Exclusive, elusive, enchanting – the wine tour to the Côte d’Or, the heart of Burgundy
A close look at the world famous villages, rare wines, and family vineyards
— This wine tour takes you to the Côte d’Or, the heart of Burgundy. It is a magic place. It can easily make anyone dream. It is a special feeling to travel through these famous villages that produce some of the world’s most expensive wines. And some of the most fabulous. And at the same time, making wine in Burgundy is not easy. It takes a skilful winemaker to bring out the best in the pinot noir and chardonnay grapes. This is a wine tour with fantastic wines and high-class French gastronomy.
When it comes to Burgundy wines, especially the red pinot noir, you really have to know where to go to find the best. It is not enough to see that it says “Grand Cru” on the label. You also have to know who has made the wine. Nowhere else is the family name on the bottle as important as here. The best way to discover the very best of Burgundy is to go there, and to go there with someone who knows where to find the gems.
La Côte d’Or, the golden slope, is full of exciting vineyard. The classification system can sometimes seem complicated but when you come here you will see that it is actually quite straight forward. The producers that we will visit are a mix of famous and well-known wineries and raising stars.
On this trip you will have the opportunity to taste a large number and wide range of wines, from “simple” AOC / AOP Bourgogne up to the finest and most exclusive Grand Cru. In few wine regions you get as lavish wine tastings as on this trip to Burgundy.
The winery visits are planned so that you will get a good overview of the way they make wine here in Burgundy as well as the viticulture in the vineyards. Here in Burgundy the barrel aging in the cellar also plays a very important role and you will get a close look at that.
Our visits will be focussed on the Côte d’Or, the heart of Burgundy. We stay centrally in Beaune, perhaps France’s most charming wine village that has around 20,000 inhabitants. There are many restaurants to choose from.
In the centre of town you can find the Hôtel Dieu (les Hospices de Beaune), a magnificent building in Flemish-Burgundian style finished in 1451. Yes, 1451! The original purpose was as a hospital. It was then used as a retirement home until 1971 and is now a museum. One of France’s greatest architectural historical monuments.
There is no shortage of gastronomic specialities in Burgundy and you will be sure to enjoy some special meals. You can try Burgundian specialities such as jambon persillé (ham flavoured with parsley, preferably matched with a glass of aligoté), oeuf en meurette (poached egg in red wine sauce, an odd but delicious combination), escargots (snails, of course), boeuf bourguignon and coq au vin. In Beaune there are plenty of restaurants ranging from cosy bistrots to gastronomic Michelin starred temples.
Whatever you do don’t forget to save some space for the cheese! There are many delicious local specialities.
The strong-flavoured Epoisses is one of the most famous. It is never mass-produced but only made in artisanal dairies according to principles developed by the Cistercian monks a long time ago. The maturation of the Epoisses takes three months during which time it is regularly rubbed with marc de Bourgogne.
Marc is the local equivalent to the Italian grappa, a distilled alcohol made from grape skins. It is the perfect ending to a long dinner in Beaune (the marc in a glass, not the cheese…).
You go to Beaune on your own, for example by train from Paris (2 hours), or by flying to Lyon or Geneva.
This is a fabulous wine tour with many outstanding wines, gastronomic meal with regional specialities, personal private winery visits and beautiful scenery.
The tour is led by one of BKWine’s wine and travel expert guides.
We have written a lot about Burgundy and about wine touring in the region, what to do and what to expect.
Here you can find more about travelling in Burgundy.
You can also find more information on the Burgundy wines on BKWine Magazine.
Program — Burgundy wine tour
This is a sample program, an example. Every wine and food tour that we organise is different and specially adapted for the season and the circumstances. Details in the program, e.g. which producers we visit, will be different each time.
For more details, contact BKWine.
- Day 1 — Arrival in Beaune
- Day 2 — Côte de Nuits
- Day 3 — Côte de Beaune
- Day 4 — Northern Côte de Beaune
- Day 5 — Heading back home
Wednesday / Day 1 — Arrival in Beaune
You arrive in Beaune and check into our cosy hotel, Hôtel La Belle Epoque***, centrally located, just a stone’s throw from Hôtel Dieu.
