Seeking lean Chablis

Hi everyone-

I’ve been craving that lean, high acid, chalkiness that Chablis does so well. I’ve had a few bottles recently that, while good, didn’t taste like quintessential Chablis. I even tried the Louis Michel Montee de Tonnerre that everyone is going on about on this board; its was very good wine. But it didn’t scratch that itch for some reason- felt too round, ripe for what I was looking for. It came off a retail shelf without the best climate control so maybe it was a touch cooked and lost some acid as a result.

Anyway, what Chablis producers/vineyards/age do reach for when you want chalk in your glass?



depends a lot on vintage as well as vineyard and producer.

Piuze Vaulorent “QC” Quatre Chemins - both 2019 and 2020 are relatively chalky


Just had the 2019 Louis Michel MdT and it could have stripped the chrome off a tailpipe. Big fan.


Disclaimer/mild thread drift: I am bad at noticing chalkiness. With that being said, my vote is for 2019 Liquid Farm White Hill Chardonnay. It is lean and mean when young-ish. Yes, it is from the USA.



Also, Moreau-Naudet typically brings the chalkiness at least when the volume of tropical fruit is down. The 19s especially. Beru can also have a chalky character but I find you have to decant hours in advance and of course there can be a bit of au naturale in there as well.

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Noah is correct, most Chablis is pretty ripe and tropical in the past decade or more.

I’ll bet it sells better than the lean super-tart wines of the past.

But I too would be interested in a blast from the past style, so let’s see if there are any out there (which are also good wines too).


Look around for any left-over 2017’s. I just found some Fevre Les Lys at WHWC (prearrival). there’s also 2017 Fevre Beauroy at a couple of places, but I’m not as confident that this will have what we’re all looking for.


Though 2017 is a relatively higher acid (and just generally very good) vintage, still most wines are not going to have old school Chablis acid and mineral levels, are they?

But try the L Michel Forêt
I find it leaner than MdT

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Loved the 2019, just ordered some 2020 based on this thread, trigger the memory!


I think this has more to do with vintage than producer or site (not to say those other factors don’t matter). 2017 is a great suggestion, but most of those wines were released quite a while ago, so I’d be concerned about storage conditions since then.

With the caveat that I am an admitted chablis novice, I also whole heartedly endorse Moreau-Naudet in particular their Pargues bottling which can be found in the approximately $50 range in the US. I had it recently and just purchased a half case. Even their “basic” chablis bottling scores quite well in QPR in my (again, novice) opinion.

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It’s been getting warmer and that is making it harder to find Chablis with spine. A grower I’ve represented for a long time is generally in that style. Two more old-school growers you might try are Vocoret and Long-Depaquit.

Have you tried any Petit Chablis?

Dan Kravitz

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2008 1er Crus from D E Defaix. The current vintage

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I was just about to suggest that. Presumably their less favorable, less sunny plots ought to be zippier?

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I find Gilbert Picq also fits this bill quite nicely, and 2nd the nom for Vocoret - thought the VV bottlings have some wood and sways slightly off what Noah was looking for. The Les Foret can be an excellent bargain too.

Are we in general agreement hat 14 was the last truly great ‘classic’ Chablis vintage? In fact, I find myself hesitant to open my 14’s irrespective of drinking status, quality, and or price simply from the fact I cannot readily replace the vintage type from 15 going forward. Generally speaking of course.

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In looking around at CT notes, these do sounds like producers that fit the description the OP is looking for. I just ordered some 2017 Vocoret Les Forets from Liner & Elsen for $41@ on your suggestion.

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It is not just about the producer

concentrate on the left bank more than the right - especially vineyards such as Vaillons and Sechet. Also Vaucoupin which I always think of as left bank though in fact it has cunningly crossed the river.


Even +10 years ago I found many Petit Chablis wines rather bland, lacking both substance and acid structure their regular Chablis siblings from the same vintage showed. When I was working ITB, I typically recommended them to people who wanted Chablis-style Chardonnay but with less cut and structure.

Of course there are always some exceptions with some producers making terrific Petit Chablis bottlings, but on average I’ve found Petit Chablis wines have always been lower in acidity then either Chablis or Cru Chablis wines.

Of the recent vintages, 2019 has been positively zippy throughout the range. I’ve found wines from the basic Chablis level up to Grand Cru level to be more old-school than many other vintages of the recent past. Some producers have made slightly tropical and a bit softer wines, but for example Laurent Tribut, Christian Moreau and Patrick Piuze wines have shown bright, racy acidity and the fruit department has been more lemony than exotic.