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Bordeaux, Burgundy and a gift for the boss

A friend sent me an email about buying a “nice bottle” of Bordeaux or Burgundy to give as a gift.  Of course vintage always matters in these regions, but without knowing what store he was shopping at and/or what was available to him, I tried to create a list as general as possible – without vintages.  Here are a few of my favorites (running about $35 to $125/bottle) – I would not be disappointed to receive a bottle from any of these producers, regardless of the vintage …

Any Bordeaux fan would be thrilled with one of these:

  • Chateau Grand Corbin Despagne, Saint-Emilion
  • Chateau Sociando Mallet, Haut-Medoc
  • Chateau Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Pauillac
    (Yes, I prefer Comtesse to Baron)
  • Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere, Saint-Emilion

Reputation of producer is the most important factor when selecting Burgundy.  Here are some excellent producers:

  • Bruno Clair
  • Henri Gouges
  • Dujac
  • Domaine de l’arlot
  • Dominique Laurent

Next, I would consider the level (village, premier cru, grand cru.)   I highly suggest choosing at the Premier Cru (PC) level for a gift.  You must see the words “premier cru” or “1er cru” on the label.  There are many more PC than what I have listed below, so don’t be alarmed if you can’t find the exact one.  Again, producer is more important in Burgundy.  Personally, I would be thrilled with any PC, from any one of these villages, from any one of these producers.

Last, I would consider wine style preference.  I prefer these villages, in this order:

  • Chambolle-Musigny
    (PC: Les Charmes, Les Combottes) for nuance and delicacy
  • Gevrey-Chambertin
    (PC: Clos Saint-Jacques, Les Cazetiers) for balance of fruit and power
  • Nuits-Saints-Georges
    (PC: Les Perrieres) for juicy fruit

Kudos!  Another friend forwarded me his post titled: what to give your boss as a holiday gift.  A nice bottle is always appreciated – but a personal note goes so much farther than one could imagine!  Thanks to Ken at Corporate Intelligence Radio!