In 2001 Thibault Liger-Belair took over an old family property in Nuits-St-Georges, taking back the vines which had been contracted out to various sharecroppers, and leasing a cuverie just down the road. The original family jewels (his branch) consist of Richebourg, Clos de Vougeot and Nuits-St-Georges Les St-Georges, to which he has added significantly over the following 20 years.

Viticulture & Vinification

The domaine now covers 9ha plus nearly as much in purchased grapes. The vines are 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 élevage, but Thibault is not afraid of reductive flavours at this stage which he feels add to the eventual substance and complexity of the wine.

2017 was the first vintage for Thibault in his new purpose built and eco-sustainable winery on the outskirts of Nuits-St-Georges. Thibault now not only has the space here to make a little more wine, work in exactly the way he wants and to put into practice his theories about the ideal form of fermenting tanks and how to prepare barrels. Broadly speaking Thibault takes over the Tonnellerie de Mercurey for two days each year to choose the exact nature of the toast for his barrels. He is experimenting with near zero toasting in some cases.

The oak regime is not to exceed 50 per cent 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 holding of Richebourg Grand Cru was planted in 1931 and is in the southern part of Les Richebourgs, with Domaine de la Romanée-Conti on one side and Etienne Grivot on the other. According to Thibault, you feel this wine in the throat – it is not ready to show all the detail on the palate when young, but the richness of fruit is revealed in an incredible aftertaste.

Having the largest holding of Nuits-St-Georges 1er Cru Les St-Georges, Thibault has been at the forefront of the proposal for the vineyard to be promoted to grand cru. This is typically a rich, succulent wine with blackberry fruit as well as the more traditional plums. There is enough tannic structure for long ageing. The vines were planted in 1944 and 1946 but with substantial replacement of missing vines after 2009.

The village sector of Vosne-Romanée Aux Réas drops down rapidly from the premier cru Clos des Réas, but Thibault’s holding of the former is very well placed on the southern slope. The limestone component in the soil is sufficiently strong to discourage Thibault from using whole bunches in the vinification. This is a racy, lively, well perfumed Vosne- Romanée that merits village-plus in classification.

I am much impressed by the Bourgogne Aligoté, Clos des Perrières La Combe. The vines were planted in 1978, opposite the Gentilhommière restaurant. There is a special technique here, with one week skin contact after a light crushing. Then 8 hours in the vertical press at 1.6 bars (vertical press in 2019). Irt is then vinified and aged in barrel, with no new wood. This makes for quite a different style of Aligoté, absolutely sensual on the palate, with so many flavours chasing each other.

Among the négociant bottlings is an excellent Charmes-Chambertin, subtitled Aux Charmes in counterpoint to those who make a version of Charmes-Chambertin Aux Mazoyères.

Richebourg Grand Cru 0.52
Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 0.73
Nuits-St-Georges 1er Cru Les St-Georges 2.06
Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Petits Monts 0.1
Vosne-Romanée Aux Réas 0.54
Nuits-St-Georges La Charmotte 0.39
Gevrey-Chambertin La Croix des Champs 0.16

Thibault Liger-Belair also has substantial holdings in Moulin-à-Vent in the Beaujolais.

Click here to view all wines from Thibault Liger-Belair
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