Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2009
Domaine Laroche owns 6.91 hectares (17.07 acres) in the Vaillons premier cru appellation. Les Vaillons is a well-favored site with a generous southeastern exposure and well-drained soil. Limestone marl and Kimmeridgian soil are deep, and the vines are deeply rooted in this stony environment. Formed during the Kimmeridgian geological period (Late Jurassic, 150 to 155 million years ago), the soil contains a mixture of limestone and clay with a multitude of tiny fossilized oyster shells. This unique soil structure gives a finesse to Chablis that is precise, elegant and exceptional.
- Viticulture: “Lutte raisonnée,” or “reasoned protection,” (using chemical intervention only when required): The vineyard is plowed to aerate the soil and encourage development of organic life in the soil. Vines are pruned and trained by hand, with a strict pruning and debudding regimen. Leaf plucking to aerate the canopy and avoid the development of botrytis. Trellising to aerate and give the grapes favorable exposure.
- Size: 6.91 hectares (17.07 acres)
- Vine Age: Average of 33 years
- Density: 6,700 vines/hectare (2,711 vines/acre)
2009 is a vintage to remember with a generous amount of sunny days throughout the vegetative cycle and the ripening season which paved the way for an early harvest in September. The contrast of sunny days and cool nights resulted in ripe grapes with good freshness and an excellent aromatic synthesis. 2009 is a fruity, complex, balanced and harmonious vintage to be enjoyed now or cellared for a decade.
- Harvest Date(s): September 15-30; manual harvest; hand sorted at the winery
- Yields: 58 hl/ha (4.3 tons/acre)
Pressing: Whole bunches in a pneumatic press, then 12 hours settling at 12°-15°C (53°-55°F) in specially designed wide tanks which accelerate the natural settling process
- Fermentation: 21 days at 18°C (64°F), 15% in French oak barrels, 85% in stainless steel
- Malolactic: 100%
- Aging: 9 months aging, 15% in French oak barrels of which 25% are new, 85% in stainless steel
- Filtration: Minimum filtration to preserve the maximum natural character of the wine
- Bottled: Under low pressure on a bottling line designed to protect quality
- Bottle Aging: 12 months
- Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
- Production (in cases): 4,166 cases
- Production Case Pack: 6/750ml
- Alcohol: 12.5%
Appearance: Intense gold
Aroma: Complex with hints of flint, ripe pear and summer blossoms; delicate and floral
Taste: Offers intense white fruit and a fine freshness, with a long finish. Sophisticated, intense with perfect balance.
Aging Potential: Peak drinking between 10-15 years
Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2009 – Chablis keeps it clean, unadorned – Chicago Tribune
"Perhaps the old vines lend it a richness and electricity you see more in Puligny than in Vaillons, but this is one delicious Chablis."
Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2009 – Outstanding Recent Release – The SOMM Journal
“This sun-yellow old-vine bottling displays notes of apple pie, lemonade, orange juice, and a bit of raw cookie dough on a medium-length palate.”
Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2009 – 90 points – The Wine Advocate
“The 2009 Chablis Les Vaillons wraps around the palate with succulent pears, apricots, light floral honey and mint layered into the generous, rich finish. This inviting, opulent wine is likely to offer its greatest pleasure upon release.”
Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2009 – 90 points – Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar
“…nose hints at yellow fruit. Broad and sweet on entry, then spicy and voluminous… with good lift to the fleshy citrus and ripe peach flavors. Broad, ripe and stuffed with fruit. Finishes fine-grained and persistent, with noteworthy energy.”