2017 Grand Cru Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair


The vineyard dates from 1931 although inevitably some of the vines had to be replanted after the war. Thibault explains he feels Richebourg can walk a tricky line between power and elegance. He says he finds it can even be a bit blocky when young - but for Thibault the whole bunch element really helps join up the conflicting elements you can get in Richebourg, and this year he's included 30% Whole bunch - his highest level ever. Tasted after the Les St Georges - this impresses with more power, more grip, more intensity. Ripe fruit in the middle heavy with dark and sweet berries. Good, juicy acidity and the fine tannins soften on the finish. Nicely sculpted fruit with some ping and push. Its all here and this is an impressive, sophisticated Grand Cru. Drinking range: 2023 - 2032L&S(Nov 2018)

* This is a pre-shipment/primeur offer. All orders are accepted under the TERMS of this offer which differ from the terms of the rest of the site.

Bright garnet. Herbal nose. Sweet start but a bit confected. Not the purest, most relaxed wine. Just a little stewed on the (rather sudden) end. Drinking range: 2024 - 2033 Rating: 16++ Jancis Robinson MW OBE - 2019)

(from a .55 ha parcel; 30% whole cluster but without the central stem). An exuberantly spicy nose of black cherry, violet, lilac and Asian-style tea is trimmed in a touch of wood toast. There is once again good detail and minerality to the quite muscular and powerful flavors that are shaped by fine but very firm tannins that make their presence felt on the youthfully austere, compact and impressively long finish. Patience strongly advised. Drinking range: 2032 - Rating: 92-94 Allen Meadows, 2019)

Thibault Liger-Belair used the highest ever amount of whole bunches in this wine in 2017 - 30%. It's an impressive old-vine cuvée made from a parcel planted in 1931. Less toasty than the 2016 was at the same stage, this has lots of plush, textured fruit, some peppery spice and nuanced tannins. A lick of chalky minerality freshens the finish. Drinking range: 2022 - 2028 Rating: 95-95 Tim Atkin MW - Decanter(Nov 2018)

Thibault Liger-Belair has two hectares in Les Saint Georges, the vineyard which gives Nuits the rest of its name, and 60 ares out of a total of 4 hectares of the Grand Cru Richebourg, as well as a good holding in the Clos Vougeot and some well-placed village wines. The vineyards are a good start, but it is Thibault himself who has catapulted this domaine straight into the very top echelons of Côte de Nuits domaines from his first vintage (2002). Thibault was trained as an oenologist but first worked as a wine buyer. He has come to wine making with a wide experience of wine buying, and has had the advantage of having discussed wine-making for many years, with the benefit of his oenological background, with some of the best winemakers of the world. Viticulture is biodynamic (since 2005), yields low but not ludicrously low, everything is pragmatic, so that he should be doing just what is necessary and no more. He uses 40-50% new wood maximum. The wines are bright, pure, focused, aromatic and elegant without lacking anything in the way of stuffing.


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