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Women In Wine
March is Women's History Month, and with that in mind we'd like to take this opportunity to highlight some of the amazing females that we're lucky enough to have in our wonderful industry! From winemakers to sommeliers, marketing minds to winery heads there is a limitless number of female talents in the wine world and we're all - ALL - better off having them in our orbit! It would be impossible to list everyone we admire and cherish in one article, so today we're going to focus on one of our favorite regions (Burgundy) and three dynamic winemakers that are making serious waves in the world-famous Cote-d'Or!
There has been a long running stigma in Burgundy - and for most of the world, actually - that to be a great winemaker you had to be male. Clearly that's not the case, and no one illustrates that better in Burgundy today than Alix Millot (Domaine Jean-Marc Millot), Camille Thiriet (Maison MC Thiriet), and the dynamic Mugneret sisters (Domaine Mugneret-Gibourg). These three properties are each very unique, each being led by females in their respective cuveries and all at the total peak of their respective games for quality and consumer demand!
Alix Millot is now running the whole show at her namesake domaine in Nuits-St-Georges, having completed the generational transition and taken over from her father, Jean-Marc, over the past few vintages. She is a natural winemaking talent, with an inherent gift for managing her gorgeous terroirs - some of the finest in Burgundy with plots in Les Suchots, Echezeaux, Grand Echezeaux, and Clos du Vougeot! Her style blends traditional Burgundy with a modern touch, and the entire lineup is an exhilarating display of raw talent and skill. If you can find them, never pass on a bottle of Millot!
Another tough-to-come-by producer comes from Camille Thiriet at Maison MC Thiriet. While she started her wine career in sales, Camille made the transition to the vineyards and today makes some of the most intriguing wines in the entire world. Why? Because she has mastered the process of purchasing grapes from the finest sites which are managed by the best farmers - relationships she formed while she was in sales - to source outstanding fruit. For instance, her Cuvée Confidentielle is a "travelling" Bourgogne Blanc she sources from different appellations based on the quality of the vintage - 2017 was from Meursault; 2018 from Puligny; 2019 from Chablis! Year in and year out, she's proved that she is a serious force with which to be reckoned, and her wines just seem to get better and better!
Unlike Camillie Thiriet, and to a lesser extent Alix Millot, the Mugneret sisters need little to no introduction for any true Burghound. Marie-Christine and Marie-Andrée Mugneret are firmly at the head of one of Burgundy's most sought-after and coveted domaines. And that's not hyperbole; it is easier to find DRC than it is to get your hands on a bottle of Mugneret-Gibourg. Their female family roots run deep too: both Marie-Christine and Marie-Andrée each have two daughters of their own, who someday will (hopefully!) continue the tradition of this stunning estate!
These are just a few examples of the countless outstanding female forces in Burgundy. Chances are, the next bottle of Chambolle or Volnay you pull a cork on will have been dramatically affected by a strong female wine professional. Think about their contributions as you ponder the delicious wines, not just in March but for all the days to come!