Our approach to Chablis was from the east along the “Route de Chablis” passing by many of the vineyards that make up the appellations of “Chablis Premier Cru” and “Chablis”.
We crossed the stone bridge over the Serein River , a tributary of the larger Yonne river and entered the idyllic and picturesque town of Chablis. Being a Sunday the majority of the domaines and caveau were closed but halfway down the main high street we struck Gold!
I’d already a wish list of a number of specific Chablis that I wanted to try as well as the lesser known wines of St.Bris which are often compared to the dry , smoky wines of Sancerre. As luck would have it a number of wine shops or OEnobistro were open and one of them S.Chablis had nearly all of the wines on my list available for tasting, what a Result.
Guided by Arnaud I worked my way through my list: Here is my selection
2012, St. Bris, Vieilles Vignes, Clotilde Davenne. 17 Euros
Fresh with great acidity, and gooseberry on the nose. Short on finish although bright and clean with great minerality. This will partner a summery goats cheese salad very well.
2012, Chablis Premier Cru, Vaillons, Domaine du Chardonnay.
Fermented in steel. Honeysuckle on the nose, but a little thin. My least favourite in this selection.
2011 Chablis Premier Cru, Fourchaume Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Vrignauld
Aged in oak. Notes of pear on the nose. Fat and waxy and good value at around 22 euros
2013 Chablis Premier Cru, Mont de Milieu, Domaine Pinson
Aged in oak but without the traditional oakiness associated with barriques, clean with a steely freshness.
2013 Chablis Premier Cru, Montee de Tonnerre, Domaine Gruhier
Aged in oak. A fatter wine than the previous one with more body.
2008 Chablis Grand Cru, Chateau Grenouilles, La Chablisienne
Burnt caramel on the nose. A rich and complex fat Chardonnay with great ageing potential although drinking well now. Aged in oak. Would be ideal partner for porcini mushrooms in a rich sauce. My favourite overall but at 55 euros a bottle not in my everyday selection.
Arnaud also recommend this one which was not available for general tasting.
2007, Chablis Grand Cru, Valmar, This is what I expect a classic Chablis to taste like. Clean but with a long finish consistent with its ageing. Drinking well now. An ideal partner to fruits de mer! I couldn’t resist this one so this made my third purchase at 38 euros so at the higher end of my budget but worth the spend!