Domaine Leflaive

Bourgogne, France

Chevalier-Montrachet Grand Cru — 2021

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  • Introduction

    • The roots of the Leflaive family go back to 1717 when Claude Leflaive took up residence in Puligny Montrachet, intent upon cultivating several acres of vineyards. The domaine, in its present form, was created by Joseph Leflaive between the years of 1910-1930, as a result of his successive purchases of vineyards and houses.

  • Vineyard Profile

    • This Grand Cru is located just above the Montrachet Grand Cru on the Puligny side. Atop the climat, the slope becomes steeper and the soil more shallow. Further east, closer to the Montrachet, the soil deepens and turns dark red due to the increased presence of iron. The temperatures are slightly cooler than Montrachet because of the higher altitude, and the soils are rich with gravel. Thus, the wines usually show an intense minerality, the sign of the great Chevalier-Montrachet.

    • Vineyards: 3 parcels, 1ha 99a (4.92 acres); Chevalier on the lower south: 6.5 ouvrées (0.69 acre), planted in 1957 and 1958; Chevalier on the lower north: 21 ouvrées (2.22 acres), planted in 1955, 1964 and 1980; Chevalier from the top: 19 ouvrées (2.01 acres), planted in 1974
    • Appellation: Côtes de Beaune, Puligny Montrachet
    • Location: Bourgogne
    • Cultivation: 100% biodynamic
    • Vine Age: Chevalier on the lower south: planted in 1957 and 1958 Chevalier on the lower north: in 1955, 1964 and 1980 Chevalier from the top: planted in 1974
    • Soil: Calcareous clay
  • Vintage Report

    • Marked by frost and humidity, this year proved to be particularly difficult for the vines.

      With premature advances in the vineyards in March due to warm spring-like temperatures, the losses from early April frosts proved to be quite extreme (30%-80% in some vineyards). June offered an alternation of stormy periods and heat, including an episode of hail on the 21st in Solutré. The pressure from mildew and powdery mildew was a constant this year, with a rainy period in July, requiring expert intervention from our vineyard teams. In August and September, we observed a significant rise in temperatures which allowed for the maturity of the grapes to catch up. Harvest began on September 22nd for a period of 8 days, before the rain returned.

      In this complicated year, between frost and humidity, the maturity remained remarkable with degrees (12.5% potential alcohol) offering promise for a most satisfying vintage.

  • Vinification

    • Fermentation: Long, gentle pneumatic pressing, decanting over 24 hours, then racking and running into cask of the must.
    • Barrel Fermentation: Alcoholic fermentation in oak casks, 25% new (maximum 1/3 Vosges, minimum 2/3 Allier)
    • Filtration: Fining and very light filtering at bottling, if necessary
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
    • Alcohol: 13%