Domaine Laroche

Burgundy, France

Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos – 2017

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • Chablis – Les Clos Grand Cru Domaine Laroche owns 1.12 hectares (2.77 acres) of the 26.05 hectares (64.37 acres) of Les Clos grand cru vineyard. Les Clos is located straight in front of the village of Chablis at an elevation of 139 to 166 meters (456 to 545 feet) with a southern exposure. This favorable sunny exposure allows the grapes to achieve excellent ripeness.

    • Definition: This vineyard was once completely surrounded by a stone wall, hence the name “Les Clos,” meaning “enclosure” or “walled vineyard” in Burgundy. Monks from the influential Abbey of Saint Martin at Tours planted vines here in the 9th century.
    • Viticulture: One man, one plot: There are more than 30 people who are dedicated to caring for the 90-plus hectares (222.39 acres) of Domaine Laroche vineyards, with each person responsible for only one plot. This tailor-made approach allows them to manage the vineyards with precision, speed and accuracy. Everyone at Domaine Laroche practices “lutte raisonnée,” or “reasoned protection,” (using chemical intervention only when required): The vineyard is plowed to aerate the soil and encourage development of the root system, as well as the organic life in the soil. Vines are pruned and trained by hand, with a strict pruning and debudding regimen. Leaf plucking occurs to aerate the canopy and avoid the development of botrytis, while trellising aerates the grapes and provides them with favorable exposure.
    • Vine Age: From 30 to 50 years old; 5,880 vines per hectare (14,523 vines per acre); 10,000 vines per hectare (24,700 vines per acre) for younger vines; massal selection from Laroche old vines for the new plantings
    • Soil: Les Clos’ well-draining soil means that water retention in the vineyard is quite low, causing the grapes to be concentrated in both aroma and acidity.
  • Vintage Report

    • A precocious season with buds showing in early April. The cold wave that followed slowed down the growth, leaving good conditions for the flowering beginning of June. This singular season offered beautiful bunches and quality grapes with good health conditions. Once pressed, the juices were precise, straight, with great texture. This vintage will bring well-structured wines with a nice freshness.

  • Vinification

    • PRESSING: The grapes are harvested and sorted by hand. Whole bunches in a pneumatic press, then 12 hours settling at 12° C to 15° C (53° F to 59° F) in specially designed wide tanks.

    • Fermentation: The must ferments for 3 weeks, a part in stainless steel vats and the other one in French oak barrels.
    • Aging: 9 months aging, around 60% in stainless steel vats and the rest in French oak barrels. Then, 6 months aging in bottles
    • Filtration: Minimal filtration is used to preserve and maximize the natural character of the wine.
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
    • Alcohol: 12.5%
  • Tasting Notes

    • The influence of this exceptional terroir appears in the pure mineral character and the intensity of aromas. Quite restrained at first, this Grand Cru offers finesse, complexity and a superb length.

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Reviews

  • Domaine Laroche Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru – 2017 – The Wine Advocate – 91-93+ Points

    The 2017 Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos is very promising, unwinding in the glass with notes of citrus zest, preserved citrus, almond paste and sweet white flowers. On the palate, it's full-bodied, chewy and concentrated, with a firm, tight-knit core and juicy acids. It's still very young and unevolved, but I look forward to seeing it from bottle.

  • Domaine Laroche Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru – 2017 – Wine Spectator – 92 Points

    Almost Côte de Beaune in style, with toasty oak framing the lemon, apple and mineral flavors, until the steely structure exerts itself. With air, this comes together beautifully, in a balanced, harmonious way. Decant now or wait a year or two. Drink now through 2025.

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