Soil plays a crucial role in determining the character of wine. Clay-rich soils produce bold wines; flinty soils imbue their wines with notes of gunsmoke. And in Chablis, the particular blend of limestone, clay, chalk, and ancient oyster shells gives its wines an elegant, lace-like minerality.
The winemakers of Chablis must decide how to balance this vibrant mineral energy with Chardonnay’s ripe fruit and potential acidity. Too much ripeness and the wine is flat; too much acidity and the wine is harsh.
Twentysomething Romain Collet may not have many years under his belt, but his first few vintages have provided several decades’ worth of challenges. And Collet has already proven himself an expert in achieving the balance needed for excellent Chablis.
Collet’s collection of 2016 Chablis is terrific across the board, but today’s Premier Cru “Montmains” makes an argument as the best value of the lineup. It’s perhaps a step less complex than Sêcher or Montée de Tonnerre, but it’s classic and easier to enjoy young. Burghound awarded 90 points, citing “attractively textured flavors,” and “softly exotic aromas.”
Collet has perfectly blended the brightness and minerality of classic Chablis with attractive floral and fruit notes. The nose is unmistakably Chablis — notes of lime rind, alpine spices, and stony earth. The mouth is clean and smooth, with excellent energy and a rich, tension-filled finish.
Serve this with a plate of briny oysters to start your next cocktail party — order a case and we’ll throw in an Ansonia Wines oyster knife for free.
Collet Chablis 1er cru “Montmains” 2016
bottle price: $32
FREE EAST COAST SHIPPING ON ANY 12 BOTTLES