Profile: Guy et Olivier Alexandre

Update 20.6.2019(1.5.2019)billn

Tasted in La Chapelle-Vaupelteigne with Olivier Alexandre, 19 March 2019.

Domaine Guy et Olivier Alexandre
36 Rue du Serein
89800 La Chapelle-Vaupelteigne
Tel: +33 6 80 26 46 89

Olivier Alexandre and his father, Guy, run this domaine; Olivier has been notionally responsible since 2012. The domaine extends to over 13 hectares of vineyards which are predominantly located around their home village of La Chapelle-Vaupelteigne plus vines in three other communes: Beines, Lignorelles and Villy. There are 4 hectares of Petit Chablis above La Chapelle-Vaupelteigne, 7 hectares of Chablis and the rest of the domaine’s vines are rated 1er cru.

We do the same work for all the wines here,” says Olivier, “It’s just that the Petit Chablis happens to be ready to bottle earlier than all the others. It’s only in the last 2 years that we have sold everything in bottle. Before that there were some bulk sales.

Here is a domaine that’s very happy to work with harvesting machines – “We can directly time our attack and we are very quick in the process too. We also like to harvest ripe – so we often haven’t started when some of our neighbours have finished! In 2018 many started at the end of August, we waited until 11 September. 24 hours of settling the pressed juice, some bentonite is added and then it’s off to the tank for the fermentation – normally all is done by Christmas. We make a racking before fining and bottle as a function of demand.

Olivier on the last years:
2018 was extraordinary. For us, 2016 wasn’t a catastrophe – we weren’t frosted. But 21 April 2017 we were frosted. There didn’t seem much of a difference between 16 and 17 as the leaves had some frost on them in 2016 but for some reason we didn’t lose everything – it looked the same in 2017 but we did lose everything!

The wines…

Very good to top wines here from a past (2011) winner of the ‘jeune talents’ trophy from the region.

2018 Petit Chablis
This bottled in February – a small bottling – an early bottling due to their low stock position, but the harvest was also early so it’s not a ridiculously early ‘mise.’
Ooh, a big nose with flowers and ripeness of fruit. Mouth-filling, fresh, layered, hmm – this tastes great – ample, nicely textured – seemingly from Chablis too. Lovely wine.

2017 Chablis
This not quite sold out – but nearly. This from the last bottling in January this year.
A more mineral nose – blended with flowers too. Supple, wide, fine lime-citrus – a touch, a small depth of texture. Wide in the finish, layers, mouth-watering, tasty wine – not the ultimate in clarity but really a very tasty wine with a good mouth-watering line.

2017 Chablis Vieilles-Vignes
Half a hectare of vines from Olivier’s grandfather, about 60 years old.
Ooh that’s quite a pure, perfumed – very attractive – nose. A little more density, very fine texture and clarity – mineral, not sweet or easy, there’s a modest rigour but also a really classy wine here – I find this excellent.

2017 Chablis 1er Fourchaume
Part in the historic core of the vineyard.
Another wine with a lovely depth of perfume – below a mineral width. Perfumed in the mouth too – a drive and intensity to this wine – more saline and the intensity forces the spit-swallow question. This is top – to wait for – 1-3 years, but bravo. Super wine, such a long diminuendo of a finish.

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