Chablis Grand Cru Les Blanchots La Réserve de l’Obédience – 2014
Réserve de l’Obédience is produced from the finest selection of Les Blanchots grand cru vineyards. The eight plots that Laroche owns total 4.57 hectares (11.29 acres) of the 11.65 hectares (28.79 acres) that comprise Les Blanchots. Each plot is distinctive, with different vine age, location on the slope, rootstock, clone origin and soil depth — implying a variety of styles. Vintage conditions also vary greatly. A site with favorable sun exposure may be too warm in sunny vintages; a vineyard with less sun would give more balanced grapes. For these reasons, it would be folly to strive for the best wine from one single vineyard.
- Definition: The ninth-century monastery, L’Obédiencerie is where monks made the first Chablis, in the town of Chablis itself. The main offices and cellars of Domaine Laroche are located in this ancient stone monastery which is known as the birthplace of Chablis. La Réserve de l’Obédience is blended from the best wines of Les Blanchots grand cru, selected for their balance and harmony. Seventy different components kept in tanks, casks or large old wooden vats may be considered for the final blend.
- 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.
- Size: The eight plots that Laroche owns total 3.74 hectares (9.24 acres). Each plot is distinctive, with different vine age, location on the slope, rootstock, clone origin and soil depth — implying a variety of styles.
- Vine Age: Planted 1950, 1965, 1968, 1986, 1991, 2009
- Clones: Sélection massale
- Soil: Blanchots has a unique soil composition, combining typical Chablis Kimmeridgian limestone with a layer of white clay. Blanchots takes its name from this white clay which retains moisture and protects the vines from hydric stress.
- Elevation: 155-215 meters (508.54-705.39 feet)
- Exposure: Southeast; slow ripening conditions
- Density: 5,880 vines/hectare (2,380 vines/acre); 10,000 vines/hectare (4,097 vines/acre) for younger vines
- Training: Cane positioning alongside the wire
The ripening was slow and fully achieved, without any over-concentration. Skins were pale yellow thanks to a ripeness without excess. The juice has a remarkable balance, with nice acidity, without too much malic acid and the alcohol potential is medium. The vintage has a great potential. It is quite similar to 1996 in the remarkable acid structure. It shows some characteristics of 2010 and 2008, with a still more beautiful balance.
- Harvest Date(s): September 17-20
- Malolactic: 100%
- Aging: Separate lots are aged for 7-8 months in casks, tanks and large, old wooden vats. The wine is then blended together and aged for an additional 6-7 months in stainlesssteelvats and French oak barrels.
- Filtration: With minimum filtration to preserve the natural character of the wine
- Fining: Bentonite
- Bottle Aging: 5-6 months
- Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
- Alcohol: 13%
- TA: 4.74g/L
- p H: 3.07
- RS: 1.83g/L
Appearance: Light, clear, radiant
Aroma: – Typical floral character of Blanchots, intense minerality. Ripe white fruit. Remarkable aroma complexity, with a superb finish.
Taste: Typical floral character.
Chablis Grand Cru La Réserve de l’Obédience – 2014 – 94 points – Wine & Spirits
“…tingling with freshness, opening into a long flavor of pale fruit, jasmine flowers and complex salinity that evaporates into a sense of elegance. The wine’s purity makes it accessible now, providing a mineral bath for a salt-baked fish...”
Chablis Grand Cru La Réserve de l’Obédience – 2014 – 92 points – Burghound.com
“… pear, apple and sea breeze-suffused aromas. There is also a bit more concentration to the delicious, rounder and richer medium-bodied flavors that are more powerful … on the clean and solidly dry finale... ”
Chablis Grand Cru La Réserve de l’Obédience – 2014
Typical floral character of Blanchots, intense minerality. Ripe white fruit. Remarkable aroma complexity, with a superb finish.
Chablis Grand Cru La Réserve de l’Obédience – 2014 – 93 points – Wine Spectator
“Sleek and vibrant, with apple, lemon, stone and fresh green herbal flavors fused to the vivid structure. Shows fine intensity, leaving a firm, mouthwatering impression.”