Côte de Beaune
The Côte de Beaune (pronounced koht duh BOHN) produces a variety of impressive reds, but it is renowned for its extraordinary whites made from Chardonnay. With such impressive appellations as Montrachet, Corton-Charlemagne and Meursault, there is no doubt that some of the best Chardonnay produced in the world comes from this area. The depth, complexity and creaminess are apparent on the palate and offer lovely acidity with apple, orange and tropical fruit flavors heightened by oak influence. There is an elegance achieved in these wines unlike no others. The Beaune whites are ideal wines for any white meat dish and even heavier seafood dishes.
There are 16 village appellations within the Côte de Beaune. They are as follows, from north to south: Ladoix-Serrigny, Aloxe-Corton, Pernand-Vergelesses, Savigny-Lès-Beaune, Chorey-Lès-Beaune, Beaune, Pommard, Volnay, Monthélie, Auxey-Duresses, Saint-Romain, Meursault, Puligny-Montrachet, Chassagne-Montrachet, Saint-Aubin and Santenay.
Côte de Beaune contains two district appellations. The first is Côte de Beaune Villages. These wines must be red and can come from one or more commune appellations of the Côte with the exception of Aloxe-Corton, Beaune, Pommard and Volnay. The other is Bourgogne-Hautes Côtes de Beaune. This appellation is similar to that in the Hautes Côtes de Nuits. Twenty-nine villages are included in the area, and much of the wine is vinified at a cooperative cellar in Beaune.
Although most famous for its Chardonnay, Côte de Beaune contains two communes, Pommard and Volnay, that produce Pinot Noir rivaling that of the Côte de Nuits. Pommard is known for its full-bodied, rich and concentrated Pinot Noir while Volnay is famous for producing elegant reds with finesse and softer tannins.