Thierry Glantenay has taken over at his family domaine and is now producing exquisite, ethereal Volnay from it’s best terroirs and full, powerful Pommard from it’s best terroirs, in fact the Glantenay’s posses most of the great red terroirs from the Côte de Beaune. Thierry also has a small but brilliantly sited plot of Puligny-Montrachet 1er Cru Les Folatières which has 80 year old vines. He only produces a few hundred bottles a year though and has loyal customers for it; I have put up my hand as the wine is fabulous, he poured it for me at the end of our tasting and I could still taste it as I drove the car back down the hill out of Volnay and back to Beaune.
For many years this estate has been a well kept insiders secret as it only produced 20% of it's harvest selling the rest to Dominique Laurent and Lalou Bize Leroy. Both Laurent and Leroy are known for their exacting standards and only buy from well situated (within their Cru) perfectly farmed, old vines - all of which the Glantenay's have. Old vines are very important in Burgundy and chez Glantenay the average age is over 50 and their vines in Pommard "Sausilles" are thought to be about 80 years old.
A reserved and gentle character, he is at pains to explain that he doesn’t practice extreme viticulture, preferring to achieve balance and harmony in the vineyard. Likewise in the winery, everything is done gently but with perfection. Thierry trained as an engineer and so is always asking questions of himself and his methods, perfecting things with each effort.
Across the board these wines are precise, focused and reflective of their underlying terroir, with great sappiness and depth in the mid-palates, coupled with brilliant structural integrity that makes them, to me, amongst the finest wines made in the Côtes de Beaune. Thierry is a meticulous and talented winemaker, who uses no more than twenty-five percent new oak for any of his top wines, allowing for a beautiful synthesis of pure fruit, delicate framing and a beautifully transcribed expression of terroir in each and every wine. There is a refined elegance and perfumed precision to the Glantenay wines that is very special indeed.