Chablis is a region in the northernmost wine region in Burgundy. All Chablis is 100% Chardonnay. Many are aged without any oak influence. These are very different from New World Chardonnay where the style tends to be buttery and soft. Chablis is known for having a steely quality with a lot of minerality.
I tasted five Chablis on their own and with scallops seared in butter, a salad with avocado and fish and chips. The order of the five wines tasted:
1) 2012 Domaine Chènevières $20, 12.5% alcohol, no oak
2) 2012 Domaine Chènevières Les Grandes Vignes $25, 12.5% alcohol, no oak
3) 2012 Domaine Chènevières Premier Cru L’Homme Mort $40, 13% alcohol
2013 Domaine Chatelain Premier Cru Fourchaume $33, 13%
4) 2013 Domaine Chatelain Grand Cru Les Clos $60, 13%
Unfortunately, the 2013 Fourchaume was corked so it was never tasted. Here are my notes from the tasting.
- Dull slate, lemon curd/zest on nose. Fresh on palate with floral and citrus elements. 89 Had with scallops and it broadened the wine making it richer and fuller. Improved the wine. Avocado has a similar effect, softening the wine.
- Dried hay, lemon zest, minerals on nose. Bright acidity with lots of minerals and a zingy finish. 92 Had with the scallops and it brought out a salty quality in the wine, almost like ground up sea shells.
- Sea air, ozone, citrus zest, rhubard custard on nose. Balaced on palate with a clean, dry finish. As the wine warmed a hint of fennel was picked up. Absolutely delightful. 95
- Complex nose with many layers. Lots of citrus, key lime pie, baking spice. Palate rich and complex with sweet citrus fruits, pie crust and limestone. 93 As it warmed the acidity increased and score went to 95.
These wines were all very enjoyable. They had crisp acidity, minerality and complexity. They were a very good match with the scallops and even the avocado. They did not go well with the fried fish, however. What stood out to me in all of the wines is the minerality. There was some sort of slate, limestone, wet stone or something along those lines in each wine. The 2nd and 3rd had very prominent aromas of the ocean. These wines had the acidity to pair well with food, as I discovered with the scallops. Overall, a very solid tasting. Chablis is a region not to be ignored.