Beaune is a town with a lot of personality. It has a very old town centre. There are plenty of restaurants and cafés to explore. You can find both traditional French in neighbourhood bistros, luxurious gourmet restaurants, even excellent Japanese food (if you feel the need for something different). Plenty to keep you busy in the evenings.
By the main square, Place Carnot, you can find the Hôtel Dieu (Hospices de Beaune) that you should definitely try and visit. It is one of Burgundy’s and France’s great tourist attractions. It is, or was, a hospital dating back to the 15th century. In the courtyard you can see the extraordinary coloured roof tiles, typical for Burgundy.
The evening is free to stroll around Burgundy.
Thursday / Day 2 — Côte de Nuits
After breakfast our bus picks us up and we leave Beaune heading north. We will pass the famous Corton mountain and continue to the Côtes de Nuits.
We will visit a winery that is just on the border between Côte de Beaune and Côte de Nuits, in the middle of the famous vineyard Clos des Langres. We will of course taste the wine of that name but also some other selected wines, including Grand Crus.
We continue north and pass several famous villages, not least Romanée-Conti. We will make a stop to go and look at the most exclusive and expensive of all of the Grand Crus, La Romanée Conti, La Tâche, and Richebourg. Mythical vineyards and wine, today fetching several thousand euros. Per bottle.
Further north we pass Gevrey-Chambertin, with the famous Chambertin Grand Cru, and arrive in Fixin where we will make a stop at the winery run by Philippe and Martine Bernard, the Clos Saint Louis. First we go for a walk in the nearby vineyard together with Philippe, the owner and winemaker. He will explain about the important work in the vineyard.
After the short walk Martine and Philippe invite us to a lovely buffet lunch in their home. All is prepared by Martine, except the cheeses that come from a nearby dairy. With lunch we will taste a range of the estates wines.
The afternoon visit will be at a prestigious wine estate just next to the Clos de Vougeot chateau-monastery. Late afternoon we arrive back at our hotel.
Evening is free to stroll around Beaune and to discover the old town centre. Go for a walk along the narrow streets; admire the many centuries old houses and perhaps the imposing Town Hall.
Friday / Day 3 — Côte de Beaune
Today we head south, first to Pommard and then on to Meursault and Puligny-Montrachet, magic names to every Burgundy lover.
We will visit a small family-run winery in Puligny-Montrachet with 8 hectares of vineyards spread out, as often is the case, across several different locations. The family makes 14 different wines from chardonnay, aligoté, pinot noir and gamay grapes. We will have an extensive tasting of their range of wines.
We will also visit the beautiful château in the Chassagne-Montrachet village, with a very modern, almost high-tech winery and old wine cellar. The château is a big producer of Burgundy wines. After the visit to the winery we will have a traditional Burgundian lunch at the chateau while tasting several of their wines.
We continue south to Santenay, almost as far south it is possible to go without leaving the Côte de Beaune. Here we will visit a family winery run by two brothers. They have old vines and low yields and are very diligent in the way they work in the vineyard. This all contribute to the excellent quality of their wines. They have vineyards not only in Santenay but also in Chassagne-Montrachet and several other Burgundy villages.
Late afternoon we return to Beaune. The evening is free. Perhaps an occasion to explore one more of the excellent restaurants, why not after first having had an aperitif at a wine bar?
Saturday / Day 4 — Northern Côte de Beaune
Today will be spent exploring the northern part of the Côte de Beaune: the villages Aloxe-Corton and Pernand-Vergelesses.
These two villages snuggle up to the Corton hill. Corton itself is the biggest Grand Cru in Burgundy. The more than 100 hectares are divided into many small vineyards.
