Tasted in Chablis with Romain Collet, 28 January 2021.
Romain on 2020:
“Precoce, but I’d be happy with that each year. I had the impression that we were working on a holiday, not many visitors but always summer in the vines – we harvested a lot in the night. The wines in tank have great tension which you don’t expect in early vintages – maybe even more-so than in 2019. I think they have great potential and we made a decent yield too. There was a bit more rain in the villages around Chablis but we had quite a wet winter which was a good thing as we didn’t have much rain afterwards – we were very close to being frosted – but avoided it.”
Romain on 2019:
“We did have a little frost in 19 – which contributed to lower yields but it was the dried grapes of the summer that contributed the most to the losses. It was another hot year, we started our harvest on the 1st of September. We’re part mechanical part by hand-harvested. We worked three days but I felt that the juice was too hot, so after that, we started harvesting with the machines at midnight and working until 11 am – it didn’t affect the hand-harvesting though. The volume was rather different than 2018, we didn’t expect it to be quite so low; below 50 hl/ha. The last 5 years have averaged 45 hl/ha. Wines have a good balance of richness and super acidity.”
As ever, very tasty wines at this domaine – the finishes were particularly impressive – so long and detailed…
All diam here except for the grand crus:
2019 Petit Chablis
A hard, zesty, nose of citrus – that’s quite attractive. Wide, grained with a little tannin – a very tasty wine with depth of flavour – it could have a bit more energy – but it’s not missing much. Very good wine and I like the refreshing, long, finish here.
15 hectares of vines represented here.
A fuller nose than that of the PC. More mouth-filling and with more presence too – slowly mouth-watering, nicely mineral. Relatively easy over the palate but tasty wine. Very good wine, again with an excellent finish.
2019 Chablis Vieilles-Vignes
This will be bottled in the next 2-3 weeks. A massale selection planted in 1932
A more compact nose but deep. More structural and a little more concentrated, the texture is fine, great finishing. That’s already excellent, maybe even better than that!
2019 Chablis 1er Montmains
Only stainless-steel elevage here. From 4 parcels of true Montmains amounting to 5 hectares. November bottling. The only 1er cru with no wood in the elevage. This bottled after the harvest.
A timid nose but it has everything (else) – nice energy, depth, minerality and even a little floral accent – it’s a fine invitation. In the mouth bubbling with energy, delicious flavour, nicely mineral and a small suggestion of salinity too. Very good – with a super finishing flourish.
2018 Chablis 1er Butteaux
Alcoholic fermentation in tank then moved to wood.
Wide, mouth-filling. Here’s extra softness. A wine that’s a little too easy over the palate until the finish where there’s some mineral rigour – a good finish.
2019 Chablis 1er Le Forêt
Bought in 2005, replanted in 2008, 0.92 hectares. This is assembled in tank waiting for bottling, planned for mid-Februrary – the same for the next wine.
Extra width of minerality here. Fuller, more mouth-watering and saline – extra classicism here -the finish is still excellent – this should be, as a minimum, excellent wine, perhaps even better!
2019 Chabis 1er Butteaux
0.72 ha one parcel, organic since 2008. Planted in 1972.
Here’s a touch of barrel in the compact nose. Gassy. More mouth-filling (because of the gas) but also more textural and more layered flavour. Really a finish of unwinding complexity which augers well for the tighter first flavours – a great finish!
2019 Chablis 1er Vaillons
10 hectares here – lucky it’s mum’s favourite – ‘I can’t understand that anyone wouldn’t like it’ she says! From Epinottes, Minot, Encieres, Chatains and en Vaillons. 5% in barrel the rest in tank – after malo one part goes into older barrels. This was bottled in November – only half is currently bottled – the rest will be done later.
A fine nose – good width despite not being the most open. A big mouth-filling freshness, a frame of fine tannin surrounds beautifully mouth-watering citrus flavour. Long, layered, waves of finishing flavour – the finishes here are really super…
2019 Chablis 1er Secher
0.25 hectares a cuvée here since 2008. 50% in amphora and 50% in new barrels – the first vintage with the jars.
There’s some barrel on the nose but quite a vibrant aromatic too – the minerality is clear. The edges have been softened by the oak, but the wine is open and mouth-watering, deliciously, and shows very little wood in the flavour – it will be gone in another year. Another great finish with some salinity…
2019 Chablis 1er Mont de Milieu
Just one parcel, 0.32 hectares with a manual harvest as there’s a lot of millerandes here. 100% demi-muids (600 litres) for 8-9 months then in tank to finish.
Again a compact impression to the nose but there’s width and clarity of aroma – no oak. Very mineral and wide over the palate, complex too – extending into the layered finish – soooo long…
2019 Chablis Le Montée de Tonnerre
2 parcels – one of 0.25 plus another of 1.80 in Les Chapots. ‘The smaller brings a richness, the other a colder area brings that brings tension and vivacity.’ Vinified separately and then blended before bottling. Like the last, bottled.
Higher-tones – both fruit and flowers here. More incisive, equally mineral but accented with a floral perfume which makes it the more attractive today – another finish of layers, of waves of flavour flowing from the tongue, less incisive than MdM but no less delicious. Excellent wine – really!
2019 Chablis Valmur
A bigger nose – showing some barrel in the concentration. Direct – very direct – so mineral, green citrus, salinity and again some barrel. Keep for 2-3 years, but the shape and style here are excellent. There’s extra clarity to the lip-smacking finishing flavour too.
One parcel of 0.16 hectares. First vintage 2013 now on fermage.
A fuller nose – fresher too despite still plenty of barrel references. Extra energy – the energy of Les Clos – the barrel with much lower visibility in this flavour. This is concentrated but never rich – you have energy and a fast-paced river of flavour. To wait for, for sure, but with much anticipation – bravo!
And now for something(s) completely different:
Second vintage, same parcel. Grapes bought from a friend who is stopping his bottling. Hand-harvested by the team from here. All stainless vinifications then some time in barrels. ?I blocked the malo – I found the 18 a bit heavy, hence…’
That’s nicely fresh, mineral just an accent of the sauvignon menthol style. Rich but nicely energetic, long finishing. That’s a delicious wine. There’s 20% new barrels here – but you don’t taste it…
Crémant de Bourgogne
The base wine from 2018, all Petit Chablis, 5g dosage, malo done. 1.5 hectares here – harvested 3 weeks before the PC.
Sweetly attractive – almost a mirabelle style of fruit. Wide, elegantly energetic, long finishing – just a delicious thing. I bought like almost every year – but in magnum and these are still based on the 2015 vintage!