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Elden Selections

Elden Selections
December 16, 2023 | Elden Selections

Heart of Burgundy Newsletter - December 2023

Heart of Burgundy - December 2023


Greetings Friends,

December marks a turning point in the year here in Burgundy.  The harvest is over. The new wine is agitated, not ready to settle just yet.  The light-hearted heavy heads of the Hospices de Beaune festivities give way to a serenity that comes from a job well done. Winter settles in. Thoughts turn to wood fires. Another wardrobe. The smell of pine fills Cromey's pressoir hall.  The holidays arrive.   We here at Cromey spend a good part of our year making ready for this season. Whether the festivities are here in Burgundy or there where you are, we have taken care throughout the year to bring you the best of the best. So allow us to pop a cork, raise a glass and wish you all a bountiful holiday season. As a new year hurtles towards us, let's make a few moments slow, to appreciate, to anticipate. Yes, it's December again.  And wherever you are, and whatever that means to you, we hope you'll join us in celebration.

All the best from Burgundy.

Dennis Sherman
Elden Selections


Our Holiday Message to You

Imagine your family holiday celebrations...a la Francaise! With all of the festive spirit and the trappings of Christmas...but with a French twist! 

The traditions, the tastes. The sights and sounds. The Burgundy countryside in its winter robe.  The charm of the villages, glittering holiday finery. Even sleigh bells in the snow!

At the Domaine de Cromey, we make Christmas come alive with a different accent. And there's something new and wonderful for everyone. Parents, kids...and grandchildren. Friends and family all together.  Familiar and different, at a stroke.

Close your eyes and picture yourself and your loved ones in front of the fire in the great Pressoir hall, decked with garlands and wreathed with pine.   A French holiday banquet served at a resplendent table, and the best Burgundy wines from the Cromey cellar.  

At Cromey we weave dreams. We'll take your senses and transport them to Burgundy for the holidays.  The sights and sounds, the tastes and the tingle. All made just for you, to suit just you and yours.

That's Cromey. It's what we do best.  Be it Christmas, a special food-and-wine experience, or that trip of a lifetime.  We make it yours.  

Let yourself dream. It's all at Cromey.

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Elden Selections Makes Their Bid for Great Wines at the Hôtel-Dieu Auction 2023

The centre of quality wine in France is Burgundy, (at least in our humble opinion). The centre of Burgundy is Beaune; and the centre of Beaune? Well, that is arguably the most breathtakingly beautiful and historically important Hôtel-Dieu. Owned by the Hospices Civils de Beaune, this remarkably well-preserved heritage site was founded in 1443 and remained in operation until the early 1970s, before a modern hospital, better adapted to the evolution of care, was built on the outskirts.

Every year on the third Sunday in November, the most famous wine auction in the world happens—the Hôtel-Dieu charity wine sale. For those who haven’t attended an auction before or aren’t familiar with how it works, there can be a lot to learn. That’s one thing that we enjoy doing here at Elden Selections – helping, teaching and revealing some of the most incredible experiences of Burgundy. We have been buying many of these wines by the barrel for our clients for over 10 years now.

This year was no exception. We had a group at Cromey who amongst them bought a barrel. And we bought another two barrels, some for clients and some for our cellars in France and the US. It was great fun, with professional tasting, visits to Beaune and the Hotel Dieu,
street food in Beaune, great meals and Hospices wines from our previous purchases at Cromey (some of which you can check out here). All in all, an exciting and memorable auction day in the hall.

We bought 3 barrels in total:

First was a Beaune 1er Cru 'Cuvée Guigone de Salines' 2023... (so good we bought two of these!)

Then came a barrel of Beaune 1er Cru Greves 'Cuvée Pierre Floquet' 2023.

The wine will now be raised for approximately 15 months by the Domaine Borgeot, before bottling and shipment to our US cellars. We'll keep some at Cromey (of course) for future comparative tastings.

Who knows, maybe you’ll come and visit us at our home in Burgundy and share them with us? For 2024 we are running an M&M style week for the Hospices at Domaine de Cromey, where individual couples can come and join in one of our Burgundy House Parties

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Winter Whites - Click Here


Elden Selection’s Palate Advisor – Your Online Taste Guide

In this next segment of our exploration of Elden Selection’s new Palate Advisor tool, we look at Juicy, floral reds and Full-bodied Chardonnays. These are just two of the categories you can select on to instantly view a range of superb Burgundy wines, expertly matched according to your tastes.

These are not just labels to fit a wine into a category though; these tasting notes are the result of thirty years of living and loving Burgundy. The Domaine de Cromey—home of by Elden Selections—is imbued with that spirit. It’s an organic, uncompromising, passionate pursuit of excellence in the simplest things. The wines that the palate advisor recommends for you are from masterful winemakers—their best wines, that we’ve followed from vineyard to bottle, vintage to vintage.

