In the past decade, St.-Aubin has been a great appellation for value in white Burgundy. Lately, prices have increased, too much in my opinion, to as much as $80 per bottle.
Yet there are still some producers who have kept prices reasonable for their Chardonnays. And at its best, St.-Aubin—an appellation whose stony soils lie behind Puligny-Montrachet—approaches the character of the wines from its grander neighbor, offering precision, elegance and an essence of mineral.
I like St.-Aubin wines from a premier cru vineyard called Les Murgers des Dents de Chien. It's situated on top of the hill above the grand cru Chevalier-Montrachet and adjacent to the Puligny-Montrachet premiers crus Champ Gain and La Garenne.
This bottle, from the négociant Alex Gambal, revealed an enticing whiff of ripe peach fruit, hot stone and oak spice. Very clean and pure, the Chardonnay had cut and mineral intensity, with generous peach, quince and the flesh of the 2006 vintage. I gave it 91 points, non-blind. At $35 to $40 retail, this is where value and quality meet in white Burgundy.
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