all-change in morey st.denis…


a-brace-of-charlopinsWhilst the harvest starts to peak in the village of Morey, it’s all-change for some of its number. David Clark and Kellen Lignier are working their last vintages, doubtless both with a sense of sadness, but for very different reasons.

Starting with David Clark; it was clear that he hoped to move up through the crus, eventually ending up with some nice 1er or grand cru land – but after ten years, he still hadn’t broke through the villages-level ‘ceiling’. Add to that a back that wasn’t born to grape-tending and was needing regular physio-sessions, and a pretty lonely existence in Morey, earlier this year David finally decided to sell his domaine. It’s been common knowledge in and around Morey that Yann Charlopin (right, right – son of Philippe) together with his wife, Justine, are buying the domaine – indeed, everything was signed and sealed today – Yann, who has also worked in Tasmania, is looking to establish his own credentials, stepping away from the shadow of his father. The new domaine will be called Charlopin-Tisser.

David who wanted to stay in Morey until the end of the year is now paying rent 😉 I wish David all the fun and success in whatever he plans to do next – I understand some of David’s engineering creations, his bottling ‘line’ for instance, have found a worthy home at Le Grappin.

Onto Kellen Lignier, who, with her two children, combatively continued making wine (and very good wine too) following the death of her husband, Romain Lignier. Most of the domaine’s vineyards belonged to Romain/Kellen’s Father/Father-in-law, Hubert Lignier. Well-passed his retirement, Hubert embarked on a course to recover all his vines from Kellen and (I suppose) his grand-children – no easy task, as Kellen and family were de-facto metayeurs – and French law usually sides with them. First Hubert had to get a wine-maker back into the family, and that was his son, Laurent. Then he set about a number of legal actions which first returned the Gevrey 1er Les Combottes and now about 3 years later, it seems everything else. Kellen has had some bitter things to say on her Facebook page, but it seems a fait-à-complit. I assume there will be no L&A Lignier 2013’s, but Kellen rarely returns emails anymore…

I also wish Kellen, and family, all the best in whatever they next choose to do.

And it goes without saying, that a certain book’s chapter on Morey St.Denis is now way out of date…

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