2021 Chablis, Montée de Tonnerre, 1er Cru, Louis Michel & Fils, Burgundy

2021 Chablis, Montée de Tonnerre, 1er Cru, Louis Michel & Fils, Burgundy

Product: 20218011781
Prices start from £49.00 per bottle (75cl). Buying options
2021 Chablis, Montée de Tonnerre, 1er Cru, Louis Michel & Fils, Burgundy

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From a substantial 3.7 hectare holding in the lieu-dit of Chapelot, which is south facing with classic Kimmeridgian limestone soil. Splendidly uncompromising, in line with Guillaume's ambition for his expression of Chablis. The aromatics are textural, not of fruit, and the palate, with a note of cool lanolin, is effortlessly intense.

Drink 2027 - 2040

Berry Bros. & Rudd

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Critics reviews

Jasper Morris MW91-94/100

Pale lemon colour. I really like the bouquet here. It has punch and tension. This is very much more in place with a salinity that definitely shows a marine touch. There is fair body and length as well, a 2021 to look out for.

Drink 2025 - 2031

Jasper Morris MW, InsideBurgundy.com (June 2022)

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This is also exuberantly floral in character with its cool and more elegant aromas of mineral reduction, citrus, oyster shell, spice and wet stone. The sleeker if perhaps not quite as dense medium-weight flavours possess an even finer texture while flashing focused power on the balanced and sneaky long finish. Once again, better depth would help but this beauty seems to have solid development potential.

Drink from 2031 onward

Allen Meadows, Burghound.com (August 2023)

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Wine Advocate92/100

The 2021 Chablis 1er Cru Montée de Tonnerre is one of the less reductive, more outgoing wines in the range, exhibiting expressive aromas of pear, peach and orange zest mingled with hints of white flowers and pastry cream. Medium to full-bodied, satiny and vibrant, with a delicately layered core of fruit and a saline finish, it's a strong effort.

Drink 2023 - 2037

William Kelley, Wine Advocate (September 2023)

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Louis Michel's Montée de Tonnerre comes from the southwest facing slopes of Chapelot. A more serious premier cru with extra density on the palate. Beautifully clean and fresh. This will need several years to blossom. Keep for another three to five years and then drink over the following decade. Delivers all that Montée de Tonnerre is renowned for.

Drink 2026 - 2032

Andy Howard MW, Decanter.com (October 2022)

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About this WINE

Domaine Louis Michel

Domaine Louis Michel

Prior to 1970 all the wines from this domaine were fermented and matured in old oak barrels. By 1980 the old oak had been thrown out and the domaine had switched entirely to stainless steel. Today the domaine is run by Jean-Loup Michel and is widely recognised as the prime exponents of unoaked Chablis in the region.

It has 21 hectares of vineyards, mainly Premier and Grand Cru. The grapes are fermented at low temperatures in order to preserve their aromatic freshness and so that they may amply reflect the origins of their respective vineyard sites. These are crisp, intensely flavoured wines that display what heights the Chardonnay grape can achieve in its purest and unadorned form and without the intrusion of oak.

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Chablis Premier Cru

Chablis Premier Cru

Chablis Premiers Crus are stylish, minerally wines which, typically, are less intense than the Grand Crus but finer and longer-lasting than basic Chablis. They are highly underrated with the better examples outclassing many a good village white Burgundy.

The vineyards cover 750 hectares, scattered across 15 communes on isolated slopes with good exposure. There are 17 principal Premiers Crus but in total 79 vineyards are eligible, with most of the lesser-known ones using a more familiar umbrella name on their label. The best flank the Grands Crus on the north bank of the River Serein, like Montée de Tonnerre (probably the best of all), Fourchaume and Mont de Milieu.

Those just south of Chablis, like Vaillons, Montmains (especially Les Forêts) and Côte de Léchet are also good. With the vineyard area having doubled since the 1970s, quality varies enormously so, as ever, the producer is key.

Styles also vary, with some maturing and fermenting in stainless steel for a purer, more minerally style, while others age and sometimes even ferment their wines in oak for extra complexity.  The best examples reach their apogee at eight to 10 years, but are normally enjoyed long before then.

Recommended producers: Jean-Claude BessinBillaud-SimonSéguinot-BordetJ.-P. & Benoit DroinDuplessisDefaix

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Chardonnay is often seen as the king of white wine grapes and one of the most widely planted in the world It is suited to a wide variety of soils, though it excels in soils with a high limestone content as found in Champagne, Chablis, and the Côte D`Or.

Burgundy is Chardonnay's spiritual home and the best White Burgundies are dry, rich, honeyed wines with marvellous poise, elegance and balance. They are unquestionably the finest dry white wines in the world. Chardonnay plays a crucial role in the Champagne blend, providing structure and finesse, and is the sole grape in Blanc de Blancs.

It is quantitatively important in California and Australia, is widely planted in Chile and South Africa, and is the second most widely planted grape in New Zealand. In warm climates Chardonnay has a tendency to develop very high sugar levels during the final stages of ripening and this can occur at the expense of acidity. Late picking is a common problem and can result in blowsy and flabby wines that lack structure and definition.

Recently in the New World, we have seen a move towards more elegant, better- balanced and less oak-driven Chardonnays, and this is to be welcomed.

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