Today we offer David Duband’s 2018 Burgundies.
Pre-Paid pricing provided with the offer. The wine is due in September.
*Orders must be paid for in full by 10 August to receive pre-paid pricing.
The 2018 vintage in Burgundy was highlighted by three months of gloriously warm and dry weather through July, August and September. That meant zero disease pressure in the vineyard and has resulted in a range of wines that at the top end rival some of the very best vintages. 2018 has even been compared to legendary years like 1947, 1959, 1990 and 1999. For a reference to more contemporary vintages though, Burghound’s Allen Meadows ventured, ‘a blend of 2016 and 2015 with the ripeness and richness of the former and the density of the latter.’
Despite its age, and, strictly classified vineyards, Burgundy has been evolving in quite a dynamic way. Vineyards have cycled through replanting as vines have reached the end of their productive life, shifts to more biological practices, away from chemical use have been rapid, fruits sorting and handling techniques have been refined, sorting tables are now widespread across the Côte. Like everywhere wine growing region of the world climate change has been a point of constant discussion.
We have also seen generational shifts, and, access to the world stimulate experimentation. A couple of generations ago Burgundian winemakers rarely traveled. Now, young makers from around the world share their experiences, travel to the opposite hemisphere for experience in the ‘New World’ and ‘Old World’ respectively.
David Duband starting with his family Domaine now has more than 20 vintages under his belt. From my research, what most intrigues me is his shift to whole bunch and whole berry fermentation in around 2008. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen the wines from before this shift, only the wines from after.
Getting my head around a producer from Burgundy I haven’t seen before is always a challenge. You need to try the breadth of wines and the right quality level to see just what they can do!
Before putting this offer out I wanted to make sure I had a grasp of Dubands wines and ordered three Premier Cru’s form 2017 to explore. The Morey-Saint-Denis ‘Clos Sorbè’, Chambolle-Musigny ‘Les Sentiers’, and, Nuits-Saint-Greorges ‘Les Procès’.
Tasting young Burgundy is a very different experience to drinking Burgundy in the zone. You need experience to understand where they are going to go. Duband’s 17’s showed the traits of young whole bunch Burgundy, that slight angularity, the dominance of whole bunch characters on the nose. Every time I see it, I think of a session in the cellars at Dujac, another whole bunch advocate, and, inspiration to Duband’s use of the technique. Dujac’s young wines had the same traits. Once you got to something c. 7 years old the site expression really started to shine through and the individual personalities became evident.
One of the most common questions I have from new Burgundy drinkers is ‘What’s all the fuss about?’ I typically respond with the question ‘Have you drunk any aged Burgundy?’ The answer is invariably ‘No’. Although many wines from Burgundy are more approachable young, it’s still only with age that they reveal their true potential.
Segway over. Back to Duband’s 2017’s. The freshness, and, energy of the wines was immediately obvious, Duband it turns out, is one of the earliest to pick. What shone through under the mask of youth was the clear expression of village and vineyard. The Morey looked like Morey should, red fruits fanning out through your palate, with comparatively plush tannins, the Chambolle having the line and length, the perfume and refinement, the Nuits having the earthy savoury slightly darker nature and luscious fruit to it.
On both the technical and personality side they are very well made with excellent attention to detail. I expect the wines to age very well, particularly with all wines bottled under DIAM.
Looking forward to trying some 2018’s when they hit the tasting bench!
About David Duband
Regarded as one of the rising stars of Burgundy, David Duband took over his family Domaine at a very young age and now has more than 20 vintages of experience behind him. Starting with very small family holdings David, together with his business partner Francois Feuillet, have added to his portfolio of wines through the purchase of some exceptional old Grand cru vineyards throughout Gevrey Chambertin and Morey St Denis.
In recent years David has adapted his work in both the vineyards and cellars and in the last few years is producing wines with not only remarkable finesse and detail but also exhilarating intensity and freshness. Working organically in the vineyards and with low levels of S02 in the cellar he also uses a relatively high percentage of whole bunch ferment and a low percentage of new oak for ageing and this is adapted to each wine as it needs. This results in wines of striking purity with fabulous depth and intensity without sacrificing the details of the origins of each parcel of grapes. These are wines showing terroir and the soil signature of the fruit for each parcel above all else. These are wines that are built to age classically and gracefully.
The 2018 Vintage David Duband
‘David Duband, who exploits, among other vines, the former Jacky Truchot parcels, as well as consults for the Louis Max wines, succinctly told me that 2018 is a “vintage that I’m actually very happy with as far as the results are concerned. There were a few ups and downs during the growing season with some mildew in the early going, and then spots of hail in Nuits during July but otherwise the season was fairly calm if very hot and dry. I started picking on the 3rd of September and brought in very generous yields, at least for us, which is to say between 38 and 48 hl/ha. Potential alcohols were really very reasonable given how hot it was, ranging from 12.5 to 13.3%. I used from 60 to 95% whole clusters and basically had no real problems with the vinifications though I did monitor them very carefully. As the style of the wines, they’re not nearly as marked by the high heat of the vintage as I thought that they might be and they also express their respective terroirs very well. I like them.’ Burghound.com January 2020.
On trend, David has shifted all of his vineyards to organic viticulture with the usual justification for the approach.
After the vineyard, how the fruit is processed when it arrives at the winery, and, handled during fermentation is the key to achieving the desired expression of site, and, style. Modern technology, like the destemming and sorting machine explored in this Wine Bites Magazine article, has made it possible for winemakers to choose a full spectrum of fruit processing options. From thrashing the grapes off the stems, to gentle removal of whole berries, and, the lowest tech option of all, using whole bunches. The video below explores David’s shift to majority whole bunch ferments for his Pinots. Inspired by the wines of Dujac, DRC and other whole bunch afficiandos, the rational being, that the technique offer wines of sophistication, restraint, with the kind of personality in the wines that can make your heart race!
The three images below show different elements of Pinot fermentation. The first shows skins being emptied from a concrete fermenter. You can see there are no stalks in the mix, so no whole bunches. This fermenter is actually a sarcophagus. The horizontal rips on the side used to help separate coffins. The opening at the top having a support for a lid to sit flush. The second image shows a ferment with a high percentage of whole bunches. You can see the bunch stalks spread through out the skins. The stick in the ferment would have a small cricular head on it used to plunge the skins into the fermenting wine below. The third picture shows a whole bunch that looks to be from a fermentation that is complete. Notice the whole berries still attached to the bunch stalk. When you eat this the pop in your mouth and fizz as you suck out the wine!
Where in the World is David Duband?
David Duband is based in Chevanne, 15mins to the west of Nuits-Saint-Georges. He works with significant holding in the Hautes-Côtes de Nuits, and, with his business partner, François Feuillet, has progressively spread his wings with the acquisition of Jacky Tuchot’s vineyards including old vine parcels of Clos de la Roche in Morey-Saint-Denis and Charmes in Gevrey-Chambertin amongst others. A quick search for Truchot’s will reveal the stratospheric prices they command and the potential of these vineayrds for Duband. Today, Duband has holdings across the Côtes de Nuits with additional parcels in Chambolle-Musigny, and, Vosne-Romanee.