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Chambolle-Musigny


Wine By Region Right Europe Right France Right Burgundy Right Côte de Nuits Right Chambolle-Musigny Right Musigny


The picture-perfect little town of Chambolle-Musigny, formerly known as Chambolle before it added the name of its Grand Cru, derives 376.2 acres of village and Premier Cru vineyards from its 2.92 square miles of area space, also having room for the Musigny Grand Cru and the majority share of the Bonnes-Mares Grand Cru vineyard as well. Considering the quality of these Grands Crus, it's not surprising that Chambolle's own land is some of the best not designated as Grand Cru in the world.

One of the Premiers Crus, Les Amoureuses, is really capable of commonly making wine on the level of Musigny and Bonnes-Mares, and it really deserves a promotion to Grand Cru. Even excluding this vineyard, Chambolle-Musigny's own village land should not be overlooked for great Pinot Noir, which can often come at a much lower price than Musigny Grand Cru wine...and in a similar style as well.

Solely Pinot Noir is produced in this outstanding village. The reds produced from Les Amoureuses and other Premier Cru vineyards of Chambolle-Musigny often lack the grand combination of weightlessness and power that characterizes great Musigny, but they can make up for it with an impressive perfume and good ageability.

History

The village of Chambolle-Musigny has revolved around its wine business for centuries. In 1882, the Chambolle village created a marketing strategy for their wine by changing their name to Chambolle-Musigny, adding the name of their Grand Cru. The AOC for Chambolle-Musigny was created in 1936, and the strange decision to allow white Chardonnay wine was made at this time as well.

Since then, the village has enjoyed a solid history, with a few ups and downs to chart the usual Côte de Nuits demand fluctuations. But overall their reputation of being very reliable and at times outstanding continues.

Climate and Viticulture

The Grand Cru vineyard known as Musigny happens to have a much higher elevation than does the Chambolle-Musigny village itself. In fact, Musigny eats up some of the highest land in the village. It's hard to argue over the quality of these stunning wines, and they probably have the advantage due to their land, but Chambolle-Musigny's own village and Premier Cru land has nearly the same optimization of weather conditions, rainfall patterns, and soil.

Grape Varieties

Major Producers

Quality is generally very high in Chambolle-Musigny, but this has driven wine prices sky-high. An "inexpensive" village bottle of Chambolle-Musigny might run $50, but it will have very little guarantee of quality, and is this really as fun as getting a Grand Cru-level Premier Cru for $150 or $200? So we recommend that for value, you look to the other appellations, and come to Chambolle-Musigny for a guarantee of high quality without the exclusivity--or even higher expense--of a Grand Cru wine.

There are no less than 13 producers that we think lead the field in Chambolle-Musigny.

In keeping with the idea that regions supersede producers in importance, the wines of these producers are described below.

Subregions

The village and blended Premier Cru wines in Chambolle-Musigny are often better than those of Premiers Crus from other villages. Among lieux-dits, Leroy's Les Fremières is notable.

The list of the 25 Chambolle Premiers Crus is as follows.

Chambolle-Musigny lays claim to the entirety of one Grand Cru vineyard and the majority of another.