We will visit some very exciting wine producers, family wineries, like Domaine Chapuis in Aloxe-Corton and Domaine Martin-Dufour in Chorey-lès-Beaune. We will certainly step down into the old barrel cellar filled with oak barrels and wine bottles, taste several wines, and maybe even have time for a walk in the vineyards.
We will stop for lunch in Aloxe-Corton, at a wine producers’, where we will have the opportunity to taste a range of his wines, including some excellent Premier Cru and Grand Cru.
Late afternoon we return to Beaune and to the hotel. Evening is free for a final Burgundian dinner. Perhaps to go hunting for the Burgundy specialities that you have not yet tasted?
Sunday / Day 5 — Heading back home
The tour ends after breakfast. Departure.
Program may be subject to minor modifications.
Tour Details — Wine tour to Burgundy
Price per person: This is a sample program. Look in the menu “Our Tours > Scheduled Tours” to check what scheduled tours are currently on the program or contact us to discuss a custom made private wine tour.
Included in the price:
- 4 hotel nights, double occupancy, including breakfast
- Hôtel La Belle Epoque*** i Beaune (other options available)
- Meals as described in the program (*):
- 3 gastronomic multi-course lunches at wineries, or regional restaurants, with local specialities, including wines
- Start and end point: Beaune, Burgundy
- Bus transport
- All vineyard and winery visits
- Private, high quality tastings at wineries, approx. 3 per day
- Translation as needed: some visits may be in English, others in French
- Wine guiding and wine tutoring by an expert BKWine guide during the whole trip
(*) See below for more important information on our meals.
- Travel (flights) to the destination and back from your home location.
You organise your travel to Beaune yourself. If you want assistance with organising your flight tickets etc, please contact us.
We warmly recommend that you plan a few extra days here if you have the time! It is a very interesting place and well worth some “non-wine” tourism too! We can assist you with booking additional hotel nights if you want.
Book This Tour
You book by contacting Britt Karlsson, BKWine:
- phone: +33 1 58 88 04 66 or +33 6 80 45 35 70 (+33 is the country code for France)
- email: info at bkwine dot com
- skype: bkwine
More on our wine tours
About the wine producers and wineries we visit
Our aim is that you shall experience some of the best and most interesting that the wine region has to offer, both of wine and food.
We put a big effort into finding and creating outstanding winery visits. Often it will not be the most “famous” and internationally well-known wineries that will give you the best and most unique experiences…
It is usually when you get to meet the winemaker or winery owner himself (or often herself) that the visits become really exciting. And perhaps we even meet the whole family at the estate.
You start discussing and start to understand what it is they do and why in the winery and in the vineyard. Maybe we will also have lunch in the winery or at their home. Need we say we invariably have private wine tastings at the wineries?
That is why our trips are not “jam packed” with visits at wineries. Nevertheless we often run short of time since the discussions – and the wine tastings – can easily become very engaging…
Our wine country tours typically include a mix of small family producers, exclusive boutique wineries and larger internationally well-known wine estates, all selected with great care so that it will give you a unique experience of the people and of the behind-the-scenes in the winery and a good understanding of the wine district’s characteristics, tradition and culture.
At the time of publishing a travel program not all visits have been finalised. We are continuously working on improving the program. The domaines / wineries / châteaux that we visit on a tour may therefore sometimes differ from what was written in the original program. Contact us if you want more details, or if you have any special requests.
On meals: food and gastronomy
Wine and food are intimately linked. That is part of our wine travel philosophy; wine is an integral part of the gastronomy.
A wine tour with BKWine will therefore also be a gastronomic experience.
The meals that are included in a tour with BKWine are on a gourmet level and of very high standard.
Sometimes we will have a meal with a winemaker, perhaps in the wine cellar or at the winery, or even in their home. This is a unique experience that is generally not open to other visitors to wineries. It is an occasion to experience exciting combinations of food and wine while discussing with the people who made the wine.
Sometimes we will have a luxurious meal at a gourmet restaurant. At other times it may be not at a prestigious luxury address but at a local restaurant selected for its presentation of local gastronomic specialities, its atmosphere and its quality – a place where locals go. Or perhaps it will be a buffet lunch made at home by the winemaker and his wife. In all cases we want to show you local gastronomic specialities and the local food and wine pairings.
Do not expect a picnic with salad and sausage from the supermarket and wine in plastic mugs… Think instead of a wine-and-dine experience with specially composed menu with three or four courses and delicious wines.
A wine tour with BKWine is also a culinary experience both for the wine enthusiast and for the gourmet. A gourmet wine tour!
Why travel with BKWine?
We are experts and specialists in wine and food tours and wine tourism, but also in wine in a broader perspective.
No other tour operator has a comparable knowledge and experience of wine, wine regions, wine tours and gourmet travel as BKWine.
We have organised hundreds of wine and food tours. This is what we love to do, because it is fun and exciting. What we want more than anything is to share with you all these wonderful experiences.
It does not matter if you are “a total novice” on wine and food or if you have a life-long experience in the wine sector. We will give you a very special experience, in a way that no other tour operator can do.
We write in specialised wine magazines and one of our books has won the prize as best wine book in the world. We are regularly called on to be part of judging panels in wine competitions.
We personally visit some 300 vineyards every year. We have organised several hundreds of wine and food tours with an experience going back more than twenty years. We are invited as speakers at wine tourism and culinary touring conferences.
We choose our tour destinations and winery visits with great care. Not because a winery happens to be carrying a “famous name” but because they will give our guests — you! — a unique and special experience. You may be looking for a short wine week-end holiday or a longer wine vacation; in all cases you can be confident that you will get a top quality tour, an experience of a lifetime. Or at least one that will last you until the next time you come on a wine tour with BKWine. Many of our travellers are returning clients.
A wine and food tour with BKWine is always guided by a knowledgeable and experienced BKWine guide and tour manager, someone who knows the ins and outs of wine, of the local gastronomy, of the culture and who speaks the language.
Some accolades we at BKWine and our wine and food tours have received:
- “World’s Top Wine Tours” by Travel + Leisure Magazine, the world’s biggest travel magazine
- “Best wine tasting holidays”, AOL Travel’s list of top wine tours
- “Recommended Wine Tours” by Munskankarna, the world’s biggest wine tasting and wine appreciation association
- “World’s Best Wine Book for Professionals” as well as “Best Wine Book of the Year” in Sweden 2010 for the book The Creation of a Wine
- “Best wine book for Professionals” again in 2012 in Sweden, as well as silver, runner-up, as “World’s Best Educational Wine Book” for the book Wine and the Environment
- “Wine Personality of the Year” by Munskankarna, the world’s biggest wine tasting and wine appreciation association
- On the Wine Media Power List by Wine Business International Magazine (Britt, 2012)
Read more on why to choose BKWine for a wine and food tour.
Read more on what previous travellers have said about our tours.
Our groups are always small. The group size may vary, sometimes maximum 8, sometimes 20, but always of a modest size (we do not do “minimum 20, maximum 45”). Check the details in each program. This is important since it guarantees a quality experience and a personal welcome at the wineries we visit.
BKWine is a Swedish registered travel organiser. BKWine has a bonded travel guarantee deposit so that you can feel safe when booking with us. We fully comply with European and Swedish travel guarantee regulations. British travellers may be familiar with the ABTA (Association of British Travel Agents) protection scheme which is a similar model. BKWine follows the code of conduct and financial safeguards defined by the Swedish Consumer Agency and The Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency (“Kammarkollegiet”, with a history dating back to 1539). Read more about this in our Booking Terms and Conditions.
Read the BKWine Booking Terms and Conditions here. They are important to you!
You organise your travel independently to the destination for most of our tours but on location we take care of everything.
For more inspiration
Read our wine travel blog. And also:
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- There are thousands of pictures from previous trips on BKWine Photography
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We also do custom wine and food tours if you want to choose different dates or if you want something different than what we currently offer on our scheduled tours – for individuals, companies, professionals, wine tastings clubs etc.