Cyril Gautheron – 2020


Cyril Gautheron 2022Tasted in Fleys with Cyril Gautheron, 10 January 2022.

Domaine Alain et Cyril Gautheron
18 Rue des Pregirots
89800 Fleys
Tel: +33 3 86 42 44 34
More reports with Domaine Alain & Cyril Gautheron

Cyril on 2021:
From some places I made nothing, others, sometimes at the bottom of the hills gave between 40 and 50 hl/ha but in the end, for the domaine, we have 40-50% of a normal vintage. We needed to do quite a lot by hand – nearly 12 hectares. I’m very agreeably surprised by the quality of the wines that I see – but there are big differences, of course, depending on the sector – the protected 1ers gave a bit more than half a harvest – some, with their second generation grapes, could be described as ‘strict’ but like in 2016 there are some very good surprises…

Cyril on 2020:
I’d happily make wines like this every year. The volumes depended a little; PC and Chablis were to plan, or almost, and the 1ers some a little less but yes it was good.

The wines…

This domaine in 2020 reminds me of what I said about the 19s at Fevre – ‘I would have paid to make this tasting.’ Many great wines, that are worth a special search. It’s the fluidity of practically all the wines here that I found so engrossing… I ‘restricted’ myself to buying just two of them – nobody said that life would be easy!

Principally the wines are sealed with DIAM5:

2020 Frisson
50:50 from the Yonne and the rest Côte Chalonnais & Maconnais
This is wide, fresh but also direct. Mouth-filling, a certain warm ripeness to the fruit but a delicious wine all the same. Long and slightly mineral finishing – that’s very tasty wine.

2020 Petit Chablis
Bottled October, this the domaine wine there’s an additional contract cuvée too. This bottled like the last
More width, more salinity to this nose. Extra fresh vs the last – really a mouth-watering and energetic wine. Holding a strong finish – there’s super, balanced, power here…

Three Chablis cuvées but none have been bottled:

2020 Chablis
Bottled December, representing 21 hectares of vines; Fye, Chablis, Chichée vines – all right bank. First bottling planned for 18 Jan.
Extra pure, full of inviting citrus. Energy, volume – a little green citrus. Ooh that’s completely delicious already. Mouth-watering in the finish…

2020 Chablis Cuvée Emeraude
3 ha of vines between Fleys and Vaucoupin – 15 months on fine lees, made this since 2009 and worked organically here since 2009 too, without certification, ‘Sometimes I think the treatments are too much – I prefer a homoeopathic approach – of-course if something is needed. Of course, practically nothing was needed in the last 2 years. Some full-sun places the weeds died on their own.’
That’s full of citrus too but also full of floral perfume. Extra freshness and minerlaity. Depth of flavour, layers of flavour – great wine!
2020 Chablis Vieilles-Vignes
Vines older than 55 years, provenance of those grapes the same as for the last wine. A mix of tank and wood for the first part of elevage then assembled into stainless for the last part of elevage. Amount of wood depends on the vintage, here just over 30%. Not bottling before March.
A vertical nose of florals above and a super depth of more mineral and citrus. Wider, juicy wine. That’s as good as the Emeraude for sure. The difference? An extra depth of salinity to these juicy flavours and citrus skin – bravo again!
2020 Chablis 1er Vaucoupin
Two parcels that average nearly 50 years of age – older vines are coming too. Bottled just before the harvest – Why? ‘Simple – I needed all my small tanks for the harvest!’ All tank elevage
A nose that opens well with air, becoming more vibrant and attractively mineral. Incisive, agrume fruit here – a saline-edged citrus complexity. Chablis pure!

