Chablis Premier Cru La Foret 2019, Domaine Pinson
Established in the 1640’s, this twelve hectare domaine is one of the most respected producers in Chablis. The Pinson brothers’ grandfather, Louis, established the estate’s pedigree in the late 1940’s and became one of the first growers to bottle and sell their own wine. Today, the domaine is run by Laurent (who is in charge of wine-making and the cellars) and his brother, Christophe (who is in control of all vineyard and viticultural work). In the past couple of years Laurent’s daughter, Charlène, has joined them and as a qualified oenologist, she is now very much involved in the wine-making side of the operation.
The vineyards are sensibly replanted, giving an average age of vines a little over thirty-five years old, whilst tight pruning ensures carefully maintained yields. The Pinson domaine is one of the few in Chablis that manually pick their entire production; vinification is traditional, with the initial fermentation of all the wines taking place in stainless steel vats. The Premiers and Grands Crus are transferred to a range of new, and not so new, oak barrels for ageing. This process allows the wines to have a wonderful purity and intensity of fruit (they are not dominated by oak, unlike barrel-fermented Chablis) and a richness which is so often lacking in the wines from this region. From the 4.24 hectares of Mont de Milieu comes a penetrating, pure and balanced wine, whilst La Fôret (0.68 hectares) with its fifty year-old vines, is vibrant and ‘flinty’ with piercing white peach fruit. The Grand Cru Les Clos warrants five to eight years in the bottle to express its fundamental complexity and amazing depth.