Let’s put Aligoté in the spot today! Aligoté, Burgundy’s ‘other’ white grape variety, may be very much Chardonnay’s underdog but in a fine year, when ripeness can compensate for its characteristic acidity, Aligoté is not short of champions and is arguably a beneficiary of climate change. The vine is vigorous and its yield varies enormously according to the vineyard site. Bad examples are dry wines that are usually thin, acidic andoften not very pleasant. Such Aligoté can be improved by adding crème de cassis, a local blackcurrant liqueur, to create an aperitif known as a Kir. When good, if grown on Burgundy’s best slopes on the poorest soils in warmer years, it can make a refreshing change with more nerve from ubiquitous Chardonnay wines. Whilst it can age, it’s a wine for drinking young. Bourgogne Aligoté may be sold as primeur or nouveau from the 3rd Thursday of November following the harvest. The finest Bourgogne-Aligoté wines come from the village of Bouzeron in the Mercurey region, which has its own appellation. ☝️The 1er cru 1911 Aligoté vines of Domaine Ponsot in Morey St.Denis — the only 1er cru Aligoté in Burgundy. 2012 Domaine Leroy Aligoté (90+pts) Herbal, flowers, Époisses cheese. Ripeness. Huge concentration, complexity, sublime, driving freshness. Must be among the best Aligoté I tasted. The Domaine Leroy Aligoté is separate from Leroy’s Collection label: it’s produced from avg. 55 yo vines, owned and worked by Leroy themselves, with each bottle individually numbered. In the vineyard Madame Bize-Leroy practises biodynamism as well as severe pruning and crop-thinning. This is clearly visible in her Aligoté which is made in tiny quantities. Special wine from one of the world’s top producers. 2017 Domaine Charles Audoin Aligoté (87pts) Pale yellow with greenish hue. Medium intensity grassy herbal aromas. Floral midpalate. Fresh with no signs of oak, acidic, but round finish. Citrus aftertaste. Edgy and young. Vines in Marsannay. 2017 Domain Chavy-Chouet Bourgogne Aligoté Les Petits Poiriers (87pts) Vibrant, light and fresh with plenty of citrus and yellow fruits, somewhat exotic. 60yo vines growing on deep clay soil in Puligny.