Chablis Les ClosGrand Cru
Grape Variety :
Site: the largest and probably most famous Grand Cru, located between Valmur on the left and Blanchot on the right. The exposure is responsible for its generous and powerful character.
History & tradition: it is the cradle of Chablis, already recognized by the medieval monks as a superb location for planting a vineyard. The term "Les Clos" (enclosure, in French) probably refers to the surrounding wall that they built to fence off the parcel. This wall is no longer in existence. At the end of the 19th Century the vineyard was devastated by the phylloxera disease. In the 1960's, Robert Drouhin was one of the first Beaune propriétaires to bring it back to life.
Soil: the Kimmeridgian limestone contains millions of tiny marine fossils embedded in a kind of whitish mortar which may have been once the bottom of the sea...hundreds of million years ago. This marine origin gives the wines of Chablis their unique flavour.
Drouhin estate: 1.3 ha (3.212 acres).
Average of the vines: 37 years.
Biological cultivation since 1990 and biodynamic cultivation since 1999.
Soil maintenance: age-old methods. Plouging: "buttage" (hilling up around the vine-stocks) in autumn; "débuttage" (ploughing back in spring); work between the rows and the vine stocks done with manual tools only.
Treatment: only authorized products for biological cultivation are used - infusions and macerations of plant materials, sulfur and copper, powdered rock. Natural predators are not eliminated.
Plantation density: 8,000 to 10,000 stocks/ha.
Pruning: double Guyot "Vallée de la Marne" (for its resistance to frost).
Yield: we aim for a lower yield, such as it existed before the new law. This yield is therefore the present maximum yield minus 20%.
Average yield at the Domaine: 43.2hl/ha (the yield currently authorized for the appellation is now 54hl/ha).
Harvesting: by hand.
Pressing: very slow so as to respect the fruit. Juices from the last pressings are not retained.
Type: in oak barrel (0% new wood).
Length: 12 months.
Origin of the wood: French oak forests.
Weathering of the wood: Joseph Drouhin insists on total control of the weathering for a period of 3 years, one of the contributing elements to the elegance of the wine.
Follow-up: barrel by barrel.
Throughout the ageing process, decisions are taken only after careful tasting evaluation. The data obtained is completed through technical analysis. As with every other Joseph Drouhin wine, absolute priority is given to the true expression of terroir and character of the vintage.
Tasting note by Véronique Boss-Drouhin
"A great wine, perhaps the one most able to express what the terroir of Chablis really is like. The colour is pale gold yellow, with greenish hints. Refined nose, with aromas of lily ("fleur de lys"), honey or preserved lemon. Astounding depth and velvety sensation ("gras") on the palate, with some delicate marine nuances. Intense and long aftertaste. After 5 or 6 years, even more complex and subtle aromas develop in the wine. A wine of incomparable finesse".
The wines show great purity of taste and a pleasant floral style. Chablis is very mineral in character, almost briny.
Temperature: 14°C (55°F).
Cellaring: 5 to 15 years.