At the southern tip of the Côte de Beaune lies the somewhat lesser-known appellation of Maranges. It’s a neighbor of Domaine de Cromey, the home of Elden Selections and illustrates nicely how much things have moved on in this area over the last thirty years or so. When we first arrived in Burgundy, nearby Santenay was considered to be rustic and no one even mentioned les Maranges. Now, producers like Bernard Regnaudot and his son Florian are among the locomotives of quality wine production in the area, and the appellation is the chou-chou of the local wine world.
The Regnaudots farm 16 acres in Dézize-Lès-Maranges, the center of les Maranges You can now find their Premier Cru ‘Clos de Loyères 2017 in the Elden online shop. Black cherry in both color and flavor, it’s a gutsy wine – round and balanced. You’ll detect a touch of cocoa on that black fruit right through to the long finish.
Although variable, the soil is generally marly with limestone. White wines used to account for less than 1% of the output but now make up more than 15%, with more on the way due to ongoing plantation in Chardonnay. White Maranges should be brilliant greeny gold, mineral and floral. Those who like their wines grassy, nutty and with a fresh minerality that continues through a long finish won’t be disappointed. This white would be a great choice for soft, unctuous dishes like fish cous-cous, mushroom risotto or poultry in a creamy sauce. For cheese pairings, look for a Beaufort or Comté.
Maranges produces wines from three communes just west of the more well-known village of Santenay, bearing the suffix -Lès-Maranges: Sampigny, Dézize and Cheilly all share the Maranges cru and are insider discoveries for those who love small-production Burgundy. For those with an historical bent, the AOC only came into existence in 1989 at the time of the amalgamation of the villages. And, although lying in the département of Saône-et-Loire, the appellation forms an integral part of the Côte de Beaune).
“Climats” classified as 1er Cru are:
Santenay and the surrounding area is not typical of the Côte de Beaune on the whole and has a wide range of soil types – sometimes producing deep reds which are long-lived, and sometimes lighter more accessible reds. The Santenay AOC region covers 282 hectares for red production and 46 for white. Climats specified as Premier Cru are:
This is a superb area to explore for many reasons, not just the excellent wine. The picture-postcard sight of the windmill of Santenay-Beauregard, site of several of the Domaine Borgeot best Santenay vineyards. provides an excellent picnic spot in a town that goes right back to Roman origins, and initially came to be because of the spa waters. Though the baths have been closed for year, they are currently being renovated, and will soon be receiving guests seeking the curative waters. Fancy a little gambling? Then the casino at Bas-Santenay is the place for you, and from there why not head out on to the terrace to crown the day with another winning choice – a wine from Maranges.