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Billaud-Simon, Chablis 1er Cru Les Vaillons 2011 - Half Bottle
Bright, clear hue with attractive golden tinges. This 1er Cru offers remarkable aromatic complexity with aromas of ripe citrus and white flowers. The palate is round and seductive with a lively attack. Excellent length and a refined aromatic persistency combining fruity.
Hand harvested in order to preserve the quality of the fruit. The grapes are sorted manually on a vibrating sorting table in order to retain only the most healthy fruit. The grapes are drained naturally before being pressed using a pneumatic press in order to gently extract the juices and conserve as much aroma as possible. Static cold settling of the musts for 12 to 24 hours in stainless steel vats in order to obtain a bright, clear juice. Alcoholic fermentation followed by malolactic fermentation, both natural, in stainless steel vats. 14 to 16 months in stainless steel vats with, if necessary, some time spent in French oak barrels. The ageing process preserves freshness and minerality whilst bringing complexity and body to the wine. The wine is racked twice before being bottled in the end of Autumn.
Domaine Billaud-Simon is renowned for producing some of the best wines in Chablis, long recognised for their steely, mineral style. Founded in 1815, the estate today is owned by the Faiveley family of famed Burgundian producer, Domaine Faiveley. Domaine Billaud-Simon owns 17 hectares of vineyards in some of the best areas in Chablis. With four grand cru (Les Clos, Les Preuses, Vaudesir and Les Blanchots), as well as four premier cru, (Montee de Tonnerre, Mont-de-Milieu, Fourchaume and Vaillons). The domaine has long been known for its focused, mineral-driven wines thanks to meticulous viticulture in the best sites along with the latest winemaking technology. Billaud-Simon seek to produce a crisp, mineral style of Chablis with finesse, purity and balance. They are delicious when young, yet offer great ageing potential. The high acidity is complemented by richness of fruit, particularly in the Grand Crus which will typically improve in bottle for at least a decade.
Wine Advocate 89pts (2011) - From disparate estate parcels (each separately vinified) in several lieux-dits – but principally Sechet and Roncieres – the Billaud-Simon 2011 Chablis Vaillons leads with high-toned herbal essences, lemon oil, and smoky, fusil evocations of crushed chalk. An admirable sense of mid-palate brightness and lift allied to density leads to a finish of bright citricity and relatively austere but impressively-persistent stoniness.