Domaine Jean-Paul et Benoit Droin
Chablis – Les Clos
Grand Cru White barrel
Tasted: Oct 15, 2018
Note: from a large 1.40 ha parcel of vines; 50% wood, approximately one-third of which was new
Producer note: Benoît Droin told me that 2017 had a “complicated beginning with the frost and then a cool and rainy spring that cost us as much as 50% in some sectors. The summer though was very warm and the vines progressed rapidly though thankfully the temperatures were not as elevated as what we experienced in 2015 and 2016. Moreover there was just enough rain along the way to avoid hydric stress. The clement conditions continued through to the early September harvest and the fruit achieved excellent maturity levels plus it basically required almost no sorting. Sugars and acidities were both very good with good pHs as well. As to the wines, they are extremely rich with plenty of dry extract and I would describe them as a hypothetical blend of 2012 and 2014. As such they should be appreciated by those who enjoy their whites young but with that said, there is no reason that the 2017s shouldn’t age well too.” Droin continues to bottle all of his wines under Diam corks with a mix of Diam 5 and Diam 10 depending on the level of the wine. (European Cellars/Eric Soloman Selections, www.europeancellars.com, NC, USA; Berry Brothers & Rudd, www.bbr.com, Goedhuis & Co., www.goedhuis.com and Uncorked Ltd, www.uncorked.co.uk, all UK).
Tasting note: This too is carrying enough wood to point out to readers though it doesn’t really detract from the otherwise pure, elegant and airy aromas of apple, pear and sea shore scented nose. The attractively sleek, intense and mineral-driven middle weight plus flavors possess an unusually refined mouth feel before culminating in a delicious, complex and lingering finish where a touch of wood resurfaces. This too will need at least a few years of patience as it’s tightly wound today.