Fornerot's Stellar Deal in White Burgundy, from the Edge of an Edge
Keep an eye out because this domaine is going places.
—Neal Martin, Vinous
Ten years ago now, we introduced the concept of the “Edges of Burgundy”. At the time, everybody was complaining about soaring Burgundy prices (though don’t you wish you could be paying 2014 Burgundy prices now?). We observed that all the soaring prices were confined to mostly famous producers in mostly famous villages. Step just outside that magic circle, and Burgundy bargains abounded.
That magic circle has expanded in the last ten years. Our best example of a Burgundy “Edge” was Saint-Aubin, a village bordering Chevalier-Montrachet that offered incredibly high quality white Burgundy for a fraction of the price. Saint-Aubin is still a pretty good source of white Burgundy value, but the secret is out. It's unfortunately far more expensive than it used to be.
But all hope is not lost. The circle may be a bit wider today, but all that means is that we need to look a bit further afield to find the best values. Today, we start in Saint-Aubin, but then climb slightly upwards into the Hautes Côtes de Beaune. There, we find a sensational value in white Burgundy.
The producer is Domaine Jérôme Fornerot, and their story explains why quality Burgundy is popping up in ever more far-flung places. They traditionally sold off their grapes to négociants. But because of all those Burgundy price hikes, it has finally become economically feasible for them to produce and bottle their own wines. In fact, they are now able to invest in a larger and better wine-making facility, promising even higher quality in the future.
With a bit more ripeness from the changing climate and a deft hand in the cellar, Fornerot is producing high-quality wine from this historically cooler site. This Hautes Côtes de Beaune drinks like a top Saint-Aubin, with its tangy orange blossoms and cutting minerality. It is rich, but not too rich, and certainly long and intense.
Jérôme Fornerot, Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Beaune, 2022 $35.99
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