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Jean-Noel Gagnard - Caroline Lestime Les Caillerets Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru, France 2005

Jean-Noel Gagnard - Caroline Lestime Les Caillerets Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru, France 2005

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Chassagne Montrachet

A long, wandering village in the Côte de Beaune. Fortunately, what the workaday village lacks in charm, the wines more than make up for. Most famous for its white wines, which are lovely and delicate, Chassagne-Montrachet actually produces more red than white wine. It is one of the few places in the Côte D'Or where both red and white wines are produced from Premier Cru vineyards. The Grands Crus are Montrachet, Bâtard Montrachet (both shared with the neighboring village of Puligny) and Criots Bâtard Montrachet.

Chardonnay

It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, Mâcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.

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