Cycling the Burgundy Wine Route – France, September 2017

Bonjour la Bourgogne!

On September 29th, 2017 we headed out for the second part of our self-guided bike tour, which was the Burgundy Wine Route. We would cycle from Dijon to Beaune. (the Alsace wine region had been the first part of this trip, see previous post for more detail).Image result for map of france burgundy wine route

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In planning for this Burgundy Wine Route we had dealt with a bike tour company called, Bike Tours. This company arranged for our lodging, bikes, bags, GPS and luggage transport to each destination. The difficulty level we decided to go with was level 3 (out of 5) which was described by the company as “rolling, hilly terrain”. It was approx. 40 km of cycling each day. We determined our own pace and we made a lot of stops along the way. This tour highlighted the wines of Burgundy and its cuisine.  🍷😊For this part of the trip, we decided to choose the deluxe package which gave us upgraded accommodations and included two dinners at the Château de Gilly in Vougeot.

The vineyards of Burgundy is a UNESCO protected wine region. It’s obvious that they have a unique relationship with their food and wines.  It was a special treat for us to spend some time here and be able to savour some of the region’s finest cuisine and some spectacular wines.

Here is the list of hotels included with this package:

Sept. 29th & 30th
Grand Hotel La Cloche  Dijon⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Oct. 1st & 2nd
Chateau de Gilly- Vougeot⭐⭐⭐⭐

Oct. 3rd &4th
Hotel de la Poste  –Beaune  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

We arrived in Dijon by train from Colmar.  We spent two days in Dijon and it was the starting point of our self-guided bike tour.

We met up with the local rep of “Bike Tours” and he provided us with all the maps, info, bikes, GPS, helmets, bags, etc.

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The hotel booked for us in Dijon was a 5-star hotel, Grand Hotel La Cloche. . It was centrally located and staying here to visit Dijon was a treat.

On the first evening there, we ate at Le Sauvage restaurant. A nice cozy restaurant hidden down a small alleyway. The menu is based on a flame grill.  The wine list is extensive. I must admit I do enjoy those burgundy reds ❤️🍷. With this beautiful wine, I wanted to treat myself to something unique for my meal. I decided to go with pigeon & foie gras       ” filets de pigeon entièrement désossés et leur escalope de foie gras” My husband wasn’t as convinced 😊. Oh well, he missed out as it was absolutely delicious. I often think about this meal and my wish is that I will be able to have it again someday.

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Restaurant Le Sauvage

Of course the next day we stopped to buy a few “dijon mustard” products that we enjoyed on our sandwiches for the remainder of our trip.

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Famous Dijon Mustard

After spending two days in Dijon we left the city on our bikes and started cycling la Route des Grand Crus. Our first destination was the small village of Vougeot. We were so excited to get on our bikes. Exploring this region on bikes made us appreciate it so much more. It was very relaxing until we got lost😂. All part of these adventures and you do get back on track, eventually.

In Burgundy, you seem to go back in time. Everything seems to have been left just the way it was hundreds of years ago. Because the land is so valuable here the villages do not expand with new construction. The land is passed on through generations. Who would want to build a shopping mall here anyway? As you cycle along the countryside we were so close to all the vineyards and châteaux it felt a bit surreal.  Since our trip to Burgundy, we often say to each other “when can we go back there?

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La Côte d’Or
We are so excited about our arrival to Vougeot as we knew that for the next couple of days we were going to be staying at the  Château de Gilly.
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Château de Gilly

Life at the Château- 🏰

The two dinners we had at   “Clos Prieur”, the restaurant du Château de Gilly were amazing. The most memorable was the boeuf bourguignon and the amazing wines of course.
It’s becoming apparent now that we’ve done a few of these self-guided bike tours, that these bike companies truly know where to send you for rewarding dining experiences.
While here in Vougeot we had the opportunity to do some wine tasting and enjoy some of these beautiful burgundy reds and whites. We spent a wonderful afternoon at La Maison Vougeot and enjoyed learning about grape variety (cépage) and what makes this wine region so well known and respected across the globe, We were introduced to three beautiful wines; Clos de Vougeot blanc, Clos de Vougeot rouge Grand Cru and Clos de la Roche, 1er Grand Cru.
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La Maison Vougeot
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Amazing burgundy wines
The next morning it’s time to depart from this memorable place and continue on our route,  the next destination being Beaune.
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Bike shelter at the Château
We had such a beautiful day cycling the countryside and entering small villages on our way towards Beaune.

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Village Nuits Saint-Georges 
On our arrival at Beaune we check-in at our hotel,  Hotel de la Poste. An older but very nice hotel in a central location.

Beaune is a city where you see a lot of “Maison des Vins” . This is certainly where you can find and purchase some of Burgundy’s finest wines. If only we could bring them back to Canada.

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Beaune
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Beaune

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In Beaune, we were introduced to this nice restaurant, le p’tit Paradis.  Here once again we had a wonderful meal. These small, out of the way places never fail to please us.

 

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Le P’tit Paradis restaurant, Beaune

You certainly cannot visit Beaune without visiting the Hospice de Beaune. It was built around 1443 to care for the sick. It is still renowned for its 60 hectares wine estate, producing prestigious wines that are sold at an auction on the third Sunday in November each year.

 

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Hospice de Beaune
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Hospice de Beaune

 

Well, as they say, all good things must come to an end. On our last day in Beaune, we were certainly sad when we left our bikes at the hotel and left behind this beautiful region. We will be back!

AU REVOIR LA BOURGOGNE, A LA PROCHAINE!

 

Image result for two wine glasses cheers

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