Both Fourneaux fined but not yet filtered:

2020 Chablis 1er Fourneaux
Have almost 3 ha of this. A lot of white clay with some blue clay in the mix. Probably to be bottled next week. Also tank elevage for this.
More yellow/golden citrus, subtly salted again – that’s really super. Ooh – that’s so juicy and energetic – that’s already certainly a great Chablis. Super depth and persistence to this finish.
2020 Chablis 1er Fourneaux Vieilles-Vignes
About 75-year-old vines. Pres Girots and Fourneaux lieu-dits – zero oak in this vintage – ‘I decided that I prefer it that way.’
Another wine with a fabulous clarity of aroma – so invigorating. More gas here. Slowly filling every space in the mouth, a little more mineral, direct and saline. ‘Wow’ wines here this year – you can chew on the finish of this, very faintly phenolic and citrus skin finishing.

2020 Chablis 1er Mont de Milieu
Vines of 50-60 years of age. 15% barrel elevage – always 228-litres – bottled start of September
Fresh but here is more generosity, perhaps ripeness to the fruit. I like the structure here – there’s a certain strictness and directness – intensity too but this wine is slowly melting over and around the palate – give it 2-3 years in the cellar if you can, then enjoy…

2020 Chablis 1er Vaillons
This and the Montmains have 80-year-old vines. On the border of Sechets in Epinottes and Minots. Bottled in September with 25% wood elevage.
Wide but this width is a little deeper – above some fine florals – a suggestion of acacia. Hmm, that’s super – juicy, layered, saline – yes!

2020 Chablis 1er L’Homme Mort
0.35 ha – the smallest of the premier cru surfaces here. High and south-facing look towards Fourchaume and Chablis, beyond. Also a September bottling, another with 25% barrel elevage but one barrel was new so the average is higher.
That’s a compelling nose; ultra-fine, with such clarity – elegant rather than powerful. Vibrant and wide – clearly great wine, layered, always mouth, watering I almost have the impression of a little chilli – warm white pepper! Great wine…

2020 Chablis 1er Montmains Vieilles-Vignes
0.66 ha in Montmains but sitting on the border with Forêts. 80 year-old-vines. ‘Tronconic’ tank for 1 year and since the harvest in tank – for bottling between March and May depending on how it tastes.
A subtle reduction takes these aromas deeper – growing more and more airy with time in the glass. More gas. But such a shape – love the structure here – and so juicy-flavoured too. The finish is direct but impressively persistent. Love.

2020 Chablis 1er Montée de Tonnerre
Part in 500-litre barrels, then a part in concrete eggs then all in tank with fine lees.
A narrower nose – it’s fresh, it’s citrusy but vs the other quite tight today. A width of extra-mineral, chalky flavour. There’s intensity here too – fine acidity. Becoming juicier. This is a little discreet vs some others today but it has the same intensity and concentration. It could be another great one – the most saline finishing of all.

All the following are contracts, it’s a blend of coopers for the barrels – nothing will be bottled much before March or April:

2020 Chablis Bougros
This won’t be bottled before May – it’s still on fine lees in tank after 1 year in barrel.
This nose is smokier but there are flowers too. The finishing salinity of the last is almost the starting point for this. Still a little smokey but what impressive complexity there is here – you have everything. As a minimum this is excellent.

2020 Chablis Valmur
Old parcel, Grenouilles side.
There’s more clarity and depth to this nose – nothing fumé with this one. More driving, more direct – still plenty of width – but comparatively. I’m finding this a hint calmer and certainly more composed. Extra citrus skin complexity in the finish for this – a broader finish too – clearly great!

2000 Chablis Vaudésir
The previous wines with 500-litre barrel elevage but this with 228s
Fresh and broad – almost brooding – with some pepper complexity here. Also a composed wine – possibly more concentrated but less openly energetic – yet growing in super, chalky, intensity. With a bit more oak it could be Corton-Charlemagne!

2020 Chablis Preuses
Back to 500-litre barrel elevage – the only one with no new barrels.
Open, more with flashes of brilliance than full and sustained. Plenty of structure here – and more apparent energy than the last too. I love this complexity. The finish is concentrated, intense but with perfect energy too. That’s another great wine too – but maybe my Coup-de-Coeur is the Valmur today…

Agree? Disagree? Anything you'd like to add?

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