2016 Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair Richebourg Grand Cru

SKU #1399764 94-96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2016 Richebourg Grand Cru includes 30% whole cluster fruit, the highest at the domaine ever, which Thibaut said combined all the elements of the vineyard together. There was just a slight reduction on the nose, though underneath lies intense blackberry and raspberry fruit, hints of truffle and cedar and then later subtle white flower scents. This seems to gather momentum in the glass, and it fans out beautifully on the regal finish. It will clearly require some time in bottle, so find a berth for this in your cellar and then forget about it. Not forever. Just say 8 to 10 years for it to show its pedigree. (NM)  (12/2017)

95 points Allen Meadows - Burghound

 A strikingly floral-suffused and perfumed nose offers up a mix of violet, lavender and rose petal that adds elegance to the panoply of spicy dark fruit aromas. There is an almost painful intensity to the beautifully well-detailed big-bodied and superbly mineral-driven flavors that possess a gorgeous mouthfeel, indeed the mid-palate is almost lacy, that gives way to a wall of tannin on the serious, powerful and breathtakingly long finish. This stunner of a Richebourg is also going to require extended keeping as it's very, very tightly wound today.  (1/2019)

92-95 points Vinous

 (Liger-Belair lost 40% of the crop here, noting that mildew was more of an issue than frost in Vosne-Romanée in 2016; vinified with 30% whole clusters, the highest percentage to date for this cuvée): Bright ruby-red red. Very expressive and less tight on the nose than usual (due to the stem influence?), offering sweet aromas of boysenberry, cassis and licorice. Compellingly sweet and sappy, showing considerable sweetness leavened by a saline quality. Not as unrelievedly black as the last couple of wines, and a bit less dominated by its structure than it appeared to be in barrel in late 2016. Finishes with terrific breadth, substantial totally ripe tannins and a touch of chocolatey ripeness. Surprisingly approachable today but probably deceptively so. (ST)  (1/2018)

K&L Notes

95 points Tim Atkin (MW): "Featuring the highest ever percentage of whole bunches (40%), this entirely new oak aged red is quite closed at the moment, with lots of smoky, toasty flavours. There’s plenty of spice and fruit weight too, but the overall wine needs time to come together in bottle. Based on previous vintages, it will. 2026-36." (01/2018) 92-96pts Jasper Morris Inside Burgundy: "Five barrels instead of eight this year. One third whole bunch for the first time. Rich dense black purple. Heady stuff while also quite restrained. Then in the mouth the fruit absolutely bursts forwards before coming up against some oak tannins. The intensity is just about there, wait and see for the sense of nobility which Richebourg should induce." (01/2019)

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Price: $599.99

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Pinot Noir

- One of France's most legendary grapes and the grape that earned Burgundy its reputation. The parent of varietals like Pinot Gris/Grigio and Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir is blue to violet to indigo in color with relatively thin skins, and it is said to have been cultivated in France for more than 2,000 years. At its best, Pinot Noir creates elegant wines that are filled with primary red fruit aromas and flavors while young, revealing with an array of secondary characteristics like earth, smoke, violet, truffle and game with age. The varietal is also known, perhaps better than any, for its ability to translate terroir, or a sense of place. While the best Pinot Noir still comes from Burgundy, it is being produced with increasing success in cooler climates around the world. In France, it is part of the trifecta of grapes that can go into Champagne, and it is also grown in Alsace, Irancy, Jura, Savoie, Lorraine and Sancerre. Outside of France it is produced under the names Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder in Italy's mountainous regions, as Spätburgunder in Germany and as Blauburgunder in Austria. In the US, Pinot Noir has found suitable growing conditions in the cooler parts of California, including Carneros, the Russian River Valley, the Anderson Valley, the Sonoma Coast, Monterey County, the Santa Lucia Highlands and Santa Barbara County, as well as in Oregon's Willamette Valley. In recent years, New Zealand has demonstrated its ability to interpret this hard-to-grow varietal, with successful bottlings coming from careful and attentive growers in Central Otago, Martinborough and Canterbury. Chile is also an up-and-coming region for Pinot Noir, creating fresh, fruit-forward, early-drinking and affordable Pinots from the coastal Casablanca Valley and the Limari Valley.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.


- The province of eastern France, famous for its red wines produced from Pinot Noir and its whites produced from Chardonnay. (Small of amounts of Gamay and Aligoté are still grown, although these have to be labeled differently.) The most famous part of the region is known as the Côte d'Or (the Golden Slope). It is divided into the Côte de Beaune, south of the town of Beaune (famous principally for its whites), and the Côte de Nuits, North of Beaune (home of the most famous reds). In addition, the Côte Chalonnaise and the Mâconnais are important wine growing regions, although historically a clear level (or more) below the Côte d'Or. Also include by some are the regions of Chablis and Auxerrois, farther north.
Specific Appellation:

Vosne Romanee

- This is the top of the Côte de Nuits. Home to the famous Grand Crus of Romanée, Romanée-Conti, Romanée St. Vivant, Richebourg, La Tâche, Echézeaux, Grands Echézeaux, and La Grand Rue, this village really makes you realize how much extraordinary wine can come from a tiny place. This is the home of quintessential Burgundy-deep, rich, refined and powerful.