I have just spoken to Jean-Louis Moissenet Bonnard – President of the Pommard Vintners Association who gave me the latest update on the Pommard Grand Cru “dossier”.
Things seemed to be going well for the two plots or “climats” as they are known over here in Burgundy (Les Epenots and Les Rugiens). The CRINAO (regional controlled appellations authority) presided by Damien Gachot gave a favourable reply to the Pommard dossier, until the Union des Grands Cru and the Union des Maisons de Négoce blocked the validation, asking for an enquiry to be opened as to the legitimacy of the “dossier”, believing that by accepting these new future Grand Crus (there are only 33 in existance), this will incite many other villages to put forward potential “climats” for evaluation, thus diluting the exceptional quality of existing Grand Crus
Objectively, there are several 1er Cru plots (the level below Grand Crus) that merit Grand Cru status, but as you can imagine there are “political” and “economic” stakes and becoming a Grand Cru immediately increases the price of the bottle and increases the value of the land.
Arguments in Pommard’s favour are numerous, not just concerning the quality of the “terroir” but also the reputation of the village – it is the first Burgundy village to be mentioned by 80% of foreigners. Arguments against are also justifable with Burgundy wine becoming unhealthily expensive and could soon see itself priced out of the market. More villages having higher priced wines would not help this situation.
Jean-Louis believes that, although the unions have been given 1 year to prove their arguments, they will not be able to block progression beyond that period.