Juicy, Floral Red Wines

It is the world-famous terroir that accounts for the many different types of red wine produced in Burgundy, almost entirely from just a single grape variety. Some are earthy, leathery and powerful—others are softer, floral and distinctly juicy. For these more flowery wines, you can’t do better than look for wines from Volnay, Beaune or Givry. They are also easily matched with great foods such as dishes like Oeufs en Muerette or Goats Cheese Espuma, both of which appear in our very own Ellie’s cookbook.

The beauty of Pinot Noir is that it can be subtly different in every wine—same grape, but different expression. You could say there are as many expressions as there are winemakers, and Elden Selections works with the best of them. 

Domaine Pierre Thibert, for example, has already achieved more than most people will in a lifetime: he and his family built a solid family domain, a world-class reputation and a sophisticated style over the course of a single generation. It allowed him to produce wines like his ripe and juicy Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru 'Rue de Chaux'. Another producer doing great things in the juicy, floral style is Pierre Naigeon. His Domaine is now more than 11.5 hectares (almost 28 acres), with an incredible 50 different plots in the Côte de Nuits. Wines of his to look out for in this style include his Gevrey-Chambertin 'En Sylvie' – think flowers and lace, but also opulence and richness.

Full-Bodied Chardonnay

When we talk of white Burgundy wines, again the same variety of expression is found. Fresh, mineral and floral happily sit side-by-side amongst more complex, full-bodied Chardonnays. But Burgundy also has one advantage over wines from hotter climates like those California Chardonnays which can tend to be on the ‘flabby’ side and lack acidity. The climate in Burgundy means producers here can keep the acidity and still produce full-bodied whites, which also have great aging potential. 

To understand what we mean, you need to try some of the producers we work with. Jean Dauvissat Pere et Fils (the ‘fils’ being his son Fabien), for example, produces great Chablis which is both round and mature but also has wonderful lemony acidity. It's a vineyard that gets great exposure to the sun all year long, giving it an extra degree of sugar ripeness at harvest. That ripeness translates to alcohol and hence 'body'. If you like a big fat Chardonnay, try a Chablis Fourchaume.

Other notable winemakers in this style include Domaine Gilles Bouton and Jean-Baptiste Ponsot whose 1er Cru Rully is ripe, elegant and complex, with an extremely long finish. 

Explore Your Palate in Our New Tasting Room

When you’ve selected your wines using the palate advisor, you need somewhere to sample them— in luxury Burgundian surroundings and with other like-minded folk. Where better than the brand new Domaine de Cromey tasting room? It’s true what they say about tasting wine on the ground it was made in and aged under; there’s something captured in the spirit of Burgundy wine in Burgundy that you just can’t replicate anywhere else, especially when it’s paired with Burgundian food. Many of our customers come here to make their own physical connection between the Elden wines they’ve enjoyed at home and the place they originate from. 

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Ellie's Cookbook - Meat Dishes and What to Drink with Them

This month we continue our culinary journey through some of the most quintessential Burgundy recipes, all lovingly detailed in Ellie’s cookbook, and often to be found on the dinner table at the Domaine de Cromey. Below are some of the meat dishes, but there are recipes based around fish, shellfish, cheese, salads, and desserts. Each recipe has suggestions for which wines to pair with the dishes, to really bring out the best of Burgundy’s flavors.

A light and imaginative dish, especially good in the summer months, is the Citrus Cured Duck Breast with a Grapefruit, Fennel and Hazelnut Salad. The flavors here are a wonderful melange of sweet, salty and sour – but that doesn’t mean it has to be hard to pair with wine. A good choice would be the Domaine Albert Boillot Pommard 1er Cru 'En Largilliere' - Pommard's density is its most important feature when combining with food, and it goes best of all with game and poultry. 

Sticking with the poultry theme is the Roasted Quail with Cromey Garden Vegetables. The meat is cooked on the bone to retain as much flavor as possible. For a rich, sweet, autumnal dish such as this, you need something like the Domaine Thierry Mortet Bourgogne Rouge 'Les Charmes de Daix'. Delicate and refined, it can go with dishes like quail that are naturally aromatic. If you’re looking for something even more special, you could even try his Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru 'Les Beaux Bruns'- powerful and delicate, making it a perfect match with sophisticated cuisine such as this. 

If you prefer chicken, then consider Slow Roasted Bresse Chicken - brined and then roasted slowly to retain the maximum flavour possible. The suggestion here is to pair it with a Monthélie wine from the Domaine Potinet-Ampeau, another of Elden’s wine producers. The reds of Monthélie can be velvety but quite firm, with tannins that need roasted meats with a crunchiness, and the 1er Cru 'Champs Fulliots' is a match made in heaven. 

There are lamb dishes too, but rather than simply serving meat and veg there is real originality in the Phyllo Wrapped Lamb Noisettes with Goat Cheese. This is an earthy dish, but light at the same time, so we look for a wine keeping with that profile: a Pinot from the fringes. Consider the Chateau Cary Potet Bourgogne Rouge. You could also opt for a Santenay, with a rustic edge, or try a village Nuits-St. Georges, slightly ‘animal’, gutsy, but fruity.

