St Veran from Domaine des Deux Roches: White Burgundy you Can Afford to Enjoy Every Night

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 The label on the bottle,
glistening with a few
drops of this special wine.

My love of good white wine has grown tremendously over the past year. Maybe it is the wonderful vintages, maybe it is the refreshing, cool citrus and mineral flavors. Of course, it’s not just any white wine that rings my chimes – it takes a white Burgundy. Like many of you, I like to savor the time at the end of the day when the work is done with a glass in my hard.

I particularly like a white Burgundy with a price tag that means I can enjoy it with out checking to see if the Dow is up that day. Yes, that’s a bit trickier to nail down in the pricey paradise of white Burgundies.

But, if you travel south to the Macon region – then you can find what I’m looking for. Ah-h and you’ll have a good time doing it – the land there is lush and lovely beyond description.

The Collovray and Terrier families created the Domaine des Deux Roches in 1986 in the Maconnais wine region, south of the Cote d’Or. Out of this marriage comes some of the most compelling St Verans in the region.

Deux Roches refers to the two gigantic rock cliffs that punctuate the landscape here: Vergisson and Solutre. The estate is in Davaye which is considered the best source of St Veran. The quite limited St Veran vineyards are to the north and the south of the Pouilly Fuisse vineyards but the northern vineyards make the best wines and this is where Davaye is found.

Here’s what Jean-Luc Terrier says about his winemaking:

“We reverted with passion to the traditional methods of our grandfathers as if they were something new and extraordinary. Here we are, making our own compost again instead of using chemical fertilizers. And far from boosting yields, we prune severely and then go out into the vineyards again in summer to thin the fruit for perfect ripeness and better quality.”

Here is what La Revue said about Terrier’s wines:

“…the estate has become a locomotive for the appellation of St Veran and one of the most important properties. The estate uses impeccable technology creating wines of a reasonable price. These wines are an interesting alternative to the whites from the Cotes de Beaune.” – “The Best Wines from France 2010,” La Revue du Vin de France

Hey! That’s exactly what I said.

And 2009 is a lovely vintage. Allen Meadows of Burghound describes the 2009 vintage as, “rich and full but not heavy.” He counsels, “I would be buying the ’09s more for their fruit-forward characters and ability to be enjoyed young.” He also writes, “the whites from Chablis, the Mâconnais and the Côte Chalonnaise remain screaming bargains relative to the Côte d’Or and much of the New World.” Buy enough!

Stephen Tanzer (of International Wine Cellar) gives his take on the 2009 white burgundies: “The wines from a number of estates I visited seem much fresher and more classic-aromatic, silky and utterly beguiling.” It is interesting to me that St Veran was intended to be part of Pouilly Fuisse when that area received its AOC back in the 30’s, but St Veran rejected the idea. Most growers were making red wine back then and they didn’t think it would be an advantageous fit. Also, appellations were a new concept and St Veran was a feisty small bunch of growers who feared the government was going to start butting into their business.

It wasn’t until 1971 that St Veran received its official AOC. This reinvigorated the area, convincing many of the growers to stop selling in bulk, start taking more care about quality, and begin bottling their own wines.

Let’s all have a glass of Collovray &Terrier St Veran, shall we? Cynthia Hurley

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