With a thousand-year-old history, the Burgundy vineyard today meets the expectations of the greatest wine lovers all over the world. How did this region manage to create this reputation and these numerous quality appellations? Burgundy tourism, itineraries, tips … This is what you find out in this article.
To learn more about the history of Burgundy wines, think about wine tourism ! An original way of travel in the region while tasting the best wines directly from our partner winegrowers .
The origins of wine in Burgundy
Following their conquest of Gaul in 52 BC. AD, the Romans imported their vines and established the first vineyards, before developing them for several centuries. The conquered Gauls invented the barrel, which then became the starting point of a flourishing business .
During the Middle Ages, the wine growers of the time discovered better terroirs and methods to make their vineyards prosper. During the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century, the ecclesiastics took over the culture of wine on their own. They then founded several abbeys like that of Cluny in 909.
Until the French Revolution, the Cistercian religious orders (region of Chablis) and Clunisians (region of Mâcon) mainly produced wine for mass, before experiencing a surplus of yield which enabled them to sell the wine on the Old Continent. The rigorous methods continue to be perfected at each stage of the development of the wines, and Burgundy becomes a great vineyard.
Two concepts to know: Climats and Clos
Invented by monks and bishops, the “ climates »Designate a delimited plot of vines whose characteristics of grape varieties, know-how, or even soils are specific to each. It exists 1,463 different climates in Burgundy . The “ closed ” are climates surrounded by walls , mainly used to protect the vines from wild animals.
After the Revolution, the Age of Enlightenment.
The creation of the glass bottle allows better conservation of the wine by developing more powerful aromas. Burgundy wines are making themselves known, whether for its grands crus with the dukes as well as for the modest population who accesses table wines Daily. In 1787 , the then American president Thomas Jefferson visits France and tastes Burgundy wines . It was the entry point to the United States.
At 19 th century, several scientific advances explaining winemaking improve the quality of wine. Doctor Jules Guyot promoted work in the vineyard and the organization of the vineyards in 1868. The first wine merchants bought wine wholesale from producers before aging it, and in 1875 all this flourishing business had to contend with phylloxera, an insect harmful to vines. In great danger, the Burgundy vineyard will use a technique called “grafting” in 1888 to overcome it.
During the 20th century , the importance of local wine brotherhoods and producers who decide to organize themselves into cooperatives to protect their vineyards will manage the means of production as well as possible and develop their identity. Today the majority of these techniques are transmitted to visitors from all over the world with the strong development of burgundy tourism.
Burgundy Tourism: the vineyard today
Today extended on 250 km from the north of Chablis to the south of Mâcon , the Burgundy vineyard is:
- 84 Designations of Controlled Origin;
- 3,800 estates and 250 trading houses;
- 29,500 hectares in total;
- Climates listed as World Heritage UNESCO ;
- A blend of Pinot Noir N (36%), Gamay N (11%), Chardonnay B (46%), Aligoté (6%) or Sauvignon, Pinot Blanc or Caesar N in very small quantities;
- Several wine routes, including the famous Route des Grands Crus.
To taste all these oenological riches, and learn more about one of the greatest stories of French wines, Winalist gives you access to a whole range of activities on the theme of wine and culture . Bourgogne tourisme are two words that go together as well as Pommard and meat. With its many activities (walks, meals, wine workshops, tours & tastings, etc.) is the ideal way to discover a region with the men and women who shape this terroir. Our winegrower partners are delighted to welcome you for a convivial moment, ranging from an hour to share a cuvée to a complete weekend with accommodation to discover a region. Book in a few clicks your wine tourism activity in Burgundy .
See you soon on the Burgundy wine route!