Olivier Morin, Bourgogne Chitry “Olympe”
Olivier Morin, Bourgogne Chitry “Olympe”

Olivier Morin, Bourgogne Chitry “Olympe”

Burgundy, France 2019 (750mL)
Regular price$32.00
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Olivier Morin, Bourgogne Chitry “Olympe”

In the annals of over-achievement, this tense and textured Bourgogne Chitry from Olivier Morin will go down as one of the year’s top white Burgundy values. If the name Chitry (she-TREE) had you scouring a map of Burgundy, don’t be embarrassed—plenty of trained sommeliers would need to do the same thing—just make sure to remember it! Located about seven miles from Chablis in the northwestern reaches of the Bourgogne AOC, Chitry is one of those “next-door-neighbor” appellations we love so much.

In this case, it’s the same terroir (chalky Kimmeridgian limestone; cool climate) as Chablis, just with way less name recognition, meaning a $32 bottle of white Burgundy that doesn’t merely over-achieve—it shocks. One of the many things that blew us away was how much classic Chablisienne minerality and tension it displayed in the hot, generously ripe 2019 vintage. There’s luscious Chardonnay fruit here, in layers no less, but also the kind of mineral/acidic nerve that makes you sit up a little straighter in your chair. This might be what they call a “modest” appellation, but this is one self-assured, downright boastful white Burgundy. Stock up on this!

Now that we know where Chitry is—clustered alongside other value hunting grounds like Saint-Bris, Irancy, and Côtes d’Auxerre—let’s get to Olivier Morin. In 1992, he left the music business to take over his family’s 30-acre domaine, essentially “trading in his turntables for a tractor.” Morin and his wife, Nelly, farm the vineyards organically and ferment the wines using only ambient yeasts while using the least amount of sulfur possible. Trite as it may sound, you really can taste this in the wine: There’s a palpable energy to it that can only come from clean farming and minimalist winemaking.

Morin is also blessed with some prime older vines, which, for this bottling, range in age from 15-60 years and reach altitudes of 600 meters. For “Olympe,” fruit from mostly south-facing parcels is hand-harvested and “direct pressed” to older French oak casks for fermentation. The wine is aged an impressive 18 months in those used casks, which lends creaminess and depth to the texture without masking the fruit with lots of vanilla or other oak-derived notes.

The result is a judiciously balanced Chardonnay of serious substance and mouth-watering freshness. In the glass, it pours a luminous straw gold, with luxurious Chardonnay aromas of yellow apple, lemon peel, acacia flowers, crushed oyster shells, wet stones, and a hint of crème fraîche. It is leaning toward medium-plus in body, and I wouldn’t be exaggerating when I say it approaches Premier/Grand Cru Chablis in quality. Yes, that’s amazing for $32, and should you decide to lose a few bottles in the cellar for a couple more years, you’ll likely be richly rewarded. There’s so much this will pair with it’s hard to settle on just one thing, which is just what you want from your new house white. Cheers!

Olivier Morin, Bourgogne Chitry “Olympe”




Enjoying the greatest wines of Beaujolais starts, as it usually does, with the lay of the land. In Beaujolais, 10 localities have been given their own AOC (Appellation of Controlled Origin) designation. They are: Saint Amour; Juliénas; Chénas; Moulin-à Vent; Fleurie; Chiroubles; Morgon; Régnié; Côte de Brouilly; and Brouilly.

Southwestern France


Bordeaux surrounds two rivers, the Dordogne and Garonne, which intersect north of the city of Bordeaux to form the Gironde Estuary, which empties into the Atlantic Ocean. The region is at the 45th parallel (California’s Napa Valley is at the38th), with a mild, Atlantic-influenced climate enabling the maturation of late-ripening varieties.

Central France

Loire Valley

The Loire is France’s longest river (634 miles), originating in the southerly Cévennes Mountains, flowing north towards Paris, then curving westward and emptying into the Atlantic Ocean near Nantes. The Loire and its tributaries cover a huge swath of central France, with most of the wine appellations on an east-west stretch at47 degrees north (the same latitude as Burgundy).

Northeastern France


Alsace, in Northeastern France, is one of the most geologically diverse wine regions in the world, with vineyards running from the foothills of theVosges Mountains down to the Rhine River Valley below.

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