any, goats in Chassagne as they would make short work of any green foliage on the vines. Anyway, the point is that it is tremendous fun trying the Morgeot and Boudriotte side by side, as this tiny track makes a surprisingly big difference to the taste and individual personality of these two wines.
All of the Domaine’s wines are built for medium term maturing. Their whites are lovely while young but really need a few years of bottle age to show at their best. The Pot Bois has particularly caught my attention on each occasion I have drunk it. It has a good "rapport qualite/prix". The red wines have considerable structure and even at the "village" Appellation level they are difficult drinking in their youth and really must be allowed 3 to 5 years to soften out. For those who are patient, however, these are lovely wines.
As well as their Chassagnes, they also have vines in St Aubin and the 1er Cru Castets red is excellent. They also have a tiny quantity of Grand Cru Montrachet which I have to admit we have not tried. This is hardly surprising given that the total production is so small, but if it is the big brother to the other wines it is likely to be truly splendid.
The village of Chassagne Montrachet has another very important attraction, Le Chassagne (see link below), a Michelin one star restaurant that was founded by several of the vignerons who Replica Breitling Navitimer
felt they needed a showcase for their own wines, accompanied by good food. As a consequence the wine list is quite superb and as for the food, well, we have now been here several times and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. It proves the age old point that good wine is intended to go with good food. It is however usually quite busy so it would be best to book.