2012 Aloxe-Corton, La Toppe au Vert, 1er Cru, Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair

2012 Aloxe-Corton, La Toppe au Vert, 1er Cru, Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair

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2012 Aloxe-Corton, La Toppe au Vert, 1er Cru, Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair

Description

Thibault is enthusiastic about his wines from the hill of Corton in 2012. This Aloxe certainly demonstrates a pure and sensual dark red fruit, with cherries and plums. The texture is seamless and the flavours persist admirably on the palate.
Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director

Thibault’s two domaines, based in Moulin à Vent and Nuits-St Georges, both returned paltry yields of 16 hl/ha in 2012. Among the Côte d’Or appellations, the Hautes Côtes, Nuits and Gevrey-Chambertin suffered in particular. All of which is a great shame, given the quality of the wines which have been made. Even where Thibault purchases grapes (Aloxe-Corton and Chambolle- Musigny), Thibault makes the major decisions in the vineyard management. His own vines are farmed biodynamically, with ploughing by horse.

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About this WINE

Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair

Domaine Thibault Liger-Belair

Thibault Liger-Belair is cousin to Vicomte Liger Belair of Vosne Romanée. In 2001 he took over an old family property in Nuits St Georges, taking back the vines which had been contracted out to various share croppers, and leased a cuverie just down the road. The family jewels (his branch) consist of Richebourg, Clos de Vougeot and Nuits St Georges Les St Georges, to which he has added further vineyards and a few additional cuvées made from purchased grapes.

The vines are now certified organic and farmed biodynamically, with horses used to plough the vineyards where possible. The grapes are rigorously sorted on a table de tri, then destalked and fermented without much punching down or pumping over.  They will be racked once during the elevage, but Thibault is not afraid of reductive flavours at this stage which, he feels, adds to the eventual substance and complexity of the wine. The oak regime is not to exceed 50% new barrels but also not to use any barrels more than three years old. The natural style of Thibault’s wines is plump and full-bodied, though the benefits of his farming methods seem to be bringing a more mineral aspect to the fruit as well.

The natural style of Thibault’s wines is plump and full-bodied, though the benefits of his farming methods seem to be bringing a more mineral aspect to the fruit as well.

Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director and author of the award-winning Inside Burgundy comprehensive handbook.

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Aloxe Corton

Aloxe Corton

These two Grand Cru vineyards, Corton and Corton-Charlemagne, lie astride three villages at the northern end of the Côte de Beaune: Ladoix, Aloxe-Corton and Pernand-Vergelesses. The main body of the hill of Corton faces due south, with an extended flank exposed to the east, and another facing westwards. The white wines mostly come from west and south-west expositions, along with a narrow band around the top of the hill.

The Emperor Charlemagne owned vines here in the eighth century, and legend has it that his wife insisted he planted white grapes so as not to spill red wine down his beard and clothes. Corton-Charlemagne is always white and there is also a theoretical Grand Cru appellation called, simply, Charlemagne, which is never used. Corton is almost entirely red but there are a few white wines too.

Ladoix is a rarely-seen appellation, as most wine here are sold as Côte de Beaune Villages. Aloxe-Corton is better-known, but as with Ladoix the best vineyards have been designated as Corton and Corton-Charlemagne.

There are also 25 lieux-dits that may be used on wine labels, together with Corton: Les Bressandes, Les Chaumes, Clos des Meix, Clos du Roi, Les Combes, Le Corton, Les Fiètres, Les Grèves, Les Manguettes, Les Maréchaudes, Le Meix Lallemand, Les Paulands, Les Perrières, Les Pougets (Pougeots), Les Renardes, La Vigne au Saint, Les Basses Mourottes, Les Carrières, Clos des Cortons Faiveley, Les Grandes Lolières, Le Rognet et Corton, La Toppe au Vert and Les Vergennes.
  • 90 hectares of village Aloxe-Corton
  • 38 hectares of Premier Cru Aloxe-Corton
  • 118 hectares of village Ladoix
  • 14 hectares of Premier Cru Ladoix
  • 72 hectares of Corton-Charlemagne. The finest from En Charlemagne (Pernand) and Le Charlemagne (Aloxe)
  • 160 hectares of Corton.  The best from Clos du Roi, Bressandes, Pougets

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Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir

Pinot Noir is probably the most frustrating, and at times infuriating, wine grape in the world. However when it is successful, it can produce some of the most sublime wines known to man. This thin-skinned grape which grows in small, tight bunches performs well on well-drained, deepish limestone based subsoils as are found on Burgundy's Côte d'Or.

Pinot Noir is more susceptible than other varieties to over cropping - concentration and varietal character disappear rapidly if yields are excessive and yields as little as 25hl/ha are the norm for some climats of the Côte d`Or.

Because of the thinness of the skins, Pinot Noir wines are lighter in colour, body and tannins. However the best wines have grip, complexity and an intensity of fruit seldom found in wine from other grapes. Young Pinot Noir can smell almost sweet, redolent with freshly crushed raspberries, cherries and redcurrants. When mature, the best wines develop a sensuous, silky mouth feel with the fruit flavours deepening and gamey "sous-bois" nuances emerging.

The best examples are still found in Burgundy, although Pinot Noir`s key role in Champagne should not be forgotten. It is grown throughout the world with notable success in the Carneros and Russian River Valley districts of California, and the Martinborough and Central Otago regions of New Zealand.

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Reviews

Customer reviews

The Wine Advocate86-88/100

Critic reviews

The Wine Advocate86-88/100
The 2012 Aloxe-Corton 1er Cru La Toppe Au Vert comes from a small 0.31-hectare parcel of vines planted in 1965 that this year produces two barrels. It is located on the Ladoix-Serrigny side and contains a lot of fine clay and limestone. The nose is well-balanced, a little lighter than others but with clean, lifted red cherry and sea spray scents. The palate is feminine, light and fleshy with delicate red berry fruit and a crisp, short finish. This should turn out to be a brisk and breezy Aloxe-Corton to drink over the next decade.
Neal Martin - 30/12/2013 Read more