William Fevre – 2020


Didier Seguier 2022 Domaine William FevreTasted in Chablis with Didier Seguier, 06 January 2021.

Domaine William Fèvre
21, avenue Oberwesel
89800 Chablis
Tel: +33 3 98 98 98
More reports with Domaine William Fevre

Didier on 2021:
It was better than in 2016 for volume; it was low in the Chablis but in the crus we had yields of 30-40 hl/ha – but half that in Chablis. The black frost really finished a lot of the vines on the plateau…

Didier on 2020:
It could be complicated – Sometimes the same vine had some golden bunches, others were still green – really complicated. The great terroirs delivered the more consistent maturity. Generally, a vintage with 40-45 hl/ha – I’d accept that each year here with good grapes – and we had! Outside of some grilled grapes, the cleanliness was fine. We had frost but it was very dry in March so we didn’t see a lot of damage. 2-3 periods of canicule that grilled the S-SW-facing grapes. Then, 10-15 August, a little rain helped finish the maturity. We harvested the first grapes the 25 August – the same day as in 2003.

The wines…

Pure, precise, elegant – but accessible – not a bit austere. I am rarely surprised by the consistent quality from this producer and, of course, there were many great wines. In particular, there is an elegance here that is much rarer at other addresses. I don’t think they outperformed the vintage quite as much as in 2019 – but they still have great wines…

They had no Petit Chablis to show. Some Chablis is bottled but all the domaine wines tasted here are still in tank – 18-19 months being the period of elevage planned:

2020 Chablis
48 hectares of vines with an average age of 50 years – ‘more than most 1er crus’
That’s really aromatic – complex, attractive – a bit of everything in this. Wide – airy, mobile – simply a beautiful, mouth-watering wine with a lot of elegance. You can drink this from the start. Delicious and excellent.

2020 Chablis 1er Beauroy
1.1 ha from three different parcels.
Easy – wide, freshly perfume – so pure – like the last. Fuller, a little extra structure but juicy and mineral. Another very elegant wine – particularly for Beauroy. Vibrant finishing. Really super Beauroy…

2020 Chablis 1er Montmains
3.8 ha Butteaux (mainly) plus Forets, Montmains – about the same each of those two
Narrower – a little – a more structural, cooler, nose. Mouth-filling, cool fruit, lots of energetic complexity but still holding on to an elegance like the last. Juicy and excellent wine. Strongly mineral finishing with a good salinity – maybe better than excellent 😉

2020 Chablis 1er Vaillons
One of the earliest harvesting areas. First organic vineyard for Fevre in 2006. 3.5 hectares mainly ‘Vaillons’ but a little Minot, Roncières and Chatains too.
Here is extra depth – more salinity – there’s plenty of material here. More incisive, growing in intensity – melting, with a depth of new flavours – fine agrumes. Great wine…
2020 Chablis 1er Les Lys
Not many producers; 17 ha in total, here are 1 ha from 2 parcels from the top of appellation, N-NE facing so with freshness and acidity. It’s part of Vaillons but these vines are over the top of the hill so not the same exposure. Old vines with a small yield. Decided to separate since 1998, before was in the Vaillons. ‘Naturally these vines don’t produce much, only 40 hl/ha in 2018 – there’s a lot of court noué here, hence the low yields of small grapes.
More citrus-skin aromatic profile. A little wider, but – ooh – that’s so good, incisive, chalky, ultra-pure – easy, pure minerality. Another great wine.

2020 Chablis 1er Mont de Milieu
0.55 ha. ‘We’ve had these vines 7-8 years now and we are starting to see what we want from the wines.’
Wide, complex – so complex. Extra growing sheen of acid-led citrus flavour – complex agrumes here – yellow fruit but multiple types. Fine and elegantly mouthwatering – so far the style of the Maison this year.

2020 Chablis 1er Montée de Tonnerre
2.24 ha, from Pied d’Aloup (25%), Chapelots (50%) and Bréchain (25%), this latter parcel with vines from 1936. ‘Always a paler colour to all the other wines.’
Narrower but silken and deeper – showing a little more of the minerality. More gas – so extra energy – but this flavour melts over the palate, slight reduction showing a more lime-style citrus. That’s really fine…

2020 Chablis 1er Fourchaume
From Vaulorent – ‘We have a lot of Vaulorent!’
Ooh – that’s an inviting nose – accented with a little noble reduction. Intense, so mouth-watering – the minerality vibrates over the palate – practically dynamic. That’s a great wine…
2020 Chablis 1er Vaulorent
3.6 ha one of biggest owners. Much marne and Kimmerigian – ‘the first for depth the second for tension.’ Including the last wine there are 8 parcels, this with the older vines – 45-50 on average. Looking for the depth and minerality for this cuvée – the blend is usually similar but not necessarily the same to make this one.
An open width of floral aroma – that’s so attractive – mineral clarity in support. Drive, intensity – very pure, growing even more in intensity. Large-scaled wine in the finish. So young but that’s up there with the Lys as not just a great wine, but one that I should personally buy! But it’s a 10-year wait as a minimum for this!
2020 Chablis Bougros
“The improvement here is a big satisfaction – it’s a completely different wine to 20 years ago. It’s a generous terroir with some deep soils and plenty of yield. Organic since 2006 and we’ve worked hard to limit the yield and there’s now a balance here that we didn’t have before. There are no well-known producers here so historically it hasn’t had a high regard in general, but we can see now that it’s not an accidental grand cru – I’m very happy.” Biodynamic practice in GCs since 2010. On the plateau part.
A broader nose, a little more weight too – very yellow-citrus complexity. Ooh – that’s so incisive, deep and fluid – never fat. All the words I can think of; pure, crystalline, clarity, focus. Wow! Never ‘too’ generous, never too early to drink! Bravo.

2020 Chablis Vaudesir
1.20 ha in 3 parcels on a steep slope. ‘The wine that takes the most time to show it’s class – it needs, at best 10-15-years’
Rounder, more modestly riper fruit. Extra width, wide, ripe but still perfectly fresh fruit – a more ample shape but never lacking in finesse or mobility. The finish is full and saline. This is a super Vaudésir but I’m still tasting the previous wine, I think!

2020 Chablis Valmur
From the summit of Valmur.
Deep, profound aromas of lime and minerals. A little extra richness, a couple of mm of fat, but mobile, complex, finely textured wine. More incisive than the last despite this extra flesh. Layered in the finishing flavours – open and delicious. Simply excellent grand cru, chalky and very long finishing!

2020 Chablis La Côte de Bougerots
The fourth year in a row, this ‘demoted’ in favour of their Preuses – it seems fixed! Two parcels on the steep hillside next to the road and river – 2.80 ha and they have replanted 0.4 ha.
More about an airy width of aroma – my first impression a little toast but then it’s gone – becoming more vibrant and mineral. Mouth-filling with fresh energy and mouth-watering flavour – starting more saline than citrus. Good structure but nothing sharp or hard – you needn’t wait. The middle and finishing flavour is a complexity of agrume – then an extra minerality compared to the previous wines – wow here. Bravo!
2020 Chablis Les Preuses
2 parcels, one of 1 ha the other of 1.2 ha. ‘We rarely have austerity in Preuses.’
A faint reduction in this nose of scale – mineral, almost a little seashore. There’s extra depth – maybe 1 mm not 2, of richness. Layers of considered yet always mouth-watering flavour. Outstanding though maybe less ultra-outstanding as some of the recent, previous, years here – but still easily grand vin with wonderful clarity of finishing flavour.
2020 Chablis Les Clos
4.10 ha, principally the higher section but some lower towards Grenouilles – mainly planted before 1950 by that father of Willaim Fevre. Always the only wine in this – or pretty much any line-up of great Chablis that makes me think – Chevalier-Montrachet – but this year I see Chablis!
Actually a little narrower but still with an accent of noble reduction – zesty, complex and attractive. Yes! The fluidity of the great 2020s, growing intensity and is beautifully textured. Often the wine of the vintage for me and it has a shout for that in 2020 too. Holding an impressive weight of finishing flavour

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