There are several notable beef dishes in the cookbook; the Warm Beef Carpaccio with Gorgonzola in particular. If cooked well, the beef and the cheese will both simply melt in the mouth. Over in Auxey-Duresses, Agnes Paquet makes a great Bourgogne Pinot Noir which will go with this dish, a classic from a producer whose attention to detail is second to none. It’s not too elaborate, and allows the meat to really sing. A good St Romain red would probably also make an appearance if this was served at Domaine de Cromey.

Finally, what list of Burgundy cuisine would be complete without that most quintessential of classic dishes – Beef Bourguignon? "Bourguignon" was a name given to various dishes prepared with wine or with a mushroom and onion garnish in the mid-nineteenth century, and is a sort of homage to locally-prized Charolais cattle. There is the “Fête du Charolais”, a festival that takes place in the Burgundy town of Saulieu where musicians, meat lovers and farmers alike gather in the streets, inviting anyone to enjoy an unforgettable gastronomic experience having traditional “Bœuf Bourguignon”. You should drink what makes you happy when it comes to this dish – any rich, complex red wine will work a treat – but make sure it’s from Burgundy, of course. 

To learn more, follow this link to Ellie’s recipes, where you can also sign up to receive her excellent book, or head to YouTube to watch some recipe videos

Elden Selection’s Burgundy Wine Club also offers members the chance to find out more about the wines of Burgundy, sending four shipments per year. Members also receive invitations to member-only virtual events in the US; 2 specially selected wine glasses; tasting notes; and the chance to win a stay at the Burgundy manor house Domaine de Cromey.

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 Burgundy Wine Club - Click for more info


Our Most Popular Offers This Month

Discover the epitome of Burgundy's excellence and exceptional value at Elden Selections on Don't miss out on our latest and most sought-after offers from the previous month.

Get Your Holiday Wines On Time!
Choose 2nd Day Air at checkout and use Coupon Code: UP2

Red Burgundy Offers

Hospices de Beaune 1er Cru 'Guigone de Salins' 2023 - Futures
This is one of the barrels that we bought a week ago at the annual Hospices de Beaune Charity Wine Auction. The 2023 vintage was a bumper crop, both in quality and quantity. And Ludivine Griveau and her team at the Hospices domain have served up a masterpiece. This wine will spend the next 15 months being tended to by the Domaine Borgeot, one of our top producers. They will then bottle it and label it with the famous Hospices label. Then Elden will ship it to our US cellars for distribution to the lucky few who have been part of our consortia or who have purchased futures. Full Case $1,800 or 6-Pack $900

Domaine Mouton Givry 1er Cru 'Clos Jus' 2021
Domaine Mouton's aptly-named 'Clos Jus' ('jus' means 'juice') is the Mouton wine we go to first. Always ripe and juicy, ready to drink relatively early. Minerality is the key here, from a vineyard with different soil make-up to the rest of the appellation. Dark fruit, earth notes, delicate structure fleshed out to fullness. We appreciate the finesse in the winemaking, an unstinting perfectionism that has been communicated across a generation. The self-effacing Moutons would be the last to admit it, but for us their wines are nearly always perfect. $708

Gabin and Felix Richoux Irancy 'Veaupessiot' 2014 and 2015
This is Pinot Noir in a style all its own, with delicate cherry fruit and brooding minerality. This single vineyard 'Veaupessiot' sits on a point over looking the river valley with perfect exposition. Gabin and Felix Richoux holds back their wines until they feel they have developed enough. $696

Spotlight: Michel Arcelain Mixed Case
The wines of Domaine Arcelain are timeless classics. Never brash, they do drink well young; however, hidden within these powerfully subtle wines, there is an immense ability to age and improve. $864

White Burgundy Offers

Winter Whites Mixed Case
Already dreaming about enjoying the perfect white wine by the fire with family and friends? Enjoy this hand curated selection of incredible wines to enjoy with friends and family. $708

Domaine Ponsot White Rully
This is White Burgundy for grown-ups. Precision, tension, definition, beautiful fruit, balance. These are wines from the best parcels in the appellation.Tiny yields. Miniscule quantities. Masterful winemaking. Mixed Case $768 or 6-Pack $384

Mixed Red & White Burgundy Offers

Everyday Burgundy Mixed Case
Reasonably Priced Burgundy?  Dedicated to the Proposition That You Can Drink Burgundy Everyday!  At these prices, you need never again be afraid to open a Burgundy when you feel like it! $544

Christmas Dinner Case
Wrapping paper? Check. Scissors and tape? Check. Glass of wine? We hope the answer to this is also “check!” Spending time wrapping gifts is a perfect time to treat yourself to world-class Burgundy—so as you take the time to pack up presents for loved ones, give yourself a gift with this illustrious mixed case. A full case featuring reds and whites, all of them perfectly expressing their unique Burgundy terroir. $728

12 Days of Burgundy Mixed Case
Here are 12 different Burgundies that cost under $42 each
It's a 12 bottle mixed case, 6 white and 6 red. This should get you through the holidays! Taste the variety that is Burgundy at a very affordable price! Happy holidays! $464

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