One of the first producers I visited in Burgundy was Domaine Hubert Lignier, back around 2000. At the time it was one of the top estates in Morey-Saint-Denis, producing intense, long-lived, and relatively dark wines.
Back in the day, it was the very talented Romain Lignier who ran the estate. He made tremendous wines until he sadly passed away – much too soon – in 2004.
This started a problematic period for the estate, but luckily, Romain’s brother Laurent Lignier came back to take over, together with his father, Hubert.
I sort of lost track of Lignier in the mid-2000s. I tasted the wines now and then; it was always a fine glass of classic Morey, but it seemed that global warming needed some kind of response to keep energy in the wines.
Time has, however, moved on. With Laurent Lignier now firmly at the wheel, the wines are showing a great revival and the style has adjusted to the new world of climate change.
These are exciting times at Domaine Hubert Lignier, with father Hubert still alive and giving more than his name to the estate.
The new style and processes
Domaine Hubert Lignier has moved to organic viticulture and is also testing biodynamic methods, as the organic results have been good.
The vinification has been lightened somewhat, meaning extraction has been reduced quite a bit, giving lighter, more energetic wines with a more floral, expressive note and less of the rather dark, dense, older-school Morey notes.
The floral style is further enhanced by including 20% whole-cluster grapes in the vinification, as well as a more moderate use of oak. Together, this gives lighter, more vividly complex wines.
All in all, I got a positive surprise going back to the domaine.
I am a Brompton guy – meaning that when possible I use my (admittedly electric) bicycle to travel to tastings. This gives me the opportunity to experience the vineyards and take photos on a regular basis.
I was therefore rather shocked when I arrived at Domaine Hubert Lignier: Laurent Lignier sadly looked rather battered from a recent bicycle accident in which he was hit by a car coming from a side road. A painful accident, no doubt, and here’s to a full and speedy recovery.
This leads me to a warning: If you’re a visitor to Burgundy and a cyclist, please take extra care and, if possible, study the route before you go. Accidents happen, but if you plan your trips through the vines rather than on the main roads, the risk is limited and you’ll get the full experience of viticulture and the vineyards.
Today, Domaine Hubert Lignier and its associated negociant business has 11 hectares of vines, and in total produces 34 appellations – with quite a negociant branch.
We started out, however, with a more limited sample due to the bike accident. So let’s go!
Domaine Hubert Lignier Bourgogne Clos Chaliots 2020
Burgundy Clos Chaliots is one of the entry-level wines; fresh and vivid, but perhaps lacking a bit of phenolic ripeness. It’s quite light-footed, and slightly edgy.
(Drink From 2022) – Good – (86p) – tasted 28/10/2021
Domaine Hubert Lignier Morey Trilogie 2020
The Morey Trilogie is a Morey village coming from three climats: Chenevery (60%), Clos Solon (15%), and Porroux (25%) – in total 1 ha. It has good, intense fruit, and is on the generous side with a nice, floral nose. Lovely, classic Morey.
(Drink From 2030) – Very Good – (88p) – tasted 28/10/2021 –
Domaine Hubert Lignier Gevrey-Chambertin Les Seuvres 2020
The Gevrey-Chambertin Les Seuvres is a joyful wine, coming from vines on the border with Morey-Saint-Denis. It’s velvety and quite elegant, and the Gevrey charm suits this wine very well. I love the airy bouquet, which is quite precise.
(Drink From 2030) – Very Good – (89p) – tasted 28/10/2021 –
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