1 by Jean-Marc Schwarz, Côte d'Or Office de Tourisme
2. Vincent Dauvissat
3 by Jean-Marc Schwarz, Côte d'Or Office de Tourisme
4. Statue de St Vincent a la Maison de Marsanny by Frank Lechenet
5 by Jean-Pierre Chantret, Côte d'Or Office de Tourisme
6 Jam making, by Sarah Marsh
7 Conté cheese by Sarah Marsh
8. Olivier Lamy by Sarah Marsh
9. Renaud d Vilette
10. by Christian Terre en Vues Bon
11 Philippe Latour by Sarah Marsh
12. Sarah Marsh
13 Cheese of the Abbay de Cîteaux by Sarah Marsh

About the Burgundy Briefing


The Burgundy Briefing is a report which provides en primeur tasting notes on wine from a wide range of producers and a lively and current insight into the region. It is aimed at those who wish to keep informed about Burgundy's latest vintage, its people and topical wine issues.

This year it takes the form of an annual report. This annual report is Issue 9 which covers 2006 red and white wines from the Côte d'Or. The 290 pages consist mainly of tasting notes, but there are also vintage reports (red and white separately), hit lists of top wines and a profile of Louis-Michel Liger-Belair of Domaine Liger-Belair in Vosne-Romanée. Issue 9 is a large issue focusing on tasting notes. It costs £40. Previous issues have contained fewer tasting notes, but included a selection of the subjects in the box below. This list indicates areas which might be covered in any issue. Please note that the content has evolved since issue 1, the complimentary sample issue, to focus more on tastings and vintage reports. It should be considered as example of everything which might appear in an issue.



  • En primeur tasting (more below) and hit lists
  • Vintage reports
  • Grower Profiles
  • Topical issues
  • Tasting reviews
  • Best Burgundy wine lists in restaurants worldwide
  • Burgundy Traveller tips on accommodation, cultural events, places to visit and practicalities (this has been dropped for the present).
  • News and diary (including wine events in the region, auctions and merchants' tastings)

En primeur notes The Burgundy Briefing will continue the work of Clive Coates MW in his publication The Vine.

For the past twenty years Clive Coates has reviewed wines from a comprehensive range of growers and negociants across the Côte d'Or in the year following each vintage. Many visitors to this site have been subscribers to The Vine which ceased publication in 2005 to allow Clive to focus on writing books, giving presentations and to enjoy a life in France.
Clive Coates,   'When the news spread in Burgundy that I was ending The Vine after 20 years, I was approached by several growers who urged me to find a way to continue my work. Sarah seemed an obvious successor given that she had just become an MW and that I acted as her MW mentor, particularly in tasting classed growth Burgundy and Bordeaux wine. Her love of Burgundy has been evident and she deepened her knowledge of the region and its growers through an extended research trip to Burgundy in 2004 to write her MW dissertation on Pinot Noir clones in the vineyards of the top producers of the Côte d'Or. Sarah knows Burgundy well and most importantly she has the confidence of the growers. I have absolutely no commercial interest in her venture, but I urge you to give it a go, and I wish her every success.'

Clive was extraordinarily comprehensive in his visits, extending them over the years beyond the list of familiar producers. Initially I concentrated on well known producers, many of whom are now visited on an annual basis. The full list varies each year to include lesser known and new producers.


Approximate schedule There will always be a major issue released in December containing the en primeur tasting notes for red wine of the previous vintage. This appears marginally before most UK merchants release their annual Burgundy offers in January. For the first two years I released several issues over a year. There were separate issues for the en primeur notes for Chablis, red Côte d'Or and white Côte d'Or which included some Côte Chalonnais. If you wish to view the contents of past issues go to the menu and select 'past issues/synopses of past issues.' For the 2006 vintage there is just one bumper issue. (See 'current issue synopsis'). For the next issue, which will be number 10, I plan to visit Chablis in early summer 2008 to review the 2006 and 2007 vintages. The Côte d'Or whites will be reviewed either in the late summer or with the reds in December.


General tastings These include the annual 3-year-on tasting of Les Domaines Familiaux de Tradition. In the past there have been other tastings, for example a special focus on a specific village, such as Santenay in issue 4, or on a specific group of growers. Issue 5 featured the Artisans Vignerons de Bourgogne du Sud. In the future I hope to do more of these tastings.


Newsletter The Burgundy Briefing intentionally differs from The Vine in its regional focus on Burgundy. This is explored through tasting with the growers. The tasting notes include many views and opinions expressed in the introduction to each domaine or maison. There are detailed vintage reports, which encompass the experiences of individual growers. Most issues include a grower profile and a review of restaurant wine list, which is particularly strong on Burgundy. The content is weighted according to the tastings with more editorial in issues which do not carry extensive en primeur tasting notes. The sample issue illustrates everything which could be included. As there has been less interest from subscribers in the market reports and opinion slots, these areas have been discontinued. For the moment the 'Burgundy Traveller' section has also been dropped, but may well be included in future issues. News and diary sections appear when it seems relevant.


Length This depends on the tasting notes. The first issue (September/October 2005) was designed to be a little longer than average, 50 to 60 pages, as it included all possibilities. however as each issue became longer and longer, I decided to make the newsletter less frequent. Issue 8, the red 2005s, consists only of tasting notes and a vintage report has about 170 pages. The latest release, issue 9 has 290 pages, but is designed to cover the whole vintage.

Format Varying number of issues annually. Each issue can be purchased separately. Issue 1 is complimentary.

The editorial format has already evolved to reflect subscribers' interests. Recent issues contain tastings of mature wine including many verticals of Chablis in issue 5 and in issue 7 some ten-year verticals of Meursault. Comments and suggestions, via email, from the Burgundy enthusiasts who choose to support this venture are welcome. Where possible I shall respond to requests such as an issue to be investigated, a grower to be interviewed or a great wine list to be reviewed.


Receiving your subscribed-for issues. The newsletter is available online only. It is readable on and printable from the web. The first issue is available on this site as a sample issue with no charge. An email is sent out to subscribers when each new issue is released. This email contains a password to The Burgundy Briefing home page and current issue.  The Burgundy Briefing home page contains a merchant address list.

Vincent Dancer
Subscribers past issues. When a subscriber receives a password to the newly released issue, they also receive passwords to all their past issues.
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