Domaine Laroche

Burgundy, France

Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2013

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • Domaine Laroche owns 2.16 hectares (5.34 acres) of the 126.1 hectares (311.57 acres) in the Vaillons premier cru appellation. Les Vaillons is a well-favored site with an elevation of 180 to 200 meters (590 to 656 feet), a generous southeastern exposure and well-drained soil. During sunny vintages, the grapes attain perfect ripeness in this premier cru vineyard and produce wines with bright fruit flavors.

    • Definition: “Vaillons” refers to the smaller valleys or climats that the larger climat of Les Vaillons can be divided into: Roncières, Beugnons, Les Lys, Les Epinottes, Châtains, Sécher and Mélinots.
    • 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: 40 years
    • Soil: The limestone marl and Kimmeridgian soil is 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.
  • Vintage Report

    • A year like 2013 required much attention. From spring onwards, weather conditions were particularly challenging, implying careful intervention in bud removal, cane positioning and leaf plucking in order to aerate the canopy and limit the development of diseases. Hand-harvesting and sorting were crucial for quality. Despite the demands of the 2013 vintage, the profile of each terroir is quite clear, and the wines are harmonious with the typical salty finish of Chablis.

  • Vinification

    • Pressing: 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: 3 weeks (85% stainless steel, 15% French oak)
    • Aging: 9 months (70% stainless steel, 30% French oak)
    • Filtration: Minimum filtration to preserve the natural character of the wine
  • Technical Information

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

    • Appearance: Intense gold
      Aroma: Typical spice overtone
      Taste: A powerful yet elegant wine

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Reviews

  • Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2013 – 91 points – Wine Enthusiast

    "From old vines, this rich and concentrated wine is dominated by ripe apple and pear flavors. They combine with the well-judged toastiness from wood aging to give a full, dense wine will age well."

  • Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons Vieilles Vignes – 2013 – 92 points – The Tasting Panel

    “The definitive Chablis house; lush and juicy with tangy acidity and crisp minerals; bright, lively and balanced with a long finish.”

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