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Puligny-Montrachet : journal of a village in Burgundy / Simon Loftus.

By: Loftus, Simon.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: London, England : Daunt books, 2019Copyright date: ©2019Description: 376 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm.Content type: text | still image Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9781911547488 (paperback); 1911547488 (paperback).Subject(s): Wine and wine making -- France -- Puligny-Montrachet | Puligny-Montrachet (France) -- Social life and customsDDC classification: 641.22094442 Summary: For more than two hundred and fifty years wine lovers have claimed that the stony vineyard of Le Montrachet, which straddles the boundary between the villages of Puligny and Chassagne, produces the greatest dry white wine in the world. But few of those who search out this famous wine, as the grandest expression of the Chardonnay grape, take the trouble to explore the place itself. Life in Puligny is shaped by the rhythms of the agricultural year: the bonfires of the winter prunings, the Feast of St Vincent, and the exhausting, exuberant pandemonium of the harvest, when the population of the village trebles with the arrival of the visiting pickers.
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

Combining a history of the village with a detailed study of the vines, this is a fascinating snapshot of a way of life that is disappearing.

First published in 1992 by Ebury Press.

For more than two hundred and fifty years wine lovers have claimed that the stony vineyard of Le Montrachet, which straddles the boundary between the villages of Puligny and Chassagne, produces the greatest dry white wine in the world. But few of those who search out this famous wine, as the grandest expression of the Chardonnay grape, take the trouble to explore the place itself. Life in Puligny is shaped by the rhythms of the agricultural year: the bonfires of the winter prunings, the Feast of St Vincent, and the exhausting, exuberant pandemonium of the harvest, when the population of the village trebles with the arrival of the visiting pickers.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Loftus, a wine merchant and author of articles on wine, writes about the world's most celebrated dry white wine and the people of the tiny village where it is produced. There is some history here, but Loftus takes us through a year in the village and introduces us to many of the vintners and other people there. We learn of some of the problems of winemaking and the rivalries in the village. It helps if one is interested in wine and in particular the wines of Burgundy, but the characters in the village are fascinating in themselves. There are 34 photographs by the author and appendixes of the wine appellations, vintages, tastings, and producers. Recommended for general collections and special collections on wine.-- George M. Jenks, Bucknell Univ., Lewisburg, Pa. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Review

Wine is at the center of this intriguing study of a rural French village. For some 700 years, we are told, work, family life and society in PulignyMontrachet have revolved around the production of its noble white burgundies. Loftus, a British wine merchant and writer ( Anatomy of the Wine Trade ), demonstrates an intimate knowledge of Puligny's history, people, vines, soils, climates, crus, grandes domaines and various plagues that have decimated its vineyards. He also supplies authoritative descriptions of the celebrations, feuds and despairs of the vintners. Although Loftus fortifies his discussion with much technical wine talk, there is nothing technical about his love for the village and its vines. He writes feelingly about the infinitesimal climatic shifts that can make the difference between a great burgundy and a poor one; about the beauty of an 18th-century land-register that details exactly the houses, trees, vineyard subdivisions and ownership of each fraction of land; and about his own passion for ``the scent of those white burgundies (a mixture of fresh straw and ripe peaches . . . suggestions of woodsmoke, of honey and of freshly sawn oak).'' Photos not seen by PW. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus Book Review

Saucy guide to and social history of a wine-making village in France, first published in France in 1988 and then in Britain in 1992. Loftus is a wine merchant, hotelier, restaurateur, and writer of wine catalogs as well of as other books published overseas. Millionaires from around the world, Loftus tells us, vie for tiny allocations of the fabulous, hideously expensive white burgundies of Puligny-Montrachet--wines whose scent is ``a mixture of fresh straw and ripe peaches, an earthy intensity underlying the elegance, suggestions of woodsmoke, of honey and of freshly sawn oak.'' The small, stony vineyards that produce the rival burgundies of the area were first cultivated by monks many centuries ago. The characters of these wines, Loftus says, stem as much from the complexities in temperament of the owners as from variations in the pungency of the soil. The author, a passionate taster, finds infinite gradations in the ever-shifting flavors in vintages (``Ramonet...reminded me of rich quince and apple pie, complete with cloves''). A late burst of sunshine before harvesting, he says, can lend a wine serious promise. Judging by Loftus, rivalry between the local vineyards of small, sleepy Puligny and even smaller nearby Chassagne runs deep, with a peculiarly French animus, though much of Puligny's produce is owned and managed by outsiders while Chassagne is still owned by locals. A year in Burgundy with Loftus, when set beside a year in Provence with Peter Mayle, is like comparing a splendid, quite noble vintage to dreary table wine--Mayle lacks acidity, richness of character, and fruitiness. We enter many cellars here--though the cellars in Puligny are above ground because of the very high water table--meet the village folk, and follow the year's rhythms and yields, with sharply etched portraits of landowners and townspeople alike. Lofty but fun, with 34 very fine, personal photographs taken by the author.