Vosne Romanee Malconsorts is the fast rising star of the 1er crus in the appellation. The regained fame and glory is due to a large change of ownership and a impressive rise in quality among the other existing owners.
Malconsorts is now back to form and has taken its rightful place among the top 1er crus in Vosne-Romanee. So lets take a closer look at the history and the ownership history of this fine 1er cru.
Update 01/07/2014 … Cathiard plot previous owner update
Early history of Vosne-Romanee Malconsorts
Some sources indicate that the Les Malconsorts vineyard was established relatively late – as it was transformed from scrubland to vineyard in 16107. According to the Burgundian etymologist Marie-Hélène Landrieu-Lussigny the name Mal-consorts refers to “a patch of ground covered with thorny brush that is difficult to clear”6. There is however also, according to Allen Meadows, evidence that a part of Malconsorts was established already in 1482 …
Despite the name and the previous vegetation – Lavalle1 (1855) considered Les Malconsorts to be among the very best vineyards in Vosne-Romanne – giving it a “Premiere Cuvee” rating along with Romanee Saint-Vivant, Les Gaudichots, La Grande Rue, Les Verroilles sous Richebourg , Les Beaux-Monts, Combe Brulee, Aux Brulees and Les Suchots. Quite many of these are now classified as grand cru.
The names Les Malconsorts and Aux Malconsorts are currently both being used for wines from this vineyard. It is not to be confused with the Au-dessus des Malconsorts – a 1.08 ha vineyard located just above Malconsorts.
The area of Malconsorts seem to have been relatively stable over the years – the current area of 5.86 ha is just marginally lover than the area (5 ha, 94 ares and 95 cents) mentioned by Lavalle in 1855.
There have however been some very slight adjustments to the boarders towards La Tache and Les Gaudichots – see the old cadastre map from 1827 below.
Ownership of Malconsorts from 1855 to 1920
As usual the ownership structure is quite well documented by the three main sources – Lavalle, Danguy & Aubertin and Rodier.
In 1855 Lavalle1 mentioned the following owners on Malconsorts: Lenoir, Marey and Moisenet-Meulien.
The ownership history before 1855 is somewhat unclear, but the Marey family could well have acquired the plots on Malconsorts shortly after the revolution i.e. late 18th century or early 19th century. Marey was well known as one of the major owners in Vosne-Romanee in the 19th century and onwards. Some of the vineyards were later included in the Liger-Belair holdings as Comte Louis Liger-Belair married the daughter of Guillaume Felix Marey and took over the management of C.MAREY and Comte LIGER-BELAIR in 1869 – at the death of Guillaume Felix Marey.
Danguy & Aubertin2 mentioned the following owners in 1892: Dr Chanut, Liger-Belair and Veuve de Millot. The only remaining owner from 1855 was Liger-Belair (Marey).
Lamarche – another new owner – is related to the Grivelet family. Francoise Marie Grivelet (1878 – 1955) was married to Henri Theodore Lamarche in 1898, she was the daughter of Claude Emmanuel Grivelet and Marie Maignot (1851 – 1878)8. This could indicate that the Lamarche plots also comes from Chanut. This is supported by the location of the Lamarche plots – they are both in connection with the plots Grivelet sold to Bichot.
It seems that Domaine de la Romanee-Conti also owned a plot on Malconsorts in 1920 – Jacques Chambon was an ancestor of Aubert de Villaine of DRC.
The Charles Thomas/Thomas Moillard era (1933 – 2005)
During the late 1920s and early 1930s the financial crises hit Burgundy and a lot of vineyards changed hands in this period.
The Liger-Belair vineyard holdings were auctioned away in 1933 and only a small selection of vineyards remained under the Liger-Belair ownership. The extensive holdings in Malconsorts were acquired by the Thomas-Moillard estate – including the plot located just next to the original La Tache vineyard – the plot above the dotted line on the map below.
The end of the Grivelet period on Malconsorts – 1964
Grivelet sold the Frantin estate with its holdings in Malconsorts to Albert Bichot in 1964. Via this deal Albert Bichot became the second largest owner on Malconsorts (since 2005 the largest owner).
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