A single unique grape variety, Chardonnay
The extraordinary renown of Chablis wines comes from the unique grape variety: Chardonnay. And it is in Burgundy, its birthplace, where its quality has become synonymous with the most flamboyant wines. On the Chablis hillsides which follow the river Serein it has developed a perfect harmony with its terroir. A harmony originally anticipated by the monks of Cîteaux. It was these same monks who founded Pontigny Abbey back in the 12th century and who introduced the ancestors of today’s vineyards. The work of these monks is essential in understanding the wines of today.
The lengthy selection of the best terroirs, harvest after harvest while identifying and cloning the best plants, perfecting winegrowing methods and experimenting with different vinification techniques; such was the immense contribution made by monastic viticulture in Burgundy. This is exactly the philosophy that we find today in La Chablisienne.
The Chablis terroirs are a reflection of the Chablisienne vineyards. Predominantly Kimmeridgian, with alternating marls and marl limestone along with deposits of fossilized oyster shells that give great personality to the Chablisienne wines and stamp them with their characteristic minerality. Precisely located and defined, each terroir produces unique wines, each with its own character and capacity to evolve and develop. Petit Chablis wines are perfect after one to three years while Chablis needs between two and five years according to the cuvée. Chablis Premier Crus and Chablis Grand Crus are wines with more ageing potential, needing five to ten years cellaring. How the climat (a specific plot within a vineyard) is exposed to the sun is of major importance in defining how the resulting wine expresses itself.