David Duband: A Testament To Winemaking Excellence

July 10, 2024

David Duband winemaker

An Introduction to David Duband

In 1991, while serving his obligatory year in the French military at a regional gendarmerie near his home in Chevannes, in the Hautes-Côtes de Nuits region of Burgundy, David Duband faced a life-altering moment when his father Pierre, who cultivated several hectares of vineyards on the cooler, high western slopes above the Côtes de Nuits, proposed purchasing an acre of nobler vineyards in nearby Nuits-St.-Georges and offered David the opportunity of taking over the winemaking. David eagerly accepted, enrolled in a crash winemaking course, secured permission to leave his military post for harvest, and began working in the cellar below the family house. This marked the beginning of David’s journey to becoming one of the most sought after winemakers in Burgundy.

Since taking over his family’s domaine in 1991, David Duband has steadily advanced the quality of his wines. His move away from conventional farming began in 1999, culminating in organic certification in 2006. In 2005, he acquired prime vineyards from Jacky Truchot, including old-vine parcels in the Grand Crus, Clos de la Roche and Charmes-Chambertin. A significant shift occurred in 2008 when David embraced whole-cluster fermentation, inspired by tastings of old bottlings from classic producers like Domaine Dujac and Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. This change resulted in livelier, more elegant wines that better express the subtle differences between vineyards, highlighting the terroir and soil signature of each parcel with greater precision.


What is Whole Cluster Fermentation?

As mentioned, David Duband’s winemaking philosophy prominently features the use of whole cluster fermentation, a traditional yet distinctive technique involving the fermentation of entire grape clusters, stems included. This method imparts a unique set of complexities and nuances to the wine, introducing subtle herbaceous tones, increased tannic structure, and deeper layers of aromatics. By incorporating the stems, Duband achieves a more intricate and layered flavour profile, enhancing the overall character of the wine.

The decision to use whole cluster fermentation at Domaine David Duband (between 30-40% whole bunches are used) was driven by a desire to create wines that express the purest essence of their terroir, with the structure and complexity to age gracefully. This technique is particularly well-suited to Pinot Noir, Burgundy’s cornerstone varietal, and has enabled Duband to highlight the elegant, floral, and earthy qualities inherent in the region’s terroir. The adoption of whole cluster fermentation has been pivotal in the Domaine’s evolution towards producing more refined wines, characterised by brighter acidity and more pronounced minerality.

“Once I had tasted old bottles from Dujac and DRC made with whole clusters I knew I wanted to make similarly aromatics wines” David Duband.

This approach exemplifies how traditional techniques can be harnessed to elevate modern winemaking, reflecting Domaine David Duband’s dedication to innovation within the boundaries of organic and thoughtful practices. As a result, Duband’s wines not only capture the essence of their Burgundian roots but also offer a unique and nuanced drinking experience that distinguishes them in the world of fine wines.


Must Try by David Duband

Discover David Duband with 9 Elms Wines

David Duband blends innovative and traditional winemaking to create exceptional wines. His commitment to whole-cluster fermentation enhances the elegance and terroir expression of each bottle. Dive into the depth and complexity of Domaine David Duband’s wines and experience the purity, finesse, and unique character rooted in Burgundian tradition. Explore his wines now on 9 Elms Wines and taste the magic for yourself!


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