Aux Malconsorts

Aux Malconsorts is one of the best-known and most highly regarded Premier Cru climats in the Vosne-Romanée appellation of Burgundy. Wines made from Pinot Noir in this vineyard – often considered to be the equal of a Grand Cru – are elegant and vibrant with spicy, floral aromas and soft tannins.

Aux Malconsorts is located at the southern corner of Vosne-Romanee’s vineyard belt, along the commune boundary with Nuits-Saint-Georges. It is the lowly partner of the superior La Tâche Grand Cru climat, which lies a tantalizingly short distance away across the narrow Les Gaudichots vineyard.

Maps and records from before 1936 (when the Grand Cru classification was formalized and made law) show that Aux Malconsorts was once considered to be very much on a par with its now more-glorious neighbors. The Comité d’Agriculture de Beaune made its classification of the region’s vineyard sites in 1860, a time when much attention was being paid to the value of French wines, both from Bordeaux and Burgundy. Contemporaneous maps show that Aux Malconsorts is clearly marked as being among the “first-class” sites, along with several contiguous vineyards on the other side of the Nuits-Saint-Georges commune boundary.

The terroir here is very similar to that of neighboring La Tâche. Aux Malconsorts lies on the gentle midslope of the Côte d’Or, giving it a favorable southeast aspect which provides all-day exposure to sunlight, tempering Burgundy’s cool climate. As such, the grapes are in the perfect position to ripen slowly and evenly, giving a good balance between rich flavor complexity and acidity: something that translates to the wines themselves.

The soils that cover Aux Malconsorts are also well-suited to viticulture. In the upper part of the vineyard, the thin soil is made up of stony clay over a hard limestone base. Further down the slope, this becomes slightly deeper and richer. These limestone-based soils are low in nutrients and drain freely, which stresses the vines the perfect amount and consequently leads to low vigor and yield. Highly concentrated berries are produced as a result.

There are two principal reasons why Aux Malconsorts does not hold Grand Cru status: the owners at the time of the original classification actively rejected the rating when it was offered; today, the land falls marginally short of the required quality. The first reason may sound unlikely now, given the current profitability of Grand Cru vineyards, but there are, in fact, several sites in the Côte d’Or which rejected Grand Cru status in the same way. These include Rugiens and Epenots in Pommard.