In 1920, Camille Rodier penned his ouvrage on the wine, culture and vineyards or la Côte d’Or. He would go on to write several other books including a celebrated work on the Clos de Vougeot and co-founded the Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin
In this book, he combined the works of Morelot (1831) Lavalle (1855) as well as the work by Mnsr Danguy and Mnsr Aubertin (1892). Notably, he included a good number of crus which were left out by the previous historians/authors. A strong point of this book is that he did quite in opening up the Côte d’Or to those outside of the region and indeed outside of France.
While the other works focused on the history of the vineyards and those working the vines as well as the commercial aspects (especially Lavalle on this point), Rodier wrote this book as an open letter, an invitation to cone and explore this region which he knew well and loved even more.
There are 10 fold out maps, which dissect the appellations in equal parts. The use of color illustrations adds a beautiful sense of context to understanding the richness of the region’s history. I still have much to read but there are already quite fascinating things I’ve stumbled upon. One interesting piece is due to his inclusion of more crus (largely those which are forgotten/absorbed/overlooked climats) which have in this book been classified. In Morey, there are quite a few surprises with the whole of Les Chaffots and other (now classed) Premiers Crus being placed on the top rank alongside Clos St Denis, Clos des Lambrays, Clos de la Roche and others while favorites of mine such as Bussière and Clos Sorbès as being of lower rank. Previously, as an example Les Chaffots (this cru stood out to me as we source grapes from Les Chaffots 1er Cru) went unnoticed in Lavalle’s 1855 work which has largely been upheld in our current classification.
Well, I need to get back to more reading and chores.