Five wines for your 2024 Mediterranean charter

Published 25 March 2024

Max de Beaufort-Suchlick, Charter Manager, offers his insight into the smart wine choices to sip on your charter yacht this summer. He rates these lesser-known vineyards and alternative vintages for when you want to try something refreshingly different - and always delicious...


Talk to the Burgess expert

Max knows wine. With seven years experience as a wine supplier to superyachts, three of which were spent at one of London's leading Burgundy specialists, Max is the Burgess expert to talk of terroir, palate and the wine regions to watch...

italian sparkling wine

Franciacorta

'While Champagne is the undisputed champion of sparkling wine, the region of Franciacorta continues to fly under the radar and is considered Italy’s answer to Champagne. In blind tastings, top examples from Franciacorta can wipe the floor with a host of non-vintage Champagnes with far loftier reputations - and price tags.

'Situated in Lombardy in northern Italy, wine has been produced here since the 12th century but only as recently as the 1960s found its true calling in the form of "traditional method", bottle-fermented sparkling wine. Franciacorta tends to be drier, softer and fruitier than Champagne, with Chardonnay making up the lion’s share in the blend. The rules that govern production here are even more stringent than in Champagne, helping ensure a solid base level of quality.'

TRY

  • Bellavista Vittotio Moretti Riserva Extra Brut
  • Ca’ del Bosco Annamaria Clementi
Sparkling wine from Franciacorta is a drier, softer, fruiter alternative to Champagne
chablis alternative

Albariño

'While Chablis owes its distinctive mineral-driven flavour profile to the Kimmeridgean limestone on which the region sits, the Albariños of Rías Baixas in Galicia are the perfect Spanish counterpart.

'With a similar vibrancy and citrus zip to Chablis, the influence of the Atlantic Ocean lends Albariño a slight salinity on the palate, establishing its reputation as the ultimate accompaniment to seafood. Their sheer drinkability makes these wines hard to resist in their youth, but the best examples will further develop in complexity and weight over 10-plus years.'

TRY

  • Leirana Finca Genoveva, Forjas del Salnés
  • Pazo Señorans
Grapes grown by the sea can lend a subtle salinity to the palate
Quality white burgundy

Chassagne-Montrachet

'When it comes to white Burgundy from Côte de Beaune, the wines of Puligny-Montrachet and Meursault tend to hog the limelight on charter guests’ preference sheets. Waiting in the wings is Chassagne-Montrachet, where quality has skyrocketed over the past 15 years or so. 

'Historically a predominantly red wine producing village, Chardonnay is now the favoured grape, accounting for around two thirds of vineyard plantings. The village possesses some of the finest terroir in Burgundy, including three Grands Crus (Meursault, by comparison, has none). Stylistically, the wines cover a broad spectrum from leaner to richer depending on the domaine, but in general terms they sit as a happy medium between Meursault and Puligny-Montrachet.'

TRY

  • Bernard Moreau, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru Morgeot
  • Morey-Coffinet, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru en Remilly
Chassagne-Montrachet's style tends to sit in the middle ground between Meursault and Puligny-Montrachet 
a new chapter in wine

Sicily

'Sicily has been steadily building a reputation as a wine region and now is easily on a par with some of its more famous mainland cousins. A far cry from the bulk production of the past, trailblazing producers such as Passopisciaro and Frank Cornelissen have helped the island achieve its full potential in terms of quality, today boasting no fewer than 23 Denominazioni di Origine (DOC) and one DOCG. 

'Two of the best-known are Etna DOC and Cerasuolo di Vittoria DOCG. Etna’s altitude allows for the Nerello Mascalese red grape to express a delicate, almost Burgundian quality in some cases. Meanwhile, the lower, hotter climate of Cerasuolo di Vittoria is the perfect match for Nero d’Avola, producing reds of greater structure and depth.'

TRY

  • Passopisciaro Contrada G
  • Frank Cornelissen Munjebel Rosso
Vineyards on the slopes of Etna tend to produce grapes with a delicate quality
super tuscan contender

Ornellaia

'The popularity of Super Tuscan wines shows no sign of slowing, with an increasing number of Tuscan producers trying their hand at blending grape varieties beyond those native to the region. While the wonderful, structured Sassicaia is the most sought-after for charter guests, with its iconic star on the label, Ornellaia represents excellent comparative value and is often overlooked.

'One of the main differences between the two is the blend of grape varieties; the addition of Merlot lends Ornellaia a certain plushness. Not only can it hold its own in a head-to-head tasting, Ornellaia tends to be far more approachable in its youth than Sassicaia, which has a tendency to shut down for several years before blossoming 10-15 years later.'

TRY

  • 2015, 2010 & 2006 Ornellaia
Plush Ornellaia holds its own next to better-known Tuscan reds

Book your summer charter

If you are feeling inspired, combine a tour of local vineyards with your next charter. We have fantastic yachts still with summer availability in the Mediterranean. Explore your options for under 50m or 50m and over, or venture further afield...

Remember to request a few of Max's wine choices on your preference list as well.

Book a Burgess charter to explore the Mediterranean this summer

To find out more about Burgess’ yachts for charter and yachts for sale, please contact a Burgess broker. Alternatively, get in touch with one of our offices directly: London, Monaco, New York, Miami, Singapore or all other locations.

- Yachts, prices and availability are correct at the time of publication.

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