In 1991, then-20-year-old David Duband returned home from a shift at his local military post to learn his father was purchasing a 1-acre plot in Nuits-Saint-Georges. Despite growing up in the Burgundian countryside and cultivating humble vines in the outlying Hautes-Côtes appellation, nobody in his family had ever made wine. Instead, they sold their fruit to the local cooperative. Duband was about to change all that.
In the years that followed, he enrolled in a 2-year winemaking program and set up shop in the cellar below his family’s home, learning the trade from scratch. He gradually converted all of his vineyards and long-term leases to organic and biodynamic viticulture and gained a devoted partner in François Feuillet—a business man and Burgundy fanatic who provided Duband access to top crus like Échezeaux and secured the renowned 17-acre holdings of now-retired Jacky Truchot. With the help of mentors like Robert Jayer, he learned to ferment with native yeasts and continued to fine-tune his craft, using less and less oak and (since 2008) more whole clusters to make elegant, “digeste” wines like the old Burgundies he loves. Today, he works with a dazzling number of climats, each as pure, vibrant and indicative-of-where-it’s-from as the last and is becoming a reference to seek out in the Côtes de Nuits.
Bourgogne Hautes-Côtes de Nuits “Louis Auguste”
variety: pinot noir soil type: limestone avg vine age: 50 years
From Duband’s family’s original vines in the Hautes-Côtes—among the highest in the appellation, at 1300 feet. The wine is vinified using 50-60% whole clusters, with a 17-day cuvaison with intermittent pumpovers and punch-downs by foot. After pressing and settling, it’s racked into barrels—30% new—and aged for 14 months before being bottled without fining or filtration.
variety: pinot noir soil type: limestone & marl avg vine age: 50 years
Vines for Duband’s Nuits-Saint-Georges bottling hail from La Charmotte, Aux Saints-Juliens, and Les Plateaux lieux-dits, all farmed according to organic and biodynamic regimen. Vinification is the same as for the other wines in the range: 50-60% whole cluster fermentation with intermittent pump-overs and punch-downs by foot, 14 months of elevage in barrel and bottling without fining or filtration.
variety: pinot noir soil type: clayey limestone avg vine age: 40 years
Vines for Duband’s Chambolle-Musigny hail from east-facing Les Chardannes and Les Herbues lieux-dits, all farmed according to organic and biodynamic regimen. Vinification is the same as for the other wines in the range yet includes a greater amount of whole clusters (around 80%). 14 months of elevage in barrel and bottling without fining or filtration.
Morey-Saint-Denis 1er Cru Clos Sorbe
variety: pinot noir soil type: limestone avg vine age: 40 years
The Clos Sorbe 1er Cru lies just south of the village of Morey-Saint-Denis, near Clos de la Bussière. Duband’s vines here are tended organically and biodynamically, and vinification is the same as for the other wines in the range yet includes a greater amount of whole clusters (around 80%). 14 months of elevage in barrel and bottling without fining or filtration.
David Duband in the News
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