Visiting Chateau Pommard
When in Burgundy, be sure to visit the great Chateau Pommard. It is one of the more famous and historic wineries in Burgundy and in all of France. We’d arranged a reservation by email a couple of weeks before our scheduled week’s vacation in Burgundy. The cost is 21 Euros ($27) a person. Our group of five had a private guide and tasting. The tour gives a brief history of the Chateau Pommard, a short walk in the vineyards, a cave tour, and the tasting of six wines. Shortly before we’d left for France, the big wine news in the United States was the sale of Chateau Pommard to a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, Michael Baum, for an undisclosed amount. Our guide seemed happy that this American had bought the winery. Word has it that previous owner Maurice Giraud has some health issues and decided it would be best to retire. However, our guide pointed to a group of men getting ready to cycle and told us the man in the yellow shirt was Maurice Giraud.
In our short walk in the vineyard we looked at two side-by-side vineyards only a few meters apart. Typical of Burgundy, the soil makeup of these two vineyards are very different from each other. The base is limestone but the other soil materials are different, and this was quite evident in the cross section display at Pommard.
We tasted through six wines, two whites and four reds. The four reds were all Grand Cru wines (the highest designation in Burgundy), each from a different vintage. They were all outstanding wines and very expensive, making the entrance fee very reasonable. Two negatives, our tour guide bashed the Chateau Patriarche that we had visited the day before. “Their wines are two acidic and not balanced.” Maybe that’s the norm among big name Chateaux. We also felt an uneasy pressure to purchase and ship some wine.
The Pommard courtyard had a fabulous collection of bronze sculptures by Salvador Dali. Our favorite was the Triumphant Angel. Others in the exhibit included Dalinian Dancer, Surrealist Warrior, Horse Saddled with Time, and Woman of Time. This is a temporary exhibit and other exhibits have shown works of Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Joan Miro and Pablo Picasso.