Early on in my wine journey, I wasn’t a big fan of Chardonnay—I had drunk too many California butter bombs—until I met Chablis. From the northernmost wine district of the Burgundy region in France, Chablis is my favorite expression of Chardonnay. When I saw this Simonnet-Febvre Chablis 2017 at 305 Wines for an affordable price, I had to try it out.
The Maison & Domaine of Simonnet-Febvre was founded in 1840 by Jean Febvre, a barrel maker by trade from the town of Montbard. In the beginning, the house was known for its sparkling Chardonnays from Chablis, known today as Crémants de Bourgogne. Over the years, the Febvres expanded their reach in Chablis. Today, the Domaine comprises approximately nine acres, crowned by a 2/3 acre plot in the Grand Cru vineyard of Les Preuses, with 3.5 acres of 1er Cru Mont de Milieu, and 4.7 acres of communal Chablis vineyards.
In 2003, Simonnet-Febvre was acquired by Maison Louis Latour. Since its purchase, the Latours have completely renovated the winemaking facilities, installing new stainless-steel tanks and pneumatic presses. The vineyards have been reworked with the same sustainable vineyard practices utilized in Latour’s 125-acre domain in the Côte d’Or. Maison Louis Latour also hired a talented new winemaker, Jean-Philippe Archambaud.
Maison Simonnet-Febvre produces and vinifies grapes from the four levels of appellation of the vineyard of Chablis. These vineyards are world-renowned for their white wines with a distinctive fresh and mineral bouquet and an ample, generous and zesty palate. They are all produced from one single grape variety: Chardonnay. The soils of the Chablis appellation are composed of limestone dating back to the Late Jurassic period. The most representative layer is the Kimmeridgian which is very rich in marine fossil deposits.
The wine was pale yellow in color with a medium nose of wet stone and lemon. It was dry and medium bodied with nice acidity and green apple with minerality. Fresh and delicious. I paired it with some vegetable picking from the garden with my gal pal Bodhi. It was about $25 and I wish I had some more for the weekend.