The apparently insatiable demand for fine wine to a large extent insulates Gevrey and the Cote de Nuits from the rest of France’s economic woes. Daily concerns tend to focus on the impact of the weather on the date of the harvest, rather than the dark clouds gathering over the state of the country’s finances!
Burgundy as an International tourist destination has progressed hand in hand with growing international appreciation of the quality of the wine produced. Since Les Deux Chevres opened in June 2013, as well as a large contingent of visitors from all over France, we have welcomed guests from the four corners of the world. New visitors are struck by the quality of our renovation, the beauty and tranquility of the surroundings, the ancient history, the art on display, and the proximity to so many famous names and producers.
And it appears to have always been so! In the 12c and 13c the area was a destination for pilgrims heading to northern Spain. Whether wine tourism was a significant factor in their choice of route is not known! Just behind Les Deux Chevres is the premier cru vineyard Clos St Jacques – named after St Jacques de Compostelle.
Much more recently, (in 1787 in fact!) the medieval wall that encloses the southern boundary of Clos St Jacques was sketched by future US president Thomas Jefferson when he passed through Burgundy, on the occasion of one of his roving wine tours, while US Ambassador in Paris. The wall which wends its way up the Cote is one of the most majestic and beautiful sights in the area, and understandably popular with our American friends. Jefferson was particularly taken with the Burgundy wine Chambertin, and when he became US President placed a large order for the White House cellars.
A long spell of very good weather in Gevrey - almost from the end of February to mid July, augurs well for vintage 2014. This year should deliver a more generous harvest, (although one good year is not likely to make much of a difference to the chronic imbalance between worldwide demand for Burgundy wines, and the ability of the local vigneron to supply them!). The days when it was possible to purchase old vintages from wine makers in Gevrey are long since gone, with many of them having little or no wine to sell after satisfying regular customer allocations.
PS one of our guests recently sent us the following link to the history of ownership of Clos St Jacques which appeared in a Winehog